Shop Etsy

Stitching the Artisanal Football

Jun 7, 2011

by Pazcal

Pascal_author.jpg

MP4 YouTube | Vimeo | Blip.tv Subscribe in iTunes

Paul Cunningham, a former researcher for the National Baseball Hall of Fame and photo editor for Major League Baseball, is also a craftsman of the most classically American sort, handcrafting leather footballs and baseballs. These sturdy leather works are not only superior playing balls; they’re also meticulous works of art that tap into two of America’s richest and most beloved sporting pastimes.

LEMONBALL_stills001-blog.jpg

Lacing a football

This video found its inspiration in the paintings and illustrations of Norman Rockwell, who channeled American life and rituals through his own hands. In many ways, it’s an ode to the football — to both the care it takes to make one, and the place it holds in the American psyche.

LEMONBALL_stills008-blog.jpg

Whether you remember throwing a lovingly worn pigskin out in the backyard, or indulging in seven-layer dip in front of the family set, there is no denying that pointy-oval-shaped hole in your heart.

Watch More Etsy Videos

LEMON BALL vintage style baseball,  Brown leather with red stitches, Ball, Sports, Play, Handmade (LB-Cxl-Red)
LEMON BALL vintage style baseball, Brown leather with red stitches, Ball, Sports, Play, Handmade (LB-Cxl-Red)
LemonBall
$40.00 USD
Big Blue Leather Head football,  Sports, Play, Handmade (F1-BB-Red)
Big Blue Leather Head football, Sports, Play, Handmade (F1-BB-Red)
LemonBall
$150.00 USD
LEMON BALL Vintage style lemon peel baseball, tan with white stitch, tan leather, Sports, Play, Games, Handmade (LB-Gtan-Wh)
LEMON BALL Vintage style lemon peel baseball, tan with white stitch, tan leather, Sports, Play, Games, Handmade (LB-Gtan-Wh)
LemonBall
$40.00 USD
LEMON BALL lemon peel style baseball Brown with white stitches, leather, baseball, handmade, Ball, Sports, Play (LB-Cxl-Wh)
LEMON BALL lemon peel style baseball Brown with white stitches, leather, baseball, handmade, Ball, Sports, Play (LB-Cxl-Wh)
LemonBall
$40.00 USD
LEMON BALL Burgundy chromexcel leather baseball with black stitch, vintage style, Handmade, Sports, Play (LB-Burg-Blk)
LEMON BALL Burgundy chromexcel leather baseball with black stitch, vintage style, Handmade, Sports, Play (LB-Burg-Blk)
LemonBall
$40.00 USD
Custom Engraving Service
Custom Engraving Service
LemonBall
$25.00 USD
Leather Head ANGUS No. 5 Rugby Ball.
Leather Head ANGUS No. 5 Rugby Ball.
LemonBall
$150.00 USD
Leather Head Black Onyx Football Handmade (F1-Onyx)
Leather Head Black Onyx Football Handmade (F1-Onyx)
LemonBall
$150.00 USD
LEMON BALL Burgundy chromexcel leather baseball with white stitch, vintage style, Handmade, Sports, Play (Lb-Burg-Wh)
LEMON BALL Burgundy chromexcel leather baseball with white stitch, vintage style, Handmade, Sports, Play (Lb-Burg-Wh)
LemonBall
$40.00 USD
LEATHER HEAD Handsome Dan American Leather Football, Leather, Handmade F1-HD-Red
LEATHER HEAD Handsome Dan American Leather Football, Leather, Handmade F1-HD-Red
LemonBall
$130.00 USD

45 comments

  • MegansMenagerie

    MegansMenagerie said 6 years ago

    Great post! Thanks for sharing!!!

  • TheLittleRagamuffin

    TheLittleRagamuffin said 6 years ago

    These are extraordinary. I have many friends from Glen Rock, it's nice to be familiar with the place these works of art come from!

  • thelittlemarket

    thelittlemarket said 6 years ago

    Wonderful post!!! just in time for Fathers Day!!

  • NangijalaJewelry

    NangijalaJewelry said 6 years ago

    AMAZING! Love it. Congrats on the feature :-)

  • EcoChicHandKnits

    EcoChicHandKnits said 6 years ago

    Wonderful! I've admired this store for a long time! Beautiful craftsmanship!

  • MilaKeln

    MilaKeln said 6 years ago

    cool shop

  • tatimaia

    tatimaia said 6 years ago

    That's so cool! I love this kind of Etsy sellers. They really keep the handmade alive! Very, very inspiring... ^^

  • steampunkfunk

    steampunkfunk said 6 years ago

    So cool! My boys found that football on here back in March and have been drooling/pining for it ever since :)

  • jammerjewelry

    jammerjewelry said 6 years ago

    Loved your article, thanks!

  • Crafterall

    Crafterall said 6 years ago

    Another, beautiful, nearly wordless masterpiece by Pascal. Bravo! Oh, and pass the dip!

  • BlackStar

    BlackStar said 6 years ago

    I love LemonBalls shop!

  • WeeBindery

    WeeBindery said 6 years ago

    What a fabulous post and shop! I love it! I have to keep your shop in mind for my 3 sons and their birthdays and Christmas! Great work! :D

  • kilas

    kilas said 6 years ago

    Love this on so many levels.

  • LittleWrenPottery

    LittleWrenPottery said 6 years ago

    I always get confused about football and football here in the UK. I always think leather craft looks such hard work! Love the nostalgia portrayed in the video...

  • mobina1122

    mobina1122 said 6 years ago

    This is a great feature and as a previous customer (3 baseballs, 1 custom football ... plus another custom football on the way), I can say Paul's stuff is extraordinary ... almost a shame to play with them because they are so beautiful and perfect as show pieces, but impossible to put down once you have them in your hands!

  • HibouCards

    HibouCards said 6 years ago

    Love the Lemon ball :)

  • Parachute425

    Parachute425 said 6 years ago

    What an art! Bravo Paul. And another great video from Pascal.

  • blainedesign

    blainedesign said 6 years ago

    I have purchased two items from Paul and they are BEAUTIFUL, perfectly made, and absolutely beloved by the people who received them! I think his are among the most satisfying and remarkable gifts on Etsy.

  • babyjewlz

    babyjewlz said 6 years ago

    Awesome product! I have purchased a baseball before. I would love to get one of the footballs just for show.

  • accentonvintage

    accentonvintage said 6 years ago

    Extraordinary talent! Great article!

  • KettleConfections

    KettleConfections said 6 years ago

    Didn't know I could find something like this here.. perfect for father's day.

  • somethinspecial

    somethinspecial said 6 years ago

    My dad, a Bears fan his whole life, would love one of these. Great post!

  • TheScarfTree

    TheScarfTree said 6 years ago

    This is amazing that you have kept the craft alive and make these right from scratch! Collector's items! Nothing could be better than the original! Well done for pursuing! All the best to you! Thanks for sharing!

  • Mclovebuddy

    Mclovebuddy said 6 years ago

    that's very cool.

  • myvintagecrush

    myvintagecrush said 6 years ago

    Wow! What craftsmanship, thanks for sharing!

  • artworksbycarol

    artworksbycarol said 6 years ago

    When does football season start again!!!

  • DezreenDesign

    DezreenDesign said 6 years ago

    Beautiful!

  • Iammie

    Iammie said 6 years ago

    Cool!

  • AmberGypsySky

    AmberGypsySky said 6 years ago

    now that was a cool process to watch

  • handmaderomance

    handmaderomance said 6 years ago

    so wonderful to see this! not an item i've ever thought of how it was made, let alone this beautifully. thanks for sharing.

  • glasfaden

    glasfaden said 6 years ago

    Awesome video!

  • NutfieldWeaver

    NutfieldWeaver said 6 years ago

    This was truly interesting! I'm letting my Dad know about this...

  • HadaraTLV

    HadaraTLV said 6 years ago

    Very interesting

  • theroyal

    theroyal said 6 years ago

    cool

  • BozenaWojtaszek

    BozenaWojtaszek said 6 years ago

    I can watch artists at work for hours :) Great post!

  • s3bastien

    s3bastien said 6 years ago

    Absolutely beautiful craftsmanship - thank you for letting us peek into your process!

  • sunshineartdesign

    sunshineartdesign said 6 years ago

    Wonderful craftsmanship!And nice video!

  • QWorks

    QWorks said 6 years ago

    love the handmade football!

  • VeronicaCarlton

    VeronicaCarlton said 6 years ago

    Great! Thanks for sharing: ) Veronica Carlton Anthem Az

  • cooldesac

    cooldesac said 6 years ago

    I'm trying to persuade my husband to join...Will show him this....Thanks

  • CarolsClovers

    CarolsClovers said 6 years ago

    beautifully done!

  • GemdropsoftheFalls

    GemdropsoftheFalls said 6 years ago

    WONDERFUL items! Thank you for sharing your talents with us.

  • GemdropsoftheFalls

    GemdropsoftheFalls said 6 years ago

    We definitely need more men on Etsy!

  • pottersong

    pottersong said 5 years ago

    This is great!! I really like this!! I am glad i found this shop:)

  • LovesParis

    Patti Sundik from LovesParisStudio said 4 years ago

    I'm impressed. Must show the video to my football player husband who also was an engineer at some factories before they all went overseas...beautiful work..I can almost smell the leather. Patti. Now I know what to buy for my hubby this Christmas!

Sign in to add your own