Bespoke Shoes Unlaced – a shoemaker's blog

Thursday, 3 November 2011

Making movies

No red carpet or flashing bulbs...but we starred in two new mini movies last week. The first was our own little production showing something of the making process.- the film played on a loop on a '70s style TV during our in-window experience in Vigo street - and the second was created by photographer Nick Hands - he of the beautifully detailed photography for the Balvenie Award nominees - as part of his 'smallworks' series.

Our own movie is a snapshot of the many stages of shoemaking and can now be seen on You Tube. Editing it has whetted our appetite for producing our own shoemaking DVD.

So, fellow shoemakers and shoemaking fans what do you think? Would you be interested in a DVD that takes you through each stage in making a shoe and shows you how to hold each tool and use it to maximum effect? Please let us know whether you think it would be helpful...perhaps to supplement the intensive courses we run or, for those unable to make it to New York or London, to replace it...distance learning for shoemakers? Why not? We could even do specific masterclasses for certain techniques like a bevel waist, blind welt or storm welt.

So many of our students say how much easier it is to learn to make shoes by watching us and then doing it for themselves that perhaps this is the ideal way - a virtual one-to-one - and then we could provide support via Skype or email....hmmmmm food for thought. What do you think?

artisan images

Nick Hand's photofilms (see above) feature a variety of craftspeople from across the country including yours truly. The images and interviews were collected over a period of time as Nick travelled around the British coast by bicycle (see the pics above) and, more recently, as part of his commission for Balvenie to capture the nominees for the 2011 Masters of Craft.

Masters of craft: Deborah Carre

The images he captured on his bike tour form a wonderful photo exhibition and highlights from the people he met are now available as soundslides on his website and in a wonderful book entitled Conversations on the Coast. My personal favourites are the tools series of images - unsurprisingly there is craftsmanship in the tools themselves - and the photofilm of Will Brown Outfitters in Norfolk...a lovely business producing simple, beautifully made clothing...and somewhere I would like to visit.

Fear not... we will be catching up on a few shoemaking projects next week so until then, happy shoemaking!