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

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by DWFII, Aug 23, 2014.

  1. shoefan

    shoefan Well-Known Member

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    The one other thing that is a bit odd to me -- I would expect the line of stitching on the welt to line up pretty much with the sanded part of the upper at the (lateral) heel/waist, since that sanded line seems to mark out the feather edge of the last. Wouldn't you think the inseam would more or less line up with the feather edge? Certainly there is no line of stitching starting at that location. If there is an inseam hidden under the cork, the inseam is way inboard of the feather edge.

    I wouldn't think super glue, since it is for non-porous materials, but perhaps some other adhesive?
     
  2. ThunderMarch

    ThunderMarch Well-Known Member

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    Am certainly thankful for the time and effort you take to answer the questions asked on the thread. Not just by me but everyone else as well.
    Of all the threads on SF, I probably enjoy this one the most.
    And with regards to the highlighted statement, I honestly think that the difference is felt. It might not revolutionise the way the very-factory-dominated way things are like now, but I think (and hope), slowly, one person at a time, things might change.
     
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  3. DWFII

    DWFII Well-Known Member

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    The heel/waist appears to be nailed.

    Not sure the following is to pertinent to your remarks but FWIW, although I whip the waist on cowboy boots, many makers don't. The inseam ends at the end of the welt and so whipped, nailed or pegged there are no stitches in the waist as a continuation of the inseam. It is a traditional construction on this type of footwear.

    My initial thought is that the waist was intended to be pegged but if there is no inseam...if the maker thought cement was adequate all by itself...pegging or even nailing in the waist would seem contrary to intent and beside the point.

    Superglue will work on leather and I've seen "shoemakers" / cobblers use it in all manner of applications during construction.

    As an aside, FWIW & FYI, superglue is often used as a high gloss, extremely durable finish (like a varnish) on treen such as pens and pepper mills, etc..
     
    Last edited: May 8, 2016
  4. asturiano

    asturiano Well-Known Member

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    I think that this shoemakers pegs, but in the hypothetical case case he doesn't do it. Is there any other way (rather than glue) to fix the sole?can he do a sort of blake stitch in the waist? I think he should need to use a sort of insole later.
    Does it make sense what I am saying?
    Anyhow I would try to get more pictures showing the same process on a different shoe.
    Btw wouldn't you need quite a lot of excess lather folded over if you were to peg? Would the peg need to pierce sole+leather+insole to be effective?
    I hope I am not talking rubbish....
     
  5. Zapasman

    Zapasman Well-Known Member

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    I did not have time to read all threads. I just wanted to say that before I buy a shoe (sometimes after), I want to know a bit more about their construction, materials and techniques used on it. It is true that I have posted pics of differents shoes without mentioning the brand in the first post (I think DW is right to say this thread is to discuss tehniques no matter who the maker is in order to be more objective). The problem is that after I post a pic and ask for opinion, many members PM me to to know the maker and I can´t handle that. This time @ ntempleman asked me if the pic shown was a GG shoe so I was about to say that it was an italian RTW maker, but my PM box was already full of messages so I was force again to mention the maker and stop the avalanche. The discussion took a path I did not wanted to. Feel sorry for it.
     
  6. Zapasman

    Zapasman Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for answering my pm´s, you good and secret man.
     
  7. DWFII

    DWFII Well-Known Member

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    Why should you feel sorry about it? You did everything right. It is others...or maybe in this case (as so many other instances) just one other...who made it into a federal case.

    I don't care if people post the name of the maker although it makes me hesitate to critique or answer a question if the answer might not go down good. I just think that it kind of destroys objectivity ...at least for some people who have a penchant for being defensive.
     
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  8. DWFII

    DWFII Well-Known Member

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    Well, hypothetically, yes it could be Blaked. It could also be nailed. But many makers think that cements are enough. I don't agree. I don't think a case can be made that relying on cement is anywhere near best practices.


    I don't think we know how much leather drafted into the waist...the cork pretty much obscures that area.

    But you're right, no rubbish, to do a peg job correctly the pegs must secure the outsole as well as the vamp and vamp liner to the insole and probably to the last itself ...at least the points--that's what "peg floats" are for.
     
  9. rbhan12

    rbhan12 Well-Known Member

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    @Zapasman I think mentioning the maker is very important to these discussions. For us non-shoemakers, knowing which makers perform certain techniques and practices at a given price is extremely relevant, at least for me.

    Until two days or so ago (whenever you discussed it), I had no idea what stitching aloft was or that it wasn't considered best practice. From what I can interpret, carving a holdfast is best practice, but I still don't understand what it's function is (maybe so that the welt leather sits more seamlessly along the insole, removing the need for a lot of cork?). I thought Bonafe, Vass, Meermin and other HW makers, were all more or less working with the same basic principles but varying things like quality of components, stitches per inch, etc. Then again, all that makes sense when you consider the price of a shoe.

    In summary, I think the maker should be identified. It's very pertinent to the discussion and provides insight to potential buyers (most of us reading this very thread). As long as we don't get into continually bashing cost-saving methods, we can hold insightful and meaningful discussion.
     
  10. Zapasman

    Zapasman Well-Known Member

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    Yes I understand. But I think that would be much better to do it in the own shoemaker/brand thread. I always do that, but most of the time nobody cares about it and I feel like a stranger, so I come here to get the answers without trying to mention names (at least that was my intention).
     
    Last edited: May 8, 2016
    2 people like this.
  11. DWFII

    DWFII Well-Known Member

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    All those are fair points. I would only observe that the name of the maker could be revealed in a PM or perhaps after the issues have already been aired. Again, why stir up defensiveness? I've seen too much of it here over the years from people who really don't know much about shoemaking but are diehard fans of a particular brand. It's almost like you were kicking their dog.

    As for the holdfast...I have to reiterate...it's function is to hold the seam "fast" (securely). Whether the inseam is sewn aloft or in a channel the leather between one side of the inseam and the other--from the insole to the welt, IOW--is a holdfast.

    And again...at risk of giving it a good name :devil:...gemming functions as a holdfast.
     
    Last edited: May 8, 2016
  12. chogall

    chogall Well-Known Member

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    Revealing makers is detrimental to those with commercial interests but highly beneficial to potential customers.

    There are not many who is in the trade and wiling to dis or critique other makers in a public forums tho there are certainly bad bloods between them.

    Besides, short-cuts and cost saving techniques are embedded in every craft and tradition.

    Caveat emptor.
     
    Last edited: May 8, 2016
  13. rbhan12

    rbhan12 Well-Known Member

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    Well, identifying the maker might encourage the shoemaker/expert/critic to be less sharp-tongued (though I don't think either of the two prominent ones in this thread are)
     
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  14. DWFII

    DWFII Well-Known Member

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    Yes, I'm sure you're right. Of course, it would almost certainly mean that nothing of significance would be posted, either. Objective analysis, education...what there is of it...would come to a screeching halt--for fear of offending someone's else's unfounded opinions, choices, or being seen as critical or "sharp tongued."

    I've already said...and done long since...that I would avoid / hesitate to critique the work of a specific maker.

    Maybe we could make this thread a a "safe space" where people and ideas we didn't like or want to hear were driven off campus.

    :lurk:
     
    Last edited: May 9, 2016
  15. DWFII

    DWFII Well-Known Member

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    I suspect that anyone with a real, in-depth knowledge of craft...and shoemaking in particular...would take issue with that.

    Any objective study of the history and evolution of the Trade reveals that over the centuries the best work gets more intricate and that the best makers look for ways to make their work better, not quicker or cheaper. Over the course of those same centuries shoes evolve from foot bags to turnshoes to handwelting to 64 stitches to the inch. Anyone of those earlier iterations would suffice even today and yet shoemakers were constantly pushing the envelope.

    Sure there will always be dabblers and folk desperate to avoid the commitment and the work; desperate to achieve expertise and recognition without having to earn it. Every field of human endeavor...even posting on an Internet forum...is rife with people like that.

    But in the end, they don't make a difference. In fact, taking that course is the surest path to historical, big-picture mediocrity, anonymity and ineffectiveness (as in ineffectual) .

    "Caveat emptor" indeed...I'm not sure as to what you mean by that esp. in the context of this discussion. Maybe it would just be better to say if you so incurious and so indifferent to how the world works, you don't get to whine. But that also applies to who you listen to and what you embrace by way of knowledge and even "first principles" (goes hand in hand with "best practices").

    IOW, caveat emptor--if you love short cuts and cost saving techniques...you deserve them and nothing else.
     
    Last edited: May 9, 2016
  16. chogall

    chogall Well-Known Member

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    On one hand, you claiming best makers are looking for ways to make their work better.
    On the other hand, you claiming the shoes made 100 years ago have finer and better work, 64spi and the ilks.

    These two claims of yours do not reconcile.

    You can go on all day harping about best your shoemaking practices, but it benefits no customers without identifying, reviewing, or using other maker's work as examples.
     
  17. dopey

    dopey Well-Known Member

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    So . . . is Ant Man worth renting?
    I am not really excited about it, because "who cares" but the consensus is "it's great" then I don't mind renting it.
     
  18. DWFII

    DWFII Well-Known Member

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    Of course they do. You just need a better, more informed, perspective. The best makers have always been a small small minority...but it is they who set the standards and create the Traditions and drive the evolution of the Trade forward. They are still with us...although with a limited perspective you never see or acknowledge them.

    But that limited perspective...one that is mesmerized by "short cuts and cost saving techniques"(shiny objects, the "magpie eye")...cannot abide,and indeed dismisses, all such people and all techniques that require effort and years to master and that forward the Trade. And so they are lost...both the people and the techniques. And the materials that make "best practices' possible.

    And among people who extol cost saving and short cuts in particular, but in the general population as well, the factory mentality reigns and factory work becomes the new gold standard. And good work and best practices devalued and lost to the ages.

    That's just another way of instigating and provoking conflict and confrontation.

    I myself have talked endlessly about the strengths and the reasons to do specific techniques. That's the positive side--leadership by example. I've also been forced to discuss the weaknesses of other techniques simply because some people refuse to accept the fundamental mechanics and the logic behind those techniques. But unlike a lot of people here, either way I have laid out the logic, in detail. That right there is more than any ten of my critics have done. More, I have posted photos and drawings--both my own and drawn from historical documents written by recognized masters. I've even sallied forth into the philosophical foundations and principles that inform the craftsman's perspective.

    Most of what I have set out has been rejected by people who are not craftsmen or shoemakers; people who want their un-informed opinions validated and need to be "stroked" constantly; people who feel like they are entitled to opinions and recognition that they have not earned. People, IMO, like yourself.

    As you say "caveat emptor."

    --
     
    Last edited: May 9, 2016
  19. bdavro23

    bdavro23 Well-Known Member

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    Haven't seen it and cant say I am hugely compelled to, but who doesnt love Paul Rudd?

    (Furthering this off topic conversation in the hopes Chogall will stfu and forget about this thread)
     
  20. ThunderMarch

    ThunderMarch Well-Known Member

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    I found that after I discovered the "block user" function, the threads became much more enjoyable. You should try it, it's good.
    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: May 9, 2016

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