These ratty old moccasins have spent a lot of time in the woods. These have been my winter moccasins for over two decades. I can't remember exactly when I made them but it was a quick and dirty sewing job. They have been re-soled at least twice and need it again. The uppers are an … Continue reading Moccasin upgrade time again
Sandals in progress... If you have ever taken a class with me you might know that all the intimidating sewing isn't as bad as it looks. The sole is three layers thick but the use of a good, sharp awl makes the double needle sewing go quickly. A lot more work goes into these than … Continue reading Handmade Sandals
This post came from looking through a few class photos from Rabbitstick several years ago based on an inquiry. This is one of the years I taught my favorite sandal design, an ancient one though still cleverly marketed as a modern style. I call them saint sandals as they look like something you would see … Continue reading Sandals
A while ago I received a request to make a pair of carbatinae (ghillie shoes) for a reenactor. It was the first time I have done this long-distance without being able to measure the foot directly. Luckily, we had good communication and I had a shoe last in his size so with these factors and … Continue reading Ghillie Shoe Commission
About the early shoes...
"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
One of the original boots found in the Oseberg Burial Mound dating back to 834 AD. (Photo: skinnblogg.blogspot.no)
A number of complete Viking Age shoes found in Scandinavia and England have the same characteristics. They are flexible, soft and mostly made of cattle hide, but also other kinds of leather was used.
There are complete shoes found in the Oseberg ship burial mound in Norway, Hedeby trading center in Denmark, and Coppergate (York, Viking Age Jorvik, Editor’s note) in England.
All three of these discoveries show a similar construction and form typical for the Middle Ages.
The shoes found in the Oseberg ship consists of two main parts, soles and uppers, and are so-called “turn shoes”.
Reconstructed boots found in the Oseberg burial mound, by Bjørn Henrik Johansen. (Photo: Bjørn Henrik Johansen/ skinnblogg.blogspot.no)
The shoemaker stitched the shoe together inside out, and then turned right side…
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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!
Some very thick leather shoes. They would last a remarkably long time under the worst conditions.
I have posted about the traditional Mexican Burra Footwear already a couple of times on this blog and consider Burras another fascinating area of footwear research. These Burras I was lucky to photograph also at the Bata Museum in Toronto, their origins are from the 1950’s Uruapan area of Mexico. Although I have never seen a similar Burra design during my research in Mexico.
Visit the Huarache Blog. A tradition I hope remains alive and vibrant.
"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
Check out Uncommon Cate’s stuff here!
Lovely warm and soft, these shoes (or perhaps slippers) began as an accidentally shrunken wool sweater. These poor, shrunken, often high quality wool sweaters end up in thrift and consignment stores on a regular basis. They also tend to cost next to nothing, so all in all they make perfect material candidates for any felt related project. These shoes are a quick and fairly simple project.
I began with two wool sweaters that had been washed in a washing machine until they were fully felted. Both were good and thick which makes for a warmer and more durable material.
The Pattern: The mid-sole is simply a tracing of a foot. The front upper is made by laying a piece of paper over the foot and tracing around the edges. I cut the sole out of the slightly thicker of the two sweaters because the sole gets more wear, and then…
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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
Unlike almost all of mainstream footwear, Huarache leather is still vegetable tanned using wood. Few tanneries in the world still offer vegetable tanned leathers because of the slower tanning process and higher raw material costs.
Not only are the wood and organic matter used to tan the leather renewable, but the vegetable tanning solution doesn’t create toxic carcinogenic bi-products such as Chromium IV to which tannery workers and waterways can be exposed to.
The natural benefits of vegetable tanned leather are that the organic tanning process has a much lesser environmental impact and the leather maintains some of its natural quality to stretch and adapt to your foot shape.
Jesús and Antonio González the father and son tanners still practice this traditional and centuries old tanning method and unlike modern tanneries still tan by hand.
They are considered by many local Huaracheros to be the best vegetable tannery in the Mexican state of…
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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.
An interesting and excellent business idea. Maybe this will help keep the huaracheros’ tradition alive.
For the past 3 years Huarache Blog has been documenting and promoting the craft of Mexican Huarache footwear. This year I will also be developing a specialty e-trade business to offer more immediate support to the craft of Huaraches.
Introducing úkata, an online Huaracheria selling only the best Huaraches in Mexico. Rare designs crafted by the most talented Huaracheros. Timeless Huarache styles that have been made the same way by the artisan and his family for generations. Footwear with a low environmental impact, made with naturally processed and recycled materials.
Click back in February for a more detailed post on úkata and to visit the online store.
Durante los últimos 3 años Blog Huarache ha estado documentando y promoviendo la artesanía de los Huaraches Mexicanos. Este año voy iniciar un negocio de comercio internet para ofrecer un apoyo más inmediato a los Huaracheros y a la artesanía de los Huaraches Mexicanos.
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A real treat from the Sifting the Past blog. It is worth checking out if you are interested in researching the past through images of the period just prior to mass industrialization. The Townsend's have a couple excellent websites including an interesting 18th century cooking blog with videos. There is so much in this painting … Continue reading The Shoemaker