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

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

  1. OzzyJones

    OzzyJones Senior member

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    Pretty fugly one at that!
     


  2. vmss

    vmss Senior member

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    so is that the average practice to tack the back of the heel for lasting? also in hand lasting do they also tack the heel?

    and what is your opinion regarding this practice of tacking the heel?
     
    Last edited: Sep 27, 2015


  3. DWFII

    DWFII Bespoke Boot and Shoemaker Dubiously Honored

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    Who knows what "average" is? I've seen it often enough to call it "common" but not universal.

    As for my opinion...I mentioned what I thought in post #495. I don't think the shoe is significantly weakened because of it, however.

    Maybe another shoemaker...like nicholas templeman...can weigh in with another perspective/opinion.
     


  4. vmss

    vmss Senior member

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    Do they also tack the heel in handlasting?
     


  5. DWFII

    DWFII Bespoke Boot and Shoemaker Dubiously Honored

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    Again, some do, some don't. In fact, I mostly associate tacks of that sort with hand lasting (although that's primarily what I know) but I 'm assuming that the photo you posted is from an RTW shoe.
     


  6. vmss

    vmss Senior member

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    Yest its rtw shoes.
     


  7. wengxiah

    wengxiah Well-Known Member

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    hi DWFII, do you think ' almost 1 year after sending the feedback of the test shoes but still haven't even seen a single pixel of a photo of my shoes under making, considering the maker love posting photos on instagram' reasonable? and the making promised me 5 times "shoes will be shipped next month" and all proved to be mosquitoshit
     
    Last edited: Oct 19, 2015


  8. DWFII

    DWFII Bespoke Boot and Shoemaker Dubiously Honored

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    I don't think I can talk to what other bespoke makers do. If the outfit you're dealing with is RTW, well, that may be another story, but still not my remit..

    In the past...when I had a four year waiting list/backlog...I have taken orders, required the customer to sign a contract acknowledging that backlog, but still had them come back me six months later wondering where their shoes were.

    Beyond that, for the bespoke maker there is just so many variables that are result of not being large enough to order in quantity or direct from the tannery, or simply not having any desire to automate your production.

    I had a customer a couple of years ago that wanted a pair of burgundy oxfords brogued and gimped. I sent him some French calf to approve and when he did I bought the leather. Burgundy is, generally speaking, a hard colour to come by unless you're buying from the tanner. Some years, as the fashion cycle turns back on itself, are better than others.

    In any case, when I had finished gimping and broguing, and went to assemble the shoes, I noticed that the leather had tiny cracks between the perforations. I could not in good conscience use those pieces or deliver a shoe with such problems.

    I called and talked to the customer and sent him photos of the cracking. I offered to find another piece of leather (from a different source and start all over again...no additional cost to him. I wanted to make those shoes. I had spent hours and hours laying out both the broguing and the gimping so that perfs and points of the gimping would be perfectly located and matching from one shoe to the next.

    The customer declined (he had undoubtedly lost faith in me--I had a liver shutdown in the early part of the year and probably lost 6 to 9 months on the schedule) and I returned his money.

    It was no one's fault. But I tell you that story to illustrate that even with the best of intentions...stuff happens.

    And as a result, I cannot, will not, judge.
     
    Last edited: Oct 19, 2015


  9. ThunderMarch

    ThunderMarch Senior member

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    Hi @DWFII , sorry to bother again.
    I have been spending the past few weeks poring through leather thread, and I really appreciate the amount of information being shared there.
    It's also got me thinking a little, and I wanted to ask this, which pertains to identifying shoes that are hand welted.
    Some of the more senior members on SF, and J Fitz as well, were saying that without taking the shoes apart, one way to tell if the shoe was handwelted or not, was to look at the "inside" of the shoe at the "exposed" part of the insole visible to us, and look for tell-tale "pulling" or tug marks on the insole, that is a sign of the tension on the insole that occurs when the welt is being stitched on. I know that you also mentioned that this was not a foolproof method at picking out the handwelted shoes, due to numerous possible variables that may occur during the welting process.
    Well, I'd recently had a look at some of my supposedly handwelted shoes, hoping to pick out the above-mentioned feature. I realised that for one particular maker, the insole was completely covered up. I don't have a photo offhand to illustrate this. But what I mean is, most makers stick on a small thin piece of ? leather insole that bears the maker's name / emblem / brand. In most cases, this piece of leather is pretty small and a good two thirds of the actual insole is still visible. But for this maker, the piece extended down the entire length of the sole to the toe box, thus completely covering up the insole. I'm wondering, why would a maker do this? Is there something to hide would you say?

    Thanks in advance.
     
    Last edited: Oct 24, 2015


  10. DWFII

    DWFII Bespoke Boot and Shoemaker Dubiously Honored

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    No worries.

    It could be as simple as personal preference. Or there may be something cosmetic that the maker is wanting to cover.

    If the maker says they are handwelted, then they probably are.

    Having said that, for many years I never put any kind of sock or heel pad in the shoes or boots I made. My teacher made the point to me, right at the beginning, that the only reason to put a heel pad in, for instance, was to cover nails that were clinched against metal plates on the last. Since I don't leave any nails in the shoes or boots I make, heel pads are not necessary. And because they have to be cemented or glued to the insole, they tend to be a little occlusive. But even among very good bespoke makers, most...I suspect the majority...use nails to attach heel stacks. So a heel pad is the default. And a full length sockliner is just an extension of the pristine leather of the heel pad.

    In later years i have put heel pads in just because it is less fuss than having to explain to customers why they are not there.
     
    Last edited: Oct 24, 2015


  11. ThunderMarch

    ThunderMarch Senior member

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    Once again, thanks for your input. It is, as always, much appreciated.
    Damn, how embarrassing, so it's simply called a "heel pad".
     
    Last edited: Oct 24, 2015


  12. DWFII

    DWFII Bespoke Boot and Shoemaker Dubiously Honored

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    If it only covers the heel seat, it's a "heel pad." If it covers the heel seat and the waist to the tread area, it's still a heel pad albeit an extended heel pad....although some may refer it it as a "partial sockliner."

    If it runs the full length of the insole it is properly a sockliner...or, sometimes affectionately, :)crackup:) just "sock."
     
    Last edited: Oct 24, 2015


  13. ntempleman

    ntempleman Senior member

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    Over here they're socks, either a seat sock or a through sock. All the nail holes from lasting the upper round the heel looks a bit tatty, so a sock looks better, cosmetically. If it's a casual shoe there's usually a through sock fitted, because they larger opening means you see where the sock ends and exposes the insole, and also to tighten the shoe up a bit.

    There's 3/4 socks too, you can guess what they look like. And they're awful, unless you like the end of the sock rolling up like a cigar from pulling your foot out.
     


  14. ThunderMarch

    ThunderMarch Senior member

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    Thanks guys!
     


  15. DWFII

    DWFII Bespoke Boot and Shoemaker Dubiously Honored

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    October 25th--Saint Crispin's Day and the Shoemaker's Holiday.

    "Trowl the bowl, the jolly nut-brown bowl,
    And here, kind mate, to thee;
    Let's sing a dirge for Saint Hugh's soul, and down it merrily."

    Happy St. Crispin's Day.

    [​IMG]

    Slainte mhor!

    --
     
    Last edited: Oct 25, 2015


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