Bespoke Shoes Unlaced – a shoemaker's blog

Friday, 12 January 2018

January Shoe Making Course - week 1



Welcome to 2018 good shoe making folk of the world. I don't know about you, but it felt as though the Christmas holidays really flew by! 

We're already five days into our Winter shoe making course and the students are doing a fantastic job. They've skived stiffeners and toe puffs - learning both push and pull skiving to see which suits them best...







They've blocked their insoles...


 and trimmed them once dry.
  
 



Then they drew out their holdfast on the insole and carefully cut it out...








Keeping a note of the various stages and tips on holding tools or measuring as they went...

 

Then they made their holes for stitching


Next it was down to the satisfying job of lasting over the upper, lifting the back to create tension across the quarters, lasting the toe flat then pulling the back down and lasting the heel. Shaping the stiffener at this stage with a French hammer creates lovely contours...


Then on to lasting the lining at the toe...

 

before lasting the toe puff and allowing it to dry.


Finally the toe puff is shaped with the hammer and then a rasp...



before the uppers are pulled over and lasted at the toe.


The toe puff is pasted before the upper is lasted and again, judicial use of the French hammer helps to create a smooth and even pair of toes.

  
 All set for welting!



That's all for this week. Until next week when we'll see the results of the students' 12 days of hard work, happy shoemaking!