Thank you to everyone who has looked at/followed/commented on my blog this past year, your support is much appreciated and made me keep writing. Unfortunately I probably won’t be publishing any more entries any time soon, but you never know, maybe I’ll be back in the future..
I’d also like to thank Heidi for her constant patience and support. It was incredibly generous for you to make time every Wednesday to see me, and to stand by me through my struggles. But most of all, I am so grateful for the invaluable knowledge that you shared; you are extraordinary at what you do!
In conclusion, I feel that I can now say I understand how a pair of shoes is made, something that I had no idea about at the beginning of the year. It’s funny to look back at my very first post (‘Shoe gazing; are they more than we realised?’) and see just how oblivious I was to the art. I am going to miss shoemaking immensely, and although I definitely had my struggles with it, they were what made the final products worthy. As something that we so often take for granted, I see now that perhaps some people have never had the opportunity to appreciate their shoes. By going right to the source, I feel that I am somewhat more conscious, and therefore appreciative.
After any excess glue was removed with crepe, finally they were complete! (mind the dodgy photo!). The boots turned out to probably be my favourite (a long side the wedges) of the shoes I made, and it is a nice feeling to have completed them.. If only it was winter coming though..
It was noted that the fake buckle was moving around a lot, so hand stitching was done to reduce this. The heel of the boot can also be seem in this photo..
Next, socks for inside the boots were made using an adjusted insole pattern. The leather chosen was the same as the upper. In turn, these were glued and pressed inside the boots.
Using a special weighted nailing tool, nails were also pressed in into the insole, as shown in the photo. This was somewhat hard to do without the nails bending..
Next, I applied two coats of glue to the heels and underside of the shoe and stuck them together as accurately as possible. After being put in the sole press, a number of nails using a nail gun were nailed into the heel, as shown in the photo. Essentially, this strengthens the the heel and makes sure it stays attached.
Next I dyed the heels with two coats of brown dye and left them to dry before also applying sealant to keep the colour in tact. After the dye and sealant were totally dry, the sides of the heel were buffed on the machine for shininess. Their tops were also slightly ruffed up so that glue would stick to them.