Family Tradition

Growing up in Colombia, I knew my family had alway been involved in farming and cattle ranching.  Most weekends of my childhood were spent in the family farm outside Medellín, where I happily wandered through the hills and groves of that beautiful rural area.

The ranching history was lost on me when I bought a cheap leathercraft kit sometime in 2014.  I got busy making helmet shields and radio straps for fire department friends, until one day my mom told me the story of my grandfather and his ranching days.

Grandpa with hat by house
Grandpa on a horse


Grandpa had a brand made in the shape of a wine glass, reasoning that the small and simple shape would hurt his cattle less than a more intricate brand.  He also liked his booze, so the brand was fitting for him.

Grandpa's cattle brand

It was a no-brainer at that point to incorporate his cattle brand into my maker's mark, bringing together the family tradition and my newfound love for leathercraft.

TJ Leather maker's mark

Fire Service and Beyond

These days the majority of my work still revolves around helmet shields, which is where I can truly express my creativity and pride in the profession of firefighting and the craft of leatherworking. 

Station 10 engine shields

But creativity is a strange thing, for it can lead us down some interesting and unique paths.  I've started dabbling in bags, totes, purses, and the like, trying to bring the fire service ideals of ruggedness, functionality, and pride into the everyday carry realm.

TJ Leather wallets

Whatever the future brings, I will continue to stay true to the craft while developing this passion for handmade, durable goods. After all, it's a family tradition.


Workshop with shield