10 September 2014

Out for Repairs by Nan

A while back, inspired by the colorful, decorated organizers I've seen in blogs and Facebook groups, I decided to switch from a .05 pen in black or blue ink to bold, .07 pens in a variety of colors. I was happy with my choice of pen (Pentel EnerGel), but the pen loop on my Cuban Filo wasn't. The new pens were a bit too thick for the loop.

Instead of doing the wise thing and using Kent from Oz's method for stretching a pen loop, I just forced the pen in and out, thinking the loop would stretch with wear. Instead, it was the threads attaching the loop to the cover that gave way:

I thought it would be a pretty simple job to have a cobbler reattach the loop and make it bigger. I brought my Filo, and an example of the type of pen I use, to my local show repair shop. I thought they could add some elastic to the loop so it could hold thicker pens, but after some testing they found that the rubber grip on the pen would snag on the elastic. They said they could attach extra leather to the loop and dye it to match, but since they would be stitching it by hand, they couldn't match the original machine stitching. They were also concerned that the job would be expensive, but I assured them more than once that I was willing to pay for quality handwork.

They did the job in just about a week, and it came in $5 under the estimated cost at $25.

The original part of the loop is at left, the added leather at right
The pen fits comfortably
Without the proper equipment, my local cobbler couldn't roll the edge of the leather and stitch through multiple layers, so the raw edge of the leather is dyed to match
All in all, I'm happy with the job. For a small repair like a pen loop, I recommend giving your local artisans some business!


  1. Looks like a great job, Nan.
    And I absolutely agree with you as I'm so pleased with the repairs that I had done on my A5 Ascot.

  2. Yep, I agree. I had some stitching repaired on my pocket red Malden, by my local sew shop. It cost me £9, but they matched the stitching so well, that you would never know there had been a repair at all. Marvellous. xx

  3. Wow their dye job looks like a perfect color match!

  4. I agree, excellent job. Has anyone considered not just expanding one pen loop, but adding another one, as the best vintage organizers sometimes have?