Hi, I'm Jenifer. Welcome!
2020 was a rough year for everyone. As a long-time homeschooling mom of three, my schedule doesn't usually have a lot of leeway. But stay-at-home orders gave me back the time I needed to focus on my business and grow it in a way that hadn't previously been possible.
I built my website (supplementing the Etsy shop I've had for several years), added products to my shop, and started writing and sourcing the materials for Leatherwork 101 (the course in a box that teaches middle and high school students the basics of leatherworking).
In January 2021 I was just about to finalize the details of Leatherwork 101, in preparation for opening it to registration, when I decided to tweak my branding a little. I'd named my business five years earlier, when I still wasn't completely sure of the direction I was taking it, and five years later I was no longer loving the name. My first thought was to change Oak Hollow Cottage to Oak Hollow Leatherworks.
As I considered the small name change, I realized that it was the perfect time to completely change my business name. If I hurried, I could update my domain, logos, and social media before I launched Leatherwork 101. If I waited till later, when I had more time, it would cause confusion and more problems. So after a couple days of research, a couple weeks of spending too much time on the computer and not enough in my leather studio, here we are.
True North can be found using a compass and points us in the direction we should go. I lacked that sense of direction when I started my business, but now I know where I'm going.
The compass rose can also be the sun, rising or setting behind the mountains. The start of a fresh, new day. The end of tough day. Either way, it's the hope for better things.
Mountains have always been an important part of my life. I love spending time in them and exploring their towering majesty. We live just outside Shenandoah National Park, and while the Blue Ridge Mountains aren't as tall as the Rocky Mountains we used to live near, they're still beautiful mountains.
Today, I'm happy creating with leather and waxed canvas and helping others learn the basics of leatherworking.
Sign up for my newsletter (at the bottom of this page or click the tab on the right side of the page) to receive a discount on your first purchase and to be notified of shop updates.
Have a product idea you'd like to see come to life? Suggestions on how to improve a product? Use the contact form to let me know. If I use your idea, I'll send you a handmade leather item as thanks.
I'd also love to see pictures of my products in use. Tag @TrueNorthLeatherworks on Instagram or Facebook and I'll share your photo in my feed.
I look forward to producing durable goods that will be enjoyed by you, your family, and those around you.
Jenifer Smith February 1, 2021