Bespoke Shoes Unlaced – a shoemaker's blog

Thursday, 18 August 2011

Day 10 - Shoemaking Course

So, day 10 arrives and the students are finishing their heels. Most of the day was spent on this and everyone finished building them.  Final lifts; cutting the heel breast; putting on the top piece; and cutting the seat.

Cutting the heel breast

Nailing the top piece

One very important step is to check the level of the heel using a glass board. Put the top piece under and check how the heel is sitting. We also check the heel spring at the toe. The tip of your finger should just fit under the toe.

Next comes rasping, glassing, and sanding.



People ask why we don't use a wheel for this. Well, there are two things. One, it is traditional to do it this way, and we sell our shoes as a traditionally made craft product, so we should do it properly. Two, if you are making shoes on your own, it will take a long time to make buying an expensive machine worth it, assuming you can afford to buy it in the first place.
And anyway, we don't shy away from hard work - ask the students!

Tomorrow will see finishing start in earnest. Some speedy students are well on the way to finishing this already, but most will start tomorrow. The final push to the summit!

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