I'm re-sharing an older post of some experimental turnshoes I made quite a few years ago. These were based on some Scandinavian examples from the archaeological record. They came out pretty good for a first try. My only modification would be to tighten the width through the arch and lengthen the toe area slightly. I … Continue reading Medieval Turnshoes
I was looking up a link for someone and rediscovered the video today showing how to make tough and durable sandals from discarded tires. This style is well-known in Southeast Asia, particularly in poorer areas. If you are interested in sandal-making, you can hardly go wrong with this design if you have access to old … Continue reading Dép lốp or “Ho Chi Min” Sandals
"The first rule of Project Mayhem is that you do not ask questions..." this may be my new teaching mantra I am considering calling my custom footwear "Mayhem Shoes" (at least until Chuck Palahniuk's space monkey lawyers make me stop). I teach a couple classes about low-tech shoemaking a few times per year in the … Continue reading Mayhem Shoes for the Dystopian Survivor
Here's a simple shoe design that was made by our ancestors before there were shoe shops or Zappos. Much of the Europe population, both male and female wore a variation of this for many millenia, right up into the early 20th century. They are commonly associated with their Celtic cousins in Scotland, Wales, and Ireland … Continue reading Ghillies (simple shoes) again
There are still Huaraches north of old Mexico. As I prepare to resole my huaraches I thought it might be good to look back on them as a very viable hand-made shoe. For a long time while searching for huarache construction techniques, I could only find the simplest tire sandals and many links to "barefoot" … Continue reading Huaraches!
I have come across these little benches for quite some time and I find them fascinating. I even started a folder in my image library for them. A quick search around the web finds many of these in auction houses, on Ebay, Craigslist, and elsewhere, generally at exorbitant prices. It appears they generally end their … Continue reading Cobbler’s Workbenches
"The first rule of Project Mayhem is that you do not ask questions..." this may be my new teaching mantra I am considering calling my custom footwear "Mayhem Shoes" (at least until Chuck Palahniuk's space monkey lawyers make me stop). I teach a couple classes about low-tech shoemaking a few times per year in the … Continue reading Project: Mayhem Shoes
These are beauties.
Tuxpan in Southern Jalisco is a small town well known for its Tacos “Tuxpenos” and less known for its unique Mid-Cut Huarache style.
That being nowadays said their is so little demand for the Tuxpan Huarache “Tejido con Talonera Alta” that it can only be made on to order by the only remaining Huarachero in Tuxpan, Armando Ortiz, whose other styles can also be seen in The Huarache Directory HERE
What a beautifully shot movie about 80 year old Huarachero Nicolás Lizares.
For more detailed photographs check out a previous post titled Nicolás Lizares – Maker of Fine Huaraches from Tapalpa, Jalisco
One of the many things taught at Winter Count this year was shoe making in the form of carbatina or ghillies. These are relatively simple shoes notable for their one piece construction and generally involve very little sewing. I am interested in how things are learned and for me, the process is more important than … Continue reading Ghillie Making at Winter Count 2014
It's time for new shoes. After a soon-to-be-finished commission for a leather satchel, I intend to dive into a brogue-making project in the style of 19th century Ireland. This basic design certainly dates back much further than this as shown by archaeological finds in bogs throughout Europe. Don't confuse these brogues with the more modern … Continue reading Irish Brogues and Other Simple Shoes
I like the closed, round toes on this one. From http://huaracheblog.wordpress.com/.
18th century tools of the bootmaker's trade. Click for the source.
Uzbekistan boots. I need to make something like these.
Thanks Dave, for pointing this out to me. Great stuff!
Some shoe solutions from the Bronze Age, North Africa. Sandal maker - New Kingdom, 18th Dynasty from Thebes ca. 1504–1425 B.C. Like a Diderot illustration this gives a good look at the workshop of an artisan with the essentials of his trade. There's the stool, which is useful in leatherwork as it gives a good lap … Continue reading Sandals of the New Kingdom, Egypt
This is a great series of photos of a surviving craft still producing their own leather. This maintains an economy (for them) that could have very little cash outflow, replacing the cost of raw materials with labor. I hope these industries survive.
Nestled into the Sierra Norte mountains of Oaxaca is the small town of Yalalag.
Yalalag is very precious town, not only for it’s strong Pre-Hispanic traditions, but also because like only a handful of other small towns in Mexico, most of the Yalalag population is still dedicated to the traditional craft of Huarache making.
Huaracheria Aquino is the largest ‘Taller’ workshop in Yalalag and they are well known for their high quality Zapotec Huaraches.
What also sets this family run business apart from most other Huarache makers in Mexico is that their crafting process begins at their in-house tannery, where they vegetable tan all their leathers to their precise specifications.
Huaracheria Aquino is famous for their traditional women’s Zapotec Yalalag sandals (the only existing traditional women’s leather sandal/huarache style in Mexico).
Photo of young Zapotec Woman in Mitla, by Guy Stresser-Péan, 1957
Their ‘Tejido’ Huarache also stands out for the…
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Prang's Aids For Object Teaching written by Norman Allison Calkins in 1877. From the Shoemaker's Shop, Colonial Williamsburg.
There are Huaraches north of old Mexico. As a craftsman of sorts, I understand that making a "one-off" of something does not imply expertise and replication builds a real understanding of the object being produced. However, this is certainly not my first leather working or shoemaking project but a major improvement on a theme. The … Continue reading Huaraches!
My new walking shoes. Simple stitch-down design weighing in at about 14 oz (0.4 kg) each. The leather is Hermann Oak 2/3 oz for the uppers and 12 oz (I think) for the mid-sole and out-sole. There is also a double layer stacked heel that has a thin rubber layer on the bottom. They … Continue reading Walking Shoes
My daughter finally dove in and made her first pair of shoes, primarily from the instructions given by Mr Morris of Seamlyne Design. I think it's a fine tutorial for the uninitiated but would like to see a few photos along the way. Anyway, they came out excellently and fit rather well. Just FYI, they … Continue reading New Boots for the Young Lady
The shoemaker's tote is essentially done and I had the chance to get a couple photos over lunch. I will be adding more leather pocketing to hold tools but wanted to wait until I knew where things should be. This is the inside of the side panel. The tools that I know for certain need … Continue reading Tool Tote
Lunch-time post: I began working on a shoemaker's toolbox this weekend. It's based on an eighteenth century design but probably goes back further. It will have leather "pockets" for the awls and some long tools. The difference between this and a carpenter's box is in the upright storage to keep the tools very handy. The … Continue reading Shoemaker’s Toolbox W.I.P.