It’s been just over a year since we featured Carson Leh’s Deluxe TECH2 BMX and its leather upholstered saddle that so excited the bicycle blogosphere. Carson is a multi-talented designer who has applied his appreciation of traditional style to furniture and industrial design, sustainability consulting, photography and, finally, traditional shoemaking and custom leather saddlery.
Shoemaking is a skill less-oft heard of nowadays, despite a popular resurgence of interest in traditional crafts, and Carson has combined his cordwaining skills with his love for BMX riding to produce the brogued saddle installed on his Deluxe TECH2. That saddle created so much interest, from all genres of cycling—road, cyclocross, MTB as well as BMX—that he implemented a Kickstarter project to enable a short production run of similarly-styled saddles, under the banner of Alden Seats.
Carson’s aim is to produce a hard-working saddle created with leather from the USA’s most environmentally friendly tanneries, built tough to withstand the rigors of life on (and off) the road, with a style that wouldn’t be uncomfortable inside the most exclusive gentleman’s club or boardroom. There will initially be three seat shapes, with four leather colors and nine distinct designs. Styles will include a retro road and track seat, a Dutch style comfort seat and a slim pivotal-style BMX and MTB seat.
Alden Seats needs to raise $5,700 on Kickstarter in just 12 days time to actualize the project. As an incentive to pledge your support, Carson has a range of gifts to reward your donation, such as limited edition seats, shirts and posters. Most notably, if you can donate $100, you’ll receive $100 dollars towards a saddle from the first production run. This basically means you pre-purchase a seat with free shipping anywhere in the world. Check out the Kickstarter project page here, and watch the video of Carson and his leather saddlery below. Hopefully every boutique cyclery around the world will be inspired to carry one of Carson’s saddles and pledge a donation.