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Posts by bengal-stripe

Let's hope, he removes them all. Those staples will go all through the insole and into the last.If he forgets only a single one, it would be impossible to remove the last.
Anthony Delos does use staples! Solid staples, not tiny tacks.He replaces the lasting nails with staples before he starts stitching. Once he finished stitching he pulls out the staplesIt is possible he does it only with Norwegian construction (the stapled shoe I saw him working on in Harrods was also Norwegian), but he might be doing it for conventional welt too.I presume, most people will have seen this video (how could they have missed the staples):06:00 back section...
Thanks a lot, shoefan!Interesting titbit: In the video at 0:50, the lastmaker uses a 'stock knife' (clogger's knife) to shape the last.Until recently it was only Terry Moore (and his trainee Jon Spencer) who are still working with a stock knife. I have heard from an authoritative source, that at John Lobb (London) none of the current crop of lastmakers has experience in the use the stock knife, although the firm has a knife or two standing around to decorate the place....
There was a newsreel on youtube (maybe it's still there, but I can't find it) where Pathé news visited John Lobb in 1948 or 49. At the end of the short feature, the speaker said in the plummiest voice he could muster:"You can have a pair made for yourself, for around ten Guineas!"Presumably at this moment the whole cinema audience would have oooo-ed and aaaa-ed: "Ten guineas, that's ridiculous!!!"A guinea in old currency equals 1£-1sh-0d, or £1.05 in today's money. Putting...
I remember reading somewhere, before WW1 there were more than 1000 bespoke shoemakers in London. Of course, only a minority would have been based in the West-end (the prime shopping district), other firms would have been scattered all over Greater London. Those outside of the West-end wouldn’t have had the fancy premises, nor the prizes of the top West-end firms. Others might have been mainly shoe repairers who ventured occasionally into bespoke shoes. Presumably it was...
Heel and sole edge have been stained transparently to show-off the various layers of leather in the heel. (The alternative would be a heavy, opaque layer of paint that covers everything.) I presume that mark might be some minor damage when the display model was rubbing against something. It is also possible that the leather did take the stain differently.Whatever it might be, the heel can be easily re-finished.
Here is an article on Mr Porter, featuring eight shoemakers working for eight different shoe factories in England; http://www.mrporter.com/journal/the-portfolio/the-shoemakers/64 Those eight, more or less, represent all the shoe companies left in Northamptonshire. The only notable absence is JL&Co (John Lobb). I deliberately call them shoemakers and not workers in a shoe factory, as these men (and the women who work in the business) take as much pride in their work...
Solito and Avitabile are due to be in London February 26-28 and thereafter either April 9-11 or 16-18 (can't quite remember).
My first sewing machine (not for leather) was one of those hand-cranked thingies (presumably from about the days of WW1). - They're a doddle to control - no motor running away with you.We can ask shoefan - he observed that 'mysterious Mediterranean fellow' at work (so he said).
"Our Ken" (the Cypriot closer) went on a holiday, maybe five years ago and never returned, leaving his customers right in the brown stuff. At the time there were various rumours flying around what could have happened to him. Maybe now the facts are known (but not to me), what actually did happen and why he did not want or could not come back to England.But at the time there was a big confusion in the bespoke shoe trade why that guy had just gone AWOL.For those who haven't...
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