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Shoemaking Techniques and Traditions--"...these foolish things..." - Page 70

post #1036 of 1710
Thread Starter 
Well, the broadest definition would have it as simple as an almost arbitrary area / section / "strip" of leather around the edge of the insole designated to hold the inseam stitches. A maker could just draw a somewhat inset line around the edge of the insole and begin the inseam stitch along that line, emerging at the edge of the insole. This is "stitching aloft" where the stitching is exposed and on the surface.

The way it is more commonly done is that a channel or vertical cut is made in the insole along that line mentioned in the previous paragraph and the stitches sunk into that "inside channel." Sometimes a wedge of leather is actually removed in order to facilitate the entry of the awl into the channel.

Additionally, another vertical channel is cut somewhat closer to the edge of the insole and a rectangle or square of leather is removed from the cut to the edge of the insole. This leaves a "rabbet" or rebate along the featherline of the insole. In fact, this rabbet is called the "feather." This is where the awl (and the inseaming thread) coming from the inside channel will emerge prior to entering the lining, upper and welt.

The "strip" of leather sandwiched in between the feather and the inside channel is called the "holdfast." It is what "holds" the inseam "fast"...or securely.

And if you go back to post #93 (the post that sleepyinsanfran linked to is #94) you can see the evolution of the welt and handwelted inseams and the "f" illustration shows the simplest (and earliest) form of holdfast...as describe in my opening paragraph above.

edited for punctuation and clarity
Edited by DWFII - 3/26/16 at 7:47am
post #1037 of 1710
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by sleepyinsanfran View Post

^ I'm not a person with extensive knowledge - but cutting an insole rib was the original goodyear welt method (as DWF and perhaps others have mentioned)
from what I understand, teh fact that some makers "handwelt" by splitting the insole and stitching the uppers to an upturned rib by hand (instead of creating a holdfast) is either a matter of lack of knowledge or in some cases for historical reasons

I suspect...although I don't know for sure....that that specific approach was unknown and or unused prior to the invention of the GY welting machine / process. It seems to have been more or less unique to GY.
post #1038 of 1710

Shoemakers uses nails, pegs, or stitching to attach and secure upper to insole heels.  I know @DWFII advises against using nails as they rust. Some makers prefer pegging while some don't use pegs at all. 

 

For stitching, I've seen two different methods. The latter of which is also used if makers decide to welt all the way around or to attach rand by stitching. Picture linked from DWegan Instagram as he makes one of the

 

What are the rationale in choosing between the different methods?

post #1039 of 1710
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by chogall View Post


What are the rationale in choosing between the different methods?

I don't know that there is any rationale...except the rationale that it is better than nails. I suspect it is just what you're taught.

I, myself use the method in the first photo. my thoughts have always been that it allows me to lay the skived margin of the heel stiffener flat on the insole--that way it acts and functions just as any other overlapped seam. And everything stays relatively flat.

I have often been tempted to try the method in your second photo. I have in the past been worried that it leaves the stitching a little too close to the edge of the insole in the heel area and thus more vulnerable to whatever...pegs or nails...is used to attache the heel seat and the outsole and heel stack. But of course I suppose that can be varied according to where the holdfast is located.

I've also wondered if less of the heel stiffener has to be turned over the insole...simply because stitching like that gathers the leather--upper and stiffener--into an upright configuration. This could not only get a little bulky if the stiffener were incorporated, it does raise some concerns about the amount all this "gathered" leather will be above the surface of the holdfast, nevermind the insole. That too might be just a matter of trimming. But it does no more good to create a cavity in the heel area than in the forepart.

In any case, those are the issues that concern me and have held me back from trying the second method.

Many times perfectly good techniques are more dependent on the mindfulness and care of the maker than the mechanics of the technique itself.

I wouldn't cast aspersions on either method in the right hands.

edited for punctuation and clarity
Edited by DWFII - 4/3/16 at 4:11pm
post #1040 of 1710
Is it possible to do a blind welt around an entire shoe? I know this is the preferred method of welting for a bespoke shoe's waist, but why don't more shoemakers prefer blind welts around the front part of the shoe?
post #1041 of 1710
Yes it is possible, often seen on ladies work where it helps give the impression of narrowness. Why isn't it done on men's shoes more often? Probably because it looks a bit cheap - a well stitched and fudged welt, a well ironed sole edge, these things show the skill and the craft in all its glory. A blind welt doesn't look much different to a shoe that's been glued together. It also has a weird roundness to it, so that the soles look a bit like the hulls of tiny boats.
post #1042 of 1710
...and.... I want my uppers and feet to be protected too.
post #1043 of 1710
Quote:
Originally Posted by JermynStreet View Post

Is it possible to do a blind welt around an entire shoe? I know this is the preferred method of welting for a bespoke shoe's waist, but why don't more shoemakers prefer blind welts around the front part of the shoe?

 

Yes, I have a pair. 

 

Less durable as there will be no protruding welt serving as bumper.  Also harder to make; not all outworkers/makers have experiences in making shoes that style.

post #1044 of 1710
Quote:
Originally Posted by DWFII View Post

I don't know that there is any rationale...except the rationale that it is better than nails. I suspect it is just what you're taught.

I, myself use the method in the first photo. my thoughts have always been that it allows me to lay the skived margin of the heel stiffener flat on the insole--that way it acts and functions just as any other overlapped seam. And everything stays relatively flat.

I have often been tempted to try the method in your second photo. I have in the past been worried that it leaves the stitching a little too close to the edge of the insole in the heel area and thus more vulnerable to whatever...pegs or nails...is used to attache the heel seat and the outsole and heel stack. But of course I suppose that can be varied according to where the holdfast is located.

I've also wondered if less of the heel stiffener has to be turned over the insole...simply because stitching like that gathers the leather--upper and stiffener--into an upright configuration. This could not only get a little bulky if the stiffener were incorporated, it does raise some concerns about the amount all this "gathered" leather will be above the surface of the holdfast, nevermind the insole. That too might be just a matter of trimming. But it does no more good to create a cavity in the heel area than in the forepart.

In any case, those are the issues that concern me and have held me back from trying the second method.

Many times perfectly good techniques are more dependent on the mindfulness and care of the maker than the mechanics of the technique itself.

I wouldn't cast aspersions on either method in the right hands.

edited for punctuation and clarity

Thanks! Reason I ask is that some makers use both methods when making shoes. So just wondering if there is any rationales behind their choices.

The bottom one looks to have the same stitching/sewing pattern to 360" welting sans the welt/rand at the heels.
post #1045 of 1710
I don't know that there is any particular rationale, just people doing what they find fastest and/or best (with one exception, as noted below). I've also seen a simple whip-stitch used (a variation on the first method), and two different implementations of the first method -- one using only one thread, the second method using both threads.

The second method (a continuation of the line of stitching, using a true shoemaker's stitch), which I personally prefer, is also the method that, I believe, would have been used traditionally, when the heels were sewn one, rather than nailed/pegged. The thread used to sew the heel on would have used the outboard line of heel/insole stitching to secure the heel, i.e. the heel thread would loop under the existing thread before going through the heel.
post #1046 of 1710
The bottom one is how everyone in the UK does it, or nearly everyone at least. The top one is how the French seem to prefer doing it.

If a firm seems to use both methods, it's probably because you're looking at the work of two different outworkers rather than any conscious decision to choose one over the other for certain styles.
post #1047 of 1710
Quote:
Originally Posted by chogall View Post

Shoemakers uses nails, pegs, or stitching to attach and secure upper to insole heels.

I hope no one's using nails or pegs to secure an upper to the insole with, because that doesn't sound too good.
post #1048 of 1710
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by ntempleman View Post

I hope no one's using nails or pegs to secure an upper to the insole with, because that doesn't sound too good.

Many manufacturers do use nails to secure the upper to the insole.

And, sad to say, there are all too many 'bespoke" makers who, taking their cue from the manufacturers and the relatively commonplace-ness of such techniques...and in the absence of instruction in Traditional techniques...also use nails. Esp. in the heel seat. That's what bottom plates on lasts are all about, after all.

Not telling you anything you don't know but..."we are not alone." lol8[1].gif
post #1049 of 1710
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by shoefan View Post

...is also the method that, I believe, would have been used traditionally, when the heels were sewn one, rather than nailed/pegged. The thread used to sew the heel on would have used the outboard line of heel/insole stitching to secure the heel, i.e. the heel thread would loop under the existing thread before going through the heel.

Might be just a quick explanation but I'm not sure that is entirely correct. You need to talk to Master Saguto about this. It is my impression that if this method was used (seems to me there was a rand involved), that the stitches were way out at the edge of the insole.
post #1050 of 1710
Quote:
Originally Posted by DWFII View Post

Might be just a quick explanation but I'm not sure that is entirely correct. You need to talk to Master Saguto about this. It is my impression that if this method was used (seems to me there was a rand involved), that the stitches were way out at the edge of the insole.

Yes, I stand corrected about that detail. IIRC, there is a rand, it is folded over (not 100% sure about that part) the heel is sewn, the rand is hammered to hide the stitches. I've always wanted to see it done, since I've had a hard time entirely understanding/picturing the various descriptions of the method.
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