The Ancient Art
By Steven Edholm & Tamara Wilder
(a slightly revised reprint edition of our book
Wet-Scrape Braintanned Buckskin ISBN# 0-9654965-5-4)
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EVER WANTED TO TAN YOUR OWN LEATHER?
Try this easy to use field guide to braintanning -the same tanning method used for thousands of years by American Indians- and learn how to make your own velvety soft, durable and washable buckskin, all without the use of dangerous or polluting chemicals.
This detailed step-by-step guide is easy to use:
Each step in its own chapter
148 photos and illustrations.
Trouble shooting sections.
Braintanning is a very rewarding undertaking, in terms of both the finished product and the feeling of self reliance and accomplishment that comes with converting a raw skin into the infinitely useful and beautiful material we call braintan. BUCKSKIN is a practical guide to this ancient and intriguing art.
What readers are saying:
"You folks did a fantastic job with the why and how of the entire process. It isn't often a "how to" manual can hold my interest for so long, or be so entertaining. I find myself going back and reading over the same pages again and again."
"absolutely the best thing to come down the pike in a coon’s age. Even though I’ve finished reading it, I keep finding myself coming back to read it again."
"The Wet-Scrape Manual is superb."
"This is a great book, bound to become a classic."
"I think your new book is surely the best thing ever written on braintanning! Whether dry or wet scrape."
"Your book is excellent. We’ve been checking it out and using it."
"I’m most of the way through reading your book and I want to compliment you on a job well done!"
"I’ve read your book at least 5 times and it was very helpful and motivational. Thanks for a great book."
"Your new book is wonderful! The drawings are terrific. What a piece of work."
"I am thoroughly enjoying the book! Well-written and grounded in deep experience, it is fun to read some subtle stuff, confirmed by my own experience, which I’ve never seen in print before."
"I got to look through a copy of your book and had to have one. Thanks for all your work and dedication, it’s beautiful."
"Good job! A lot of good information and it is put together well. It answered a lot of my questions on wet scrape as I have dabbled in dry scrape for several years."
"I finished reading your book. I think it is excellent. It is well written and very informative. I really like the way you included all the other good information."
"Love your book and recommend it to everybody during my lectures." -Larry Kinsella
"Your book looks great! Thanks for all your hard work in helping people like me—a beginner."
"The tone of what you’re saying and what you are saying is exceptional. Bravo on a great work. Feel free to put our stamp of approval on your book"
-John & Geri McPherson Primitive Wilderness Living Skills
"Wow! What a nice piece of work (and I say this not only as a reader, but as a writer, editor, and publisher). Well thought-out and arranged contents, very nice illustrations, history, humor, readable straightforward text—in short, the ‘Bible’ of tanning." -Jim Hamm author/publisher Bois d’Arc Press
"I have now read your book and think it’s great! Finally I can learn a proper way of dressing skins without the use of chemicals and have good, soft results. Your explanations are well thought out with lots of experience and research in your work"
"I’ve seen your book and it’s the best." "Thanks for all your help and the book. I can’t put it down."
"I read my friend’s copy of your book until it was dog-eared. I’m going to get my own copy now. Great book! Technical and smart, yet easy to read, understand and enjoy. Keep the books coming."
Excerpts of Reviews: (original title was Wet-Scrape Braintanned Buckskin)
"…one of the most thorough books on the subject I have ever seen. If you have ever had even a slight urge to attempt to tan your own deer or elk hide, this is the only book you will ever need. Everything you need to know and understand the simple yet gratifying experience of braintanning your own deer hide is covered." -Traditional Bowhunter Jun/Jul 1998
"Crafted with the same loving care and attention to detail as a brain-dressed deerskin, Steven Edholm & Tamara Wilder’s book is extensively researched, extremely well-organized, concise, witty and highly enjoyable reading. Chock full of good, usable information. As a practical guide it will be a go-to reference to tanners and instructors alike for many generations to come. Wish it were available thirty years ago. They’ve done their homework so that you can do your home tanning with a greater chance of success. Very deserving of the high accolades it has received. -Ken Wee Boulder, CO
"The book is well written, well illustrated (both photos and line drawings), and may leave you smiling at the authors’ humor. It reminded me of a good textbook, only ‘funner’. I was just getting ready to brain a couple of hides when a friend sent me this book. I read it before I proceeded with my hides, and I do believe that my end product was better as a result of my learning from this book." -Randy Bublitz
"There is a fantastic new book out on braintanning, the best and most comprehensive I have ever seen."
-Tracks of the Tracker
"Steven and Tamara have greatly added to our knowledge of making buckskin with this new and interesting book. If you can read English, you’ll learn every trick of the craft with this offering…There is too much information in this book to give it the credit it deserves in this small space. Just know this is an absolute must for anyone interested in tanning hides." -Backwoodsman
"If you are willing to supply the work, this book will provide you with the understanding of the techniques, tools, and principles that will transform a raw hide into supple buckskin…. Truly staggering."
-Whole Earth Review Winter 1997
"Any Boy Scout troop would do well to read it and gain a better understanding of how the Indians lived and any hunter would be better off by reading this book because they would then have a better appreciation of all the deer offers. But this book isn’t just for weird folks like myself. It’s for anybody who has an interest in how things used to be done. -Vaughn Terpack
"It is a fascinating book, chocked full of practical information. It’s interesting reading, written in a straight-forward style with a realistic approach to things. We recommend that before you try your hand at braintanning (even if you think you now how to proceed), you pick up a copy of this book and read it thoroughly from cover to cover. This book is the finest most complete treatise on braintanning currently available on the market." -Smoke & Fire News
"The writing style is at once friendly and expert. It is truly a work of both authors. Reading it, you can alternately hear one and then the other speaking. For those who have been a student in one of their classes, you will recognize their keen interest in the student’s success and their easy manner of encouragement…. This book sets a new standard of thoroughness and accessibility, second only to hands-on instruction by these two experts." -Bulletin of Primitive Technology Spring 1997
"I cannot recommend this book too highly. A particular strength of the book is the topknotch pen and ink illustrations of every possible phase of the procedures." -MAPOM News June 1997
"The structure of the deer skin, comparison of wet-scrape and dry-scrape methods of preparing it for tanning, tools, other preparatory steps, and making clothing such as shirts are among the many subjects dealt with as the very experienced and knowledgeable authors take the reader through the tanning process."
-The Small Press Book Review Spring 1997