Klum House Featured in Seamwork Magazine

At Klum House, we're starting off the new year feeling honored and grateful to have been featured in Seamwork Magazine! The article is a professional profile of Ellie Lum, with a great overview of her personal and professional journey, from founding R.E.Load Bags and studying education theory at UC Berkeley to starting Klum House, a DIY skill-building workshop space in Portland. As Katie Whittle writes, "Ellie specializes in teaching rugged and utilitarian sewing techniques to novice sewers, helping them master the sewing machine as a versatile tool. But, Ellie isn’t just helping others learn new sewing skills, she’s creating a social movement." 

"When Ellie Lum moves to your town, the place changes just because she lives there. She builds things that are bigger than her that leave a lasting impact. Her energy, enthusiasm, and confidence is infectious, and she refuses to accept that anything is impossible. When talking to Ellie, you can’t help but think that sewing can change the world.
[...] "In modern society people aren’t used to interacting with products that are not in the finished state. We are losing our sense of power to make things happen, because we don’t see the process. It contributes to low self-esteem and low self-confidence in your ability to make things happen in the world," Ellie explains. "If someone can make something with their hands, in a few hours, they see their ability to change things and make things. It builds self-confidence."

The feature also includes some of Ellie's favorite sewing and bag-making tools, as well as step-by-step instructions for how to install leather straps with rivets, which we've also shared below. We highly recommend checking out the full article here!

Installing Leather Straps with Rivets
Tutorial featured in Seamwork Magazine

Here's What You'll Need

  • Leather strapping
  • Hammer
  • Two pairs of quick-set metal brads
  • Leather hole punch


Select the hole size that matches the circumference of the rivet’s post.


Determine rivet placements and bring the leather strapping under the hole punch. Hold the leather in place with your dominant hand.

Once the hole punch and the leather are aligned, bring both hands to the punch’s handles, and “squeeze until you hear the crunch.”

Repeat this step for the additional rivet placement markings on the leather and fabric.


From the right side of the leather strapping, insert the rivet’s post into the punched hole.


Align the post with the exterior fabric’s punched hole. Push the post through the outer fabric, through to the wrong side (inside) of your bag.


From the inside of the bag, insert the rivet post into the rivet cap.


Lay the rivet-bag-strapping sandwich strap down, on a hard surface. Ellie uses a tree stump and mini anvil, for this step

Permanently set the rivet by hammering the rivet cap in place a few times, with a regular hammer.

A correctly installed rivet will have a slight divot into the leather from the right side.