Rawhide has been used for centuries for braiding and to make saddle trees, horse tack, drumheads, shields, lampshades, moccasin soles and many other projects. It also makes great thongs and laces. Rawhide is very rigid because it has not been tanned, only de-haired and cured. When soaked in water it becomes pliable, allowing it to be molded or shaped. During the drying process, rawhide shrinks, stiffens and generally retains whatever shape it was given.