How To Bling Your Own Horse Tack

Bling your horse tack with rhinestones

How To Bling Your Own Horse Tack

Adding rhinestones to your belts, tack and western wear is the fastest way to grab the attention of any judge or audience! With the right tools, you can add bling to your show jackets, belts, boots, chaps, and even horse tack. Here we talk about the basics of applying rhinestones to leather and other western wear.

Gluing Rhinestones to Leather 

Applying flatback rhinestones to leather is one of the most popular topics in the Dreamtime Creations application support department. No surprise! Whether you adding rhinestones to a pair of shoes, or applying rhinestones a leather belt, the effect is amazing. Over the years we tried dozens of application techniques, and have concluded that gluing rhinestones directly to genuine leather is simply not a consistent guaranteed success for long-term wear and tear. For the best long-term results, we recommend using a rivet system so that you don't experience issues with crystals falling off. For faux leather and other synthetic leather materials, standard gluing techniques should work for you just fine.
 
If you aren't concerned about long-term wear and tear a direct gluing to the leather can work, and there are plenty of artists who do get a desired result. Here's our best tips for gluing rhinestones directly to leather:
 
  1. Leather surfaces with a lot of "treatment" to them tend to be the toughest ones to make last. If possible, choose a leather surface that is more raw than treated. Any adhesive you choose to use will work best when it has a porous or rough surface to adhere to. Unfortunately, our experience has shown us that this is simply a try-it-and-see process. In 25 years of trying, we haven't found a sure-fire way to determine which leather surfaces will accept the adhesive, although more treated surfaces tend to be shiny in appearance.
  2. A clean surface is always preferred when applying rhinestones. Use alcohol swabs to clear your surface of oils and other impurities that will cause issues with your adhesive.
  3. You'll have the best luck getting your rhinestones to stick to the leather if the surface is "rough." Use sandpaper to give your application area some grit. If available, a handheld dremel-style tool with a grinder bit may also work for making rough circles on your rhinestone path. Be sure to remove as much debris as possible from your sanding to ensure maximum adhesive.
  4. We've found that E6000 glue tends to work best for direct-leather application.
  5. Use a syringe to apply the perfect amount of glue and minimize the risk of adhesive bleeding onto your leather surface.

Professionals choose to use the crystal applicator tool when applying rivets and rose pins to their leather projects.

 

Applying Rhinestones to Rivets with The Crystal Applicator Tool

The crystal applicator tool allows you to add rhinestones to your leather by gluing to a rivet, instead of directly gluing to the leather surface. This is the most proven technique among professionals for pieces that hold up and keep over time. This hand-operated tool allows you to press rivets into your leather surface, which you can then glue your stones to. 

The Crystal Applicator Hand Tool can be fitted with a number of different dies for applying pressure to a multitude of rivet and rose pin sizes. The most common sizes for applying crystals are the 14mm or 17mm dies.

How to embellish with rose pins using the crystal applicator hand tool:

  1. Screw the adapter piece into the top of the hand tool
  2. Then attach the SS 34 top die into the adapter
  3. Position the lower die into the bottom of the hand tool
  4. Place the rose pin, into the SS 34 die
  5. Position the hand tool where you want the embellishment and press the handles together to place the crystal

 

Crystal Applicator Tool

Crystal Applicator Tool

Price Count Qty
$57.99 Each
$599.99 Dozen (12 pcs)

 

 

Hot Fix Application

Hot fix flatback rhinestones are manufactured with the perfect amount of glue already on the back of the rhinestone, making it easy to attach to dresses, shoes and most other non-leather fabrics. Simply arrange the rhinestones in your desired design, heat the glue for a few seconds using a hot fix applicator tool, and after just a two-minute drying time, your rhinestones will be steady in place.

 

Kandi Professional Touch Hot Fix Applicator

Kandi's Professional Touch Precision Electric Rhinestone Applicator

Price Count Qty
$27.95 Each

Crystal Katana Kit by the Crystal Ninja

Crystal Katana Kit by the Crystal Ninja Rhinestone Pick Up

Price Count Qty
$28.95 Each - 1 to 24

6" Jewelers Wax Stick

6" Jewelers Wax Stick

Price Count Qty
$1.99 Each
$9.99 10 Pieces