Von Bondage

Von Bondage Through the Ages...

Alysha Lockyer
tumblr-banner.jpg

How Von Bondage Came to Be!

 

If we travel back in time to the mid 1990s and travel to Philadelphia PA, we will find a young Miss Alysha Lynn fresh out of art school, heavily into the punk scene, and very tight on cash. I used to wear leather dog collars since high school, I just LOVED being in a collar! It felt so beautiful around my neck, and I felt so secure and protected. I did not realise I was a switch back then and usually played quite a Dominant role with men in general, except in my relationships at the time. I loved collaring others and always wore very Dominant collars on myself. Being tight on cash, I decided to start making my own collars and with no experience or teachings, I waltzed into the Leather Supplier down in Old City at the time, and told the staff that I needed to get leather and materials for making collars and belts. They gave me some advice, sold me a leather shoulder, sold me some tools and hardware, and I was off back to my apartment slicing, dyeing and hammering away.  The result of my first collar was atrocious and I wore it for 2 years straight with absolute pride! The buckle wasn't even on correct, and I had cut the strap with an X-acto blade. The rivet spikes weren't hammered in straight and the chain had rusted, but I had my FIRST HAND-MADE COLLAR. From that point forward I knew what I wanted to do in life...

Fast forward 6 months, and I had gotten quite good respectively. I purchased a much needed strap-cutter, bought leather dye to make different coloured collars. Had an anvil donated to me by my friend Ben and practised my little tits off day and night. Eventually I was good enough to sell on commission to stores like Zipperhead and Veem on South Street which was quite a lively street with tonnes of shops open till about 1am on weekends. Lots of alternative lifestyles hung out down there and I started making my first sales!  I began to make restraints and bondage accessories as well. I used to work in a cute little sex shop and had a few contacts for shows and events to go and sell my stuff at tables. I continued this for about 2 years and then moved to the UK!

Once in the UK, I shipped my gear over and started making my collar and restraints empire again. Manchester hosted Fetish Events, and Vintage to Fetish was a wonderful shop that I sold my line to. Lynn (who now owns an amazing corset shop called Kiku , that creates handmade corsets) was the Manageress who gave me a chance, and started to buy from me. It was there I came up with a name for my company called Oh! Bondage!  

 old letterhead!!

old letterhead!!

 

In 2005 I started to sell online which allowed me to sell retail as well and sell personally to customers. I created a website and sold on ebay, and continued to sell to companies and shops.  In 2011 my Husband and I decided to move to the USA, and it was then that I changed my name to Von Bondage. In 2012 we moved overseas and registered my business as Naos Leathers with NY State and re-branded as Von Bondage®. I started to sell on Etsy and created the current website you see today. I strictly sell retail now and stopped wholesaling. I registered Von Bondage® as a Trade Mark in early 2017. 

My business has taken off from my meagre beginnings of just selling 1 type of leather collars and restraints, to offering over 15 different leathers and vegan options to choose from!!! I have a multitude of colours, as well as different types of hides. I also include 3 different vegan options. My hardware choice is also on the rise! I used to only work with nickel and solid brass, but now I offer stainless steel, black poly-coated steel, and introducing COPPER!!!

Von Bondage is forever growing and adding new designs and leathers to my repertoire. I also encourage customizations and designs that suit my customers tastes. I look forward to a long and prosperous future working with my customers. 

retrowhipSUB.jpg

Choosing the Perfect Leather for your BDSM Collar & Restraints

Alysha Lockyer

Which Material to Choose for Your Bondage Gear?

 

leathers-full-shelf.jpg
 vegan line including PVC sheeting and IZIT "Leather"

vegan line including PVC sheeting and IZIT "Leather"

So you've finally decided to purchase your 1st BDSM collar or restraints set only to become bombarded with a huge variety of different leathers and materials to choose from. Now what do I do?? Do I want traditional black or a splash of colour? Do I need soft or firm? Furry or vegan?? Choosing the correct leather or material doesn't need to be over-whelming. There are first some basic questions you will want to ask yourself first before diving into the depths of leather or non-leather choice. The first and easiest question is "Do you WANT leather??"  Many BDSM shops, including here at Von Bondage, cater to both leather junkies and vegans alike. I have 3 choices of material for vegan Doms and Their submissives which spans from shiny PVC to realistic polyurethane called IZIT Leather for a genuine leather feel. 

 

If you decide you would like leather, then the next question you want to ask yourself is if you would like something soft or firm?? Just because a leather is soft and form-fitting does not mean that it is inferior in any way to its stiffer counterpart. It's just giving a different feel to the play experience. Bridle Leathers and Latigo Leathers are firm and stiff like belt leather. They are both used in the horse industry for riding tack and have a wonderful durability to them that can last for many, many years when given proper care with the appropriate cleaners.  If you like to play in water sports, these leathers also can withstand getting wet, but do keep in mind that the metal used on your bondage collars and restraints can corrode if not wiped dry afterward. Latigo and Bridle leathers are also known to be very sleek and smooth with very little nap on the inside. Personally here at Von Bondage, I hand bevel and brandish all of the edges on my Bridle and Latigo leathers to ensure a rounded edge that wont cause chafing, so if you decide you would like the smooth stricter feel of Bridle or Latigo Leathers and are shopping about, make sure to find out of the BDSM store you are purchasing from bevels the edges of their stiffer leathers. This could be a huge deciding factor for purchasing, because unbevelled edges can be quite sharp on the skin.  The soft leather choice can be equally rewarding as the stricter firmer leather. Von Bondage offers many soft leathers and all of them are quite thick because they are comprised of 2 leathers bonded together with cement to add thickness and colour. These type of soft leathers are known as chrome-tanned leathers.  Soft leathers also do not need to be bevelled or brandished and they are very easy to care for since they do not need waxing or oiling to keep them supple. Just a simple glycerine spray is suffice when you want to clean your bondage gear.  The soft leathers have more stretch to them as well so there is room to tighten over time.  If you are new to the Game, then there is also the option for fleece lined sheepskin collars and cuffs. These are super soft (and warm!!! so usually a winter choice) and a lot of fun for beginners or for people who love the soft feel of the cuffs in contrast to the firmness of the whip or paddle! Here at Von Bondage I offer 2 types of fleece bonded to different colour bullhides.

 bridle and latigo leathers

bridle and latigo leathers

 the sheepskin fleece ranges

the sheepskin fleece ranges

Question 3 is usually colour choice. There is an abundance of colour choices for all of the leather restraints collars and bondage accessories out on the market, so deciding can be tough.  Do you want to go full on with a bright vibrant colour, or would you like just an accent of colour for subtlety? There are tonnes of sites out there that can offer you a whirlwind of colour choices, but here at Von Bondage I offer 5 colours and a few different combos of black mixed with a colour accent for a peek-a-boo trim affect on the edges of the collars and restraints.  Choosing the right colour for your play sessions is purely down to mood and aesthetics and it can be fun to have several play-sets in different leathers and colours to fit the mood or event.