I can’t believe I’m posting this a few scant weeks since I posted a photo blog about my beloved workroom. Yesterday, April 5 2013, our house was consumed by flames. Everything was destroyed. As this blog is dedicated to my leathercraft hobby, I’ll try to keep this blog post focused on leathercraft.

In this photo, my husband steps over the rubble where my workbench used to be. You can still see the granite that used to top my workbench around the level of my husband’s left knee. Right now, we’re both still a little in shock, and I can’t help but feel that all we have to do is drive home and everything will be as it was.

The fire started very quickly. I was out grocery shopping when my husband heard a BANG and a “whoooosh” type of noise from where he was working to repair a computer upstairs. He herded the cats and the dogs down to the main floor and then the basement, and managed to get them to safety by placing the cats in a backpack, wrapping a leash through both dog’s collars to better control them simultaneously, and escaped out the basement patio doors. After depositing the animals in the shed he ran back to collect our turtles (also in the basement), and on his way out dashed into my workroom (beside the turtle room) and swept everything from the top of my work bench into a bag, grabbed my laptop and fled the building to safety.

In this photo, everything my husband swept off the table into the bag was dumped into a blue bin (the bag had a hole and we didn’t want to lose anything).

In this photo, we’ve arranged everything on the wood coffee table in my in-laws’ basement. He managed to save a lot of the custom-made and hard to get cross-border items (we’re Canadian, and most of the best handmade Western Leathercraft tools are made in the USA). Some of my Barry King tools, one of my Bearman mauls, and custom swivel knives would have been difficult to replace in a reasonable amount of time. While this may sound like a bad Fed-Ex commercial, he also managed to save the last new collar I had almost completed (also on the bench). All it needs is for its hardware to be sewn on. With an order to CraftJapan for new sewing tools and thread, I should still be able to send this one out, even if it won’t quite arrive on time.