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Come read our origin story. Find out what we are currently up to at our "Otter Blog" including a list of events we will be attending.

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Lon Ron

A Little Bit About Otter Necessities

Otter Necessities is the result of imbibing too much stale vegamite while driving a jet-propelled snowblower at ridiculous rates of speed. Then the wombat appeared in the middle of the road. When the snow settled, we were left with one very flat wombat skin, a bill for snowblower repairs, and no cash. So we went into business . . .

We made a "kid harness" and leash for our son, who had just learned to walk. It was great for places like the zoo and science fiction conventions. People kept asking us where we got it, so we made a few, made some belt pouches, and started trying to sell them. After two years we finally sold our first kid harness. Fortunately, we'd been selling plenty of other things in the meantime, refined our production techniques, and expanded our product line.

We take pride in the fact that all of our leather goods are handmade. Since we do the work ourselves, what we sell reflects directly back on us, and we pay attention to quality. Seams are sewn either by hand, with a heavy-duty sewing machine, or laced with real leather lace (no plastic!). We cut our belts out of hides ourselves, so we can cut them looooong, and avoid weak spots. When we decorate the leather items, we cut and tool the designs in so they will last, unlike mass-production stamping. Being engineers, our products are a little over-designed. We use heavy leather so things will wear well and not wear out. Also, most of our leather is water-resistant, by one method or another, so you don't have to worry about the weather.

The woven things we make are for fun. When we need a break from leather working, we weave. The weaving is done mostly on an inkle loom, but sometimes we play with card weaving. Usually we use fine cotton, but sometimes we weave with heavier cotton, and occasionally wool. We also do kumihimo, a Japanese method of braiding done on a stand.

Because all of our leather and woven goods are handmade, and leather is a natural material, we can't always guarantee we'll have a particular item available in any color. Except black . . . we've always got black. The selection of merchandise shown is just that: a selection of the most popular items we try to keep on hand at all times. The particular item shown in the photos may have moved on to a new home, but we can make another one like it. We also have a large selection of celtic-style knotwork that we've drawn ourselves, and we can come up with knotwork to fit on your custom work, or use a design you provide. We'll try making all sorts of things.