Here at Billy Tannery we are on a mission to promote British leather and British craftsmanship. Crafts are an essential part of our culture and keeping traditional leather-working skills alive is incredibly important to us. We have teamed up with four British leather craftspeople to bring you a range of limited edition products celebrating our British deer leather.

The Maker Series Challenge

Each maker will be given a limited amount of deer leather in their chosen colour to make as many of their ‘hero’ products as possible. Next, we've challenged them to minimise as much of the offcuts as possible by developing a second product - this could be anything from a keyring to a leather sculpture.

All of the products will be available on our website to pre-order from the 15th March for dispatch in April. We haven't given each maker much leather so the numbers will be very limited. We can't wait to see what they come up with.

British Deer Leather

Deer are a sustainable source for leather due to living in abundance throughout the British countryside. In fact the UK deer population has grown so much in recent years that deer are causing disruption and damage to ecosystems. It's therefore vital for herd sizes to be controlled through culling.

Although venison is growing in popularity, deerskins remain a shockingly under-utilised source for leather in this country and most go to waste. Deer leather combines both softness with durability and strength and it's prized by many European luxury brands. We source skins from a variety of different breeds from Fallow Deer to Red Deer. When it comes to Red Deer skins, their large size allows for endless design options with some skins being up to 18 square feet (more than twice the size of an average goatskin).

Meet the Makers

Melissa Marie Leather

Melissa Marlie Leather

Melissa began her journey as a maker in 2018 through repairing her own equestrian tack. Learning the skills and processes of how her tack had been constructed became a fascination and obsession. Melissa uses traditional techniques, including saddle stitching, to hand craft each item - all made exclusively from Billy Tannery and J. & F.J. Baker leather. There is a focus on longevity as this is what originally inspired Melissa to explore leather work. 

Read more about Melissa and her work here.



Based in Cornwall, Francli was founded in 2013 by two makers, Ali and Franki. Inspired by their surroundings, the pair set out to create well-made, well-loved and lasting products. As the Francli following grows, Ali and her team continues to stick to the original approach of creating bespoke items and small-batches, which will last for life, made from quality materials that are responsibly sourced or salvaged. 

Charlie Borrow

The Charlie Borrow Workshop was founded in 2013. It's here that Charlie produces every piece from design to production, also using traditional leather craft techniques to create products that have longevity. Charlie exclusively works on a made to order basis so we are thrilled to be offering one of his pieces as part of the Maker Series.

All of our Makers consider each stage of the design and production process and this includes the sourcing of materials and hardware. Charlie provides some insight on where he sources his hardware and fabrics on his website. 



Yusuf began his journey as a leather craftsman unusually whilst studying law. A workshop in the Cotswolds sparked an interest in traditional British leather craftsmanship. He has continued to pursue and explore this skill ever since, moving into his own Cockpit Arts studio in 2019 and forming his own brand, Yussico. Yusuf has also adopted a slow and considered approach, explaining that handcrafting provides a natural cap for production and growth.

Launching in March

Our Maker Series will officially launch in early March with the range of limited edition products available to pre-order from the 15th March. In the meantime, we look forward to following each of our Makers as they share an insight into the construction process on their social media. Make sure to follow @billytannery where we will be sharing all the details.

Browse our existing range of deer leather products 

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