We only stock Touch Pro cork, this superb quality cork is backed with woven flannel-like fabric (see left-hand side) or canvas-like fabric which gives it a padded feel and durability and stability.
Well, in a word, it's lovely! High-quality cork is beautifully smooth and pliable. It has the handle of leather. It's almost warm to the touch and has a strokeable peach-fuzz softness. This cork fabric is made in such a way that it will retain these properties over time. It will not dry, become brittle or flake with age. As a fabric, the handle and drape are similar to leather, vinyl and thin sheet rubber. It is water, dirt and crease resistant and incredibly earth-friendly. Plus, it is vegan-friendly - no animal products are used in the manufacture or composition of cork fabric.
What is fabulous about cork is its natural pattern and its ability to take on colour dye. Corks colours are richly saturated. The intense colours and the thicker, smooth handle of cork combine to make this fabric look and feel very high-end.
Cork may look and feel unique, but it is actually pretty easy to sew with. It's pretty much the same as sewing with real/faux leather/vinyl. You just need to remember a few things which I will cover here. After you've tried sewing with cork, I'm sure you're going to fall in love with it!
You will need:
1. When making cork straps I think it's best to make them from 2 layers of cork cut carefully to the same width and stitched wrong sides together. As cork fabric doesn't fray (and the raw edges look neat) you don't need to worry about exposed raw edges. This method makes a perfectly nice-looking and strong strap that is not as thick and unwieldy as a (bias binding style) 4 layer strap would be. So, cut your 2 cork strips to the same width as your ring or snap hook and to your desired length plus 7.5cm (3") for folding over the ends.
2. Bring the 2 strips wrong sides together and take your time to match all edges perfectly. Use sewing clips, glue or double-sided tape to hold the strips together.
3. Set the stitch length to 3. (When sewing with cork you can actually sew with standard length (of 2.4-5) stitches, but I think that as cork fabric is thick, standard length stitches can look a bit small in the cork fabric). Stitch all around the short and long strap edges.
4. Thread one of the snap hook rings onto one of the strap ends. Look at your rivet, how tall is it? The height of your rivet will determine how many times you will need to fold your strap end - a well-fitting rivet has sufficient layers to fill the entire rivet height (and a punched hole that is slightly smaller than the rivet shaft width). Fold the strap end (over the ring) 4cm (1 1/2") to the wrong side. Fold the strap end over again to the wrong side (so the first folded edge nearly touches the hook ring).
5. On the strap to the wrong side (at the strap end), make a mark in the folded strap end. Mark the centre of the folded strap end (I like to make the mark by pressing a rivet half into the cork. Use an awl to pierce a starter hole into the mark you have just made. Pierce through all layers.
6. Use a hole punch (I'm using a Prym Vario punch) to make a hole through all layers of the folded strap end.
7. With the trigger hook attached, pop the rivet in through the punched holes. If you like you can pop a dab of glue into the rivet shaft before screwing the halves together. I'm using a Chicago rivet as they look awesome, they are super-strong and you don't need to use a hammer.
8. As you can see, the strap raw edges are neat (and as cork fabric does not fray, the edges will remain neat). Very nice!