Pictish craftsmans camp setup between Hamish Lamley and Thomas Timbrell for a Pictish documentary
Hamish Lamley. Photo by Daniel Fagan.
Pictavia Leather is owned and run by Hamish Lamley, based in Perthshire, the heart of Scotland. All leather products are designed and made by Hamish and his apprentices.
Hamish has over a decade experience in traditional leatherworking, and through years of research and experimental archaeology has worked hard to explore Pictish culture. Hamish has consulted on and starred in various television shows to talk about the Picts and showcase Pictish culture.
I began teaching myself leatherwork whilst bedbound for several years. It provided a way to focus my mind, and gave me a lot of time to pursue another avenue to researching my passion for history and archaeology.
For me Leatherwork is also about function. I use traditional methods because they have also been developed over thousands of years, and are often the most functional and practical. I want my work to outlive me, and so I strive to create the most durable works to combine function and beauty.
Leatherwork is my connection to the past. It is my way to solve problems as our ancestors did, to work at my own pace and see the world as they did.
When I take knife, needle and thread to leather, it is with the same techniques that leather craftsmen have used for thousands of years as I explore early Medieval leatherworking methods and tools alongside their contemporary counterparts.
There is the inherent challenge of trying to solve a problem using only the most basic of tools.
It is my passion to recreate ancient Pictish artwork from the stone carvings and jewllery, bringing the old medium back to life in leather, and to research and produce historic replicas based on archaeological finds.
See my Pictish living history work here.
Another passion is building leather boats. I have helped to build and sail a 40ft long leather catamaran boat in Norway and now build traditional hide coracles here in Scotland alongside other craftsfolk, both of which you can read about in my blog and see in my gallery here.
We also have other Pictish products handmade by craftsmen who are all part of the Pictavia team to offer a wider range.
Apprentice Emma joined the team in 2021 and has been crafting away with us ever since!
Emma is an experimental archaeologist, with a passion for the iron age and scottish history. Emma is a gifted crafter, working with ceramics, weaving, iron smelting, and now leather of course!
All the lovely archaeology inspired pottery in our shop is handmade by Emma, and you can also check out her other work on her own website BogBorn Crafts.
Apprentice Dave has been involved with Pictavia for years through reenactment events.
Dave has a long experience with Scottish reenactment and runs the Reenactment Scotland Network which connects events and traders across Scotland and the rest of the UK.
Daves specialises in 14th century reenactment, broadening our scope of history. His passion for reenactment also has him working on tv and podcasts.
Photograph by Steve MacDougall Photograph by Steve MacDougall
Talking about the Picts on the BBCs Grand Tours of Scotlands Lochs with Paul Merton.
Photograph by Dylan Bier
Building traditional hide coracles with Jane Wilkinson and Peter Ananin