ABOUT THE DESIGNER
Apaulo Hart is a leather fashion designer and owner of the brand Leatharcore. He designs and makes each piece of wearable art by hand. He believes leather and fashion are a powerful communication of spirituality and gender.Growing up as a queer transgendered kid unable to be himself he found solace in the loving arms of "underground" music, fetish magazines, and BDSM. His eclectic artistic experience include graphic design, live painting, tattoo, and performing burlesque on the Spanish Web. His experience and understanding combines unique with durability that has helped him design for drag queens, rock opera, and Queer Fashion Week.
ABOUT THE BRAND
Apaulo grew up in a Christian bubble sheltered from the pop culture of the late 80’s and early 90’s that he longed for. He was also a closeted transgender kid confusing his peers with his androgyny, so he discovered the art of adapting and became a loner class-clown type who knew that if you make them laugh, they will laugh with you instead of at you. He created a style for himself crafted from thrift store items and altered girls clothes. He loved riding horses with his papa and began to nd a love for frequenting tack shops, not slipping into role of “cowboy,” just appreciating feeling connection with animals and the gear associated with it.
At this time he didn’t have any particular role models except the rockstars on a shitty radio he had gotten for free and was hiding in his room. His confusion and curiosity into his taboo sexuality led him to the bdsm world and adult book stores, where his facination with the Bazzare and kink fashion was born. In this world you could design your own fantasy and create your persona with artistic passion. Since he never picked or felt like he belonged to a group, he created his own space, on the outside.
Apaulo always knew he was a highly creative person with strong eye-hand coordination and gift for drawing, as he did for a while, but eventually he grew tired of drawing to prove his abilities to his peers. He narrowed down what he’s really exceptional at by trying a lot of different mediums and by following his own path no matter what other people thought. Graphic design, painting, tattooing, and performance art – you name it and he’s probably done it.
Picking up a job producing leather gear for Mr S Leather in 2014 helped Apaulo develop and ne tune his leather crafting skills, working on his craft everyday, for 40 hours a week. At this point, Apaulo has accrued almost 10,000 hours, which according to the principle of “deliberate practice” is a substantial part of what’s needed to develop expertise in a eld.
While still crafting leather for Mr S Leather, Apaulo launched his own designs and created Leatharcore, his own brand for which he is the fashion designer and business owner.
He found his calling in the art of leather sculpture/wearable pieces of art and sees leather art being a form of spirituality. The draw of working with leather is that it is a breathing material that used to be alive. He believes that to wear an animal skin is a deep human thing that goes way back in history and sees turning skin into art as a way to honor the animal it belonged to.
Leatharcore designs are handcrafted one-of-a-kind pieces that are made to last; quality
and uniqueness are key features of his brand. For a long period of Apaulo’s young life, he generally thought things were impossible. But through working his way toward his dream
of owning a leather fashion brand, he has come to realize that things ARE possible, and he blends that realization with the wild designs his mind is capable of, approaching situations with the mindset that ANYTHING is possible. “You want a dinosaur out t? I’ll make it in leather
for you, let’s go bonkers!” He is not afraid of creating something that could be considered too outrageous and willingly goes places with leather that other people seem afraid to go. Anything from designing a vagina dentate G-string to a design that is a jump suit that is not just a regular harness but also makes you look like a ower.
Aside from unique high quality designs, one key aspect of Leatharcore is empowering marginalized community through visibility, be it for kink or queer folk. Apaulo speci cally wants to design for queer people and focus on transgender and genderqueer needs. “I’m bored
with the male idea; masculine masculinity, or so called hyper masculinity, is over. I want to empower my community; I want queers to look hotter than everyone else.”
Leatharcore designs stem from the many ideas and experiences Apaulo carries in his head. He draws from what he has lived and learned; gender, sexuality, magic, quantum physics, as well as random information that he’s been nerding out on over the years, and he is hellbent on making all of them become reality.