We had a great photo sent to us from Sighisoara in Romania of the Shoemakers Tower which was built by the guild of shoemakers to help form the city walls. It was a joy to see some of our shared heritage.
This week we started our October instalment of our classic 12 Day Shoemaking Course - twelve straight 8 hour days of intense, physical shoe making
It is a great experience and we would recommend it to anyone.
Day 1 saw our intrepid students sharpening their knives; skiving leather toe puffs and stiffeners and blocking their insoles
And here is a tutorial from the blog about skiving stiffeners
|The beautiful classroom at Unit 50|
Day 2 was spent preparing the insoles - trimming the edges and creating the holdfast/feather with the knife.
This is precise work and the students did really well
|Here is a little trick we teach to stop them cutting the holdfast too deep - it works a treat|
|Holdfasts all done|
Day 3 sees the shoes start to take shape with the lasting process. They insert the stiffeners and toe puffs and pull the uppers onto the lasts using lasting pliers and nails
Here is the first part of our blog posts about lasting.
|Here is some paste going onto the toe puff which has already been shaped . And you can see the lasted shoe top left|
|Toe puffs drying|
Day four and we started welting. This group has been very able and impressive, so well done guys. Welting is seen by many students as the most challenging part of the whole process, but it is also very satisfying
Here is a tutorial from our blog about making threads.
Today will see them finishing the welting and moving on to putting in the shanks and cork filler ready to stitch the soles on.
All the tools and materials you can see in this blog post are available from our webstore
We will report back next week with progress. Until next time, happy shoemaking!