1. And... we're back. You'll notice that all of your images are back as well, as are our beloved emoticons, including the infamous :foo: We have also worked with our server folks and developers to fix the issues that were slowing down the site.

    There is still work to be done - the images in existing sigs are not yet linked, for example, and we are working on a way to get the images to load faster - which will improve the performance of the site, especially on the pages with a ton of images, and we will continue to work diligently on that and keep you updated.

    Cheers,

    Fok on behalf of the entire Styleforum team
    Dismiss Notice

**The Official Shoe Care Thread: Tutorials, Photos, etc.**

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by Mr. Moo, Feb 28, 2011.

  1. phantom_lord

    phantom_lord Member

    Messages:
    11
    Joined:
    Oct 3, 2010
    Hi, just looking for advice about a pair of shoes I have. They're a fairly new pair of Loakes, I've probably polished them more times than I've worn them. I was out one wet day and they have picked up serious stains. The leather has risen in a ridge where it's gotten wet. I've never had this happen a pair of shoes before. Is there any way I can repair them?


    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
  2. Al in Philly

    Al in Philly Senior member

    Messages:
    332
    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2012
    Location:
    Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
    Shined up my Alden 901's last night. Interview for a business development position today at my company. Not trying to leave any dollars on the table!

    [​IMG]
     
  3. OzzyJones

    OzzyJones Senior member

    Messages:
    3,006
    Joined:
    Dec 4, 2012
    Location:
    Here
    
    BOOM! Good job!
     
  4. dlind

    dlind Senior member

    Messages:
    235
    Joined:
    Jun 1, 2012
    Location:
    London
    I have had the same happen to my shoes, no stains but the ridge. After a few polishes it's not as noticeable but I would also very much like to know if it can be removed somehow.
     
  5. Lear

    Lear Senior member

    Messages:
    681
    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2007
    @dlind: had exactly the same happen on a pair this year.

    The facts:
    *Wore leather soled shoes in shallow but very salty snow/slush
    *Took them off that evening and left to dry, but forgot to wipe off salt for 24 hours
    *Found exact same ridges you have there, in exactly the same position, as if the water had seeped upwards.

    What I did:
    *Applied Saphir Hiver salt stain remover according to instructions. Diluted vinegar works as well. Do a search here or Google.
    *Used the back of a desert spoon to press down on the dried leather. Don't know if I should've done this as soon as I took them off wet (with same warning as below)
    *After lessening some of the raised ridge, I applied conditioner - Renovateur in this case - and did same spoon trick again. Be aware, I don't know if softening the leather (with Renovateur) before doing this leaves it more prone to ripping/tearing from the pressure of the spoon. Someone here can advise on this. Maybe I was lucky. The spoon motion was a gentle stroking using common sense for rate/pressure/direction.
    *Kept wearing the shoes, with the occasional gentle repetition of above spoon trick + conditioner.
    *Looking at them now, can't see any raised ridge. It worked for me.
    Edit: Forgot to say, the shoes were a very light colour like yours, with conditioner and hardly any wax. Would've stripped otherwise.

    What I think but ain't sure about (this is not advice, and am happy to be corrected on):
    *If you messed around with the burnished sole edges, the edge might have become porous. This is what burnishing with hard wax or dedicated edge dressing protects against. Simply applying dye hasn't the same degree of protection.
    *If you stripped the shoes, you might not have pushed wax/conditioner back into the welt to re-wax the threads etc.
    *The same stripping and hard rubbing might have caused the leather to become porous. Indicated by some patches becoming very dark when wetted with the stripping product or even rain water.
    * Your soles might just be porous.
    *This particular shoe leather upper might simply be very porous and sponge like anyway. Being such a light colour, every imperfection will be noticeable.

    In this last paragraph, I'm just thinking aloud. Would like to know if my assumptions are correct. Looking forward to other opinions on this.

    Another edit: You can use the spoon for other things too (not just eating). If you've mirror shined the toecaps, then find a tiny crack upon flexing your foot:

    1.) Stick a small teaspoon in a mug of boiling water
    2.) Wait for it to heat up
    3.) Press the teaspoon onto the crack and rub gently in a small circle. You have to remelt all the layers, as they originate from the base layer, but then redistribute as best you can.
    4.) You'll have to use your common sense and realize that you're trying to gently smooth the wax out, leaving as little work for you to re-mirror as possible.
    5.) Quickly and while the wax is still soft, gently flex the toecap while holding the heel firmly with other hand. Keep on doing this for 10 seconds. Just don't over exaggerate the amount by which you flex it. This might prevent the same thing happening again.
    6.) Very quickly - as the warmth will now be on the way out - take a piece of cotton cloth and softly 'swirl to level' on that spot.
    7.) Put the shoes on and walk around the house.
    8.) Check for cracks, and either cry or prepare for re-mirroring.

    N.B. The above is a last ditch attempt to repair a slight crack caused by flexing. These cracks usually happen near to an edge or abutting leather. Not intended for major damage. If you mess it up, you might be in a worse position than you were with the crack. It all depends on how smoothly you can get the wax to reset. More art than anything. It might not work for you and simply crack again, but has for me. You'll now have to re-mirror, but that's much easier than stripping back to base layer.

    Just get a feel for the wax.

    Lear
     
    Last edited: Apr 19, 2013
  6. dlind

    dlind Senior member

    Messages:
    235
    Joined:
    Jun 1, 2012
    Location:
    London
    @Lear,

    Thank you very much for your clear and helpful advice I will certainly give it a try. Just for clarification it is not my shoes on the pictures, they belong to phantom_lord who posted above. I might also add that the shoes that where affected where RM Williams boots and now the ridges are far less noticeable and you can't really see it unless you look close. I know consider them a part of the patina of a well used shoe.

    David
     
  7. Lear

    Lear Senior member

    Messages:
    681
    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2007
  8. alexSF

    alexSF Senior member

    Messages:
    1,439
    Joined:
    Dec 10, 2009
    Location:
    Italy
    Last edited: Apr 19, 2013
  9. Lear

    Lear Senior member

    Messages:
    681
    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2007
    Cheers AlexSF. They do make a lot of stuff :eek:
     
  10. roquesoon

    roquesoon Senior member

    Messages:
    231
    Joined:
    Sep 20, 2011
    Location:
    NYC
    Cross post from the random question thread:

    Does anyone in the NYC area have empty Saphir renovateur containers that they would be willing to part with? (the short glass ones, square on bottom, round opening, in case there is any confusion)

    I am a musician (bassoonist) and usually use shot glasses to soak my reeds in (anyone who took band in high school is probably familiar with the concept). I was doing my shoe polish routine when I realized that the renovateur container would make a perfect reed soaking apparatus. It holds a decent amount of water, has a wide opening, but is squat, and made of sturdy glass, so it will resist getting kicked over and shattered (I have been through a lot of shot glasses...)

    Just 1 would be great, 2 even better, and 3 would be like Christmas.

    I'll pay for shipping, or I can pick up in person or whatever if you're close to/in Manhattan. And certainly if someone further away has one, I'm interested as well, just figured I might save the trouble if you are in NYC.

    Thank you, gentlemen!
     
  11. glenjay

    glenjay Senior member

    Messages:
    748
    Joined:
    Feb 13, 2009
    Location:
    Bend, Oregon
    

    Yes, it can be fixed. You can emulate this problem with a porous kitchen sponge, by only getting half of the sponge wet and letting it dry. The cellular area that is wet expands, but when it dries it does not match the exact same compactness as the area that remained dry. It's not less or more necessarily, just different. If you then soak the whole sponge and let it dry, everything is consistent.

    The same is true with shoe leather. When you discover a ridge like this take a damp sea sponge (soft sponge) and soak the surface of the entire shoe (not dripping wet, but damp to the touch). Let the shoes dry overnight, then condition them with leather conditioner (to add the lost oils back in), and the shoes should be fine. If salt was absorbed when initially exposed, then you may also want to use a little saddle soap, when getting the shoes damp with a sponge, to allow the sulfides to flush out the salts. Be sure to rinse out the saddle soap with a clean damp sponge before allowing to dry.
     
  12. glenjay

    glenjay Senior member

    Messages:
    748
    Joined:
    Feb 13, 2009
    Location:
    Bend, Oregon
    

    You could also go to a candle supply store and pick up a 3oz Tureen jar for about $1. It's not square, but it is similar is size, and the opening is a little larger.
     
  13. Busa

    Busa Senior member

    Messages:
    109
    Joined:
    Mar 25, 2013
    Location:
    Tunisia, North Africa
    I have my first pair of RM Williams yearling leather boots soon to arrive, and also Saphir Renovateur, creme polish, and wax polish. What should I do if I do NOT want them to look "shiny", just a matte finish, black leather boot that is well-protected??
     
  14. SHS

    SHS Senior member

    Messages:
    897
    Joined:
    Apr 30, 2011
  15. david3558

    david3558 Senior member

    Messages:
    885
    Joined:
    Sep 26, 2007
    Location:
    San Francisco
    Question, a lot of us are talking about fine shoe care, now what can I do to overhaul these beat up Red Wings? They have tons of life left but I want to condition and clean them!


    [​IMG]
     
  16. glenjay

    glenjay Senior member

    Messages:
    748
    Joined:
    Feb 13, 2009
    Location:
    Bend, Oregon
    

    If you don't mind, I would like to send you a free jar of my GlenKaren leather Cleaner/Conditioner to try on your boots. I think this would be a perfect test of the product on boots by a member of this forum. You could do a before (as shown above) and an after picture, and give your opinion of the product in this thread.

    If this idea appeals to you then just give me a PM with your address, and I will get a jar out to you right away.
     
    1 person likes this.
  17. hanjin

    hanjin Member

    Messages:
    13
    Joined:
    Jan 18, 2012
    that's a pretty slick offer. excited to see the results if it goes down!
     
  18. david3558

    david3558 Senior member

    Messages:
    885
    Joined:
    Sep 26, 2007
    Location:
    San Francisco
    Excited to see how well the stuff works :) :slayer:
     
  19. easy_golfing

    easy_golfing Senior member

    Messages:
    798
    Joined:
    Jan 30, 2011
  20. chogall

    chogall Senior member

    Messages:
    6,564
    Joined:
    Aug 12, 2011
    Gents,

    Accidentally stained my suede shoes with cream shoe polish. What's the best way to fix or reduce the stain?

    Suede shoes so far really feels higher maintenance...
     
    Last edited: Apr 19, 2013

Share This Page

Styleforum is proudly sponsored by