Of the Viking legacies left to us from the pages of history, few are as mysterious and lasting as the varied Nordic Runes. In the Norse legends, Odin famously hung himself from Yggdrasil, the world-tree at the center of the cosmos whose branches and roots hold the Nine Worlds. Sacrificing himself to himself for knowledge and power, his reward was the discovery of the Runes, taken from the Well of Urd beneath the world-tree - a source of great wisdom and power - given to Midgard as a source of writing.
The varied runic alphabets used by the Germanic peoples have puzzled scholars for centuries. Many have attempted to unravel their meaning, using the myriad runic poems and other sources as guides. Perhaps the most well-known and well-understood set of runes, today, are the Elder Futhark runes - each rune with its own pronunciation (for writing purposes), but also a deeper meaning within itself. A single rune could often be used as a noun, or to represent a concept, desire, emotion, or state of being.
That legacy is something we are eager to impart to our Viking Vices dice bags and cups! As a special stretch goal of $2,500, our artisans will add an Elder Futhark rune of your choice to every order. (You can select if you wish the rune added to your bag or cup; and, if you’ve pledged for the Family Pack, you may select two of your items to each display a rune.) This secret rune will be hand-painted in black leather dye on your bag or cup in a location of your choosing - a fitting Nordic legacy, and a reminder of the personal meaning your chosen rune has for you (and perhaps a clever way to personally identify your bag among others).
Heirloom Quality Gaming Accessories with Nordic Beauty
The Viking Vices line of dice bags brings the look and feel of ancient Norse huntsman design, and the durability and beauty of bespoke craftsmanship to your game table. Our dice bags have been painstakingly designed and refined to bring you a bag that will last a lifetime (and beyond), with the look, feel, and crafting methods of the ancient peoples. No machines; only hand-cut and hand-sewn materials. This will be the last dice bag you ever need.
Each bag is crafted of soft and supple pre-worked buckskin leather, hand-bound in sinew. It's beautiful, functional, a pleasure to game with, and designed to last for generations. Not only is each piece crafted to order, but comes with our Lifetime Warranty. If your bag ever tears, rips, or suffers any damage from regular use - we will repair it for free, for the lifetime of the bag.
The Viking Vices line only uses pre-worked buckskin leather. Most leather bags are cowhide; they're thick, stiff, difficult to open, and require bulky metallic fasteners. Our deerskin leather has the durability and beauty of traditional leather-work, but is soft and flexible from the moment you pick it up, just like cloth. (It also smells amazing.)
Additionally, all the seams of the Viking Vices dice bags are hand-sewn with sinew in the traditional Norse style (along with many other ancient peoples). It won't tear, rip, or break.
Soft-Side Leather Exposure
Modern leather-workers usually expose the "hard" or "shiny" side of the leather (as it's usually cowhide, and this is best for embossing). But for many ancient peoples, the "soft" underside of the leather was outward facing for personal items, seen as more beautiful, not to mention being much easier to grip or manipulate for a commonly worked items like a bag or pouch. That same beauty, soft touch, and easier grip is utilized in our Viking Vices line.
Most modern quality dice bags have grommets in the cloth for the bag string, to guard against the inevitable tearing of the fabric. But the use of soft buckskin allows us to follow the historical folk or "peasant" styles of the ancient Norse, with simple precision slits for the draw-strings, which are also made entirely of buckskin.
This traditional "leather on leather" approach to bag and drawstring creates a natural friction that keeps the bag closed and cinched tight, without knots or fasteners; but a gentle, slow tug can still easily open the bag.
The Dice Bags
Our hand-crafted dice bags measure roughly 6 inches tall when cinched, with a 4.5 inch diameter base; large enough to hold a dozen sets of polyhedral dice with room to spare. The Viking Vices line not only uses the folk craftsmanship methods and materials of the ancient Norse peoples, but offers customized embellishment options worthy of any Viking at the game table. Every pledge gives you access to at least one embellishment on your bag - though you can pledge for up to three. What's more, you decide which traditional embellishments you want, to make your bag unique to you.
A historical staple of Norse leather-work, metal studs offer a brilliant sparkle to your bag. Available in either nickel or brass. (The Leather Stud embellishment can also be added to a dice cup.)
Affixed to the face of the dice bag (opposite the rear seam), you can proclaim your pride with a Norse or Celtic inspired aged nickel shield token (securely riveted into the leather). Or you can let your huntsman nature show with a traditional tassel carved from deer antler, secured with a brass bead.
Deer Antler Fobs
A very historical embellishment choice, you can choose to attach carved deer antler fobs to the ends of both buckskin drawstrings. Traditionally allowing hunters to locate their pouch strings easily in the dark, these beautiful antler buttons can also be slid to the top of the cinched bag, adding stronger closure for those bags bursting with dice!
Norse Dragon (3 Embellishments)
The legendary Norse dragons were a lasting part of Norse mythology and lore; from Níðhöggr and Fáfnir - to the Midgard Serpent, Jörmungandr. Images of these dragons famously emblazoned Viking ships and shields, to strike fear in the hearts of their enemies. For those wanting that same legendary touch on their Viking Vices dice bag, our artisans will hand-paint (with black leather dye) a classical Norse dragon wrapped around your bag - for the true Vikings among you. (This embellishment counts as 3 standard embellishments for pledge purposes.)
Due to the demand of some of our customers, the Viking Vices line will also offer an optional integrated dice cup! Sturdy, and clad in the same buckskin and sinew binding, with embellishment options; our optional dice cups are designed to slide snugly into our dice bags. Safely store all your dice, with a secure rolling cup for the dice you need in the moment, and then pack it all up easily when it's time to leave the table.
A Lifetime Warranty for an Heirloom Item
Valhalla Gamecrafters hand-makes all of our gaming accessories to be genuine heirloom pieces for your gaming use - painstakingly crafted with materials and methods designed to last a lifetime. But we back up those words with a lifetime warranty for all of our products.
If your Viking Vices dice bag or cup ever experiences a tear, rip, seam damage, or any other damage from regular use, simply ship it to us and we will repair it for free - for the rest of your life. This is our guarantee for a product we want you to always treasure at the game table.
We are a family of dedicated gamers, who also happen have a 25-year successful business tradition in leather-work; specifically in the crafting of historical outfits and regalia for the hobbyist and enthusiast. We are thrilled by the opportunity to combine our crafting skills and experience with a hobby we enjoy so much - and to bring that passion to you.
A successful Kickstarter will allow us to purchase the materials for these heirloom bags in larger bulk, reducing our cost of production - and thus, our retail cost for you. It will make the dream of these bags at game tables around the world a reality, at an affordable cost for the average gamer.
Risks and challenges
We have been delivering hand-made crafts for over 25 years, and have the fulfillment and logistical experience to deliver on time. The only real challenge is that our products are all hand-made to order, not manufactured; and will be crafted and delivered on a first-in-first-out basis. All deliveries will be shipped via USPS Priority, and we will provide you with tracking information to ensure your delivery is properly fulfilled.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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