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Topic: My Latest Footwear  (Read 3573 times)
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« on: December 02, 2011 04:22:00 PM »

I just finished these a couple of days ago for my wife and after a little adjusting she's very happy with them.  I wanted to do something outside what I had learned in school and requiring a lot more challenge.  These delivered that in buckets.  If not for the books I got from one of my suppliers I would have been totally lost.  I now know how different bootmaking is from shoemaking.  The same basics, but only the basics.  I can see why so many in the trade tend to specialize in either boots or shoes and try not to cross over.  But now that I know what it's like I'm hooked on both.  Some of the stitching on this pair is off as my machines both had problems and needed new parts and a lot of adjustments to get them back to proper running condition, and now I have to get used to operating them running as they should.  It's astounding how far out of time a machine can be and still do a reasonable stitch until a part fails and you start fixing things.  Then it all has to be set right and you have to learn how to operate it all over again.  The difference in performance is unreal!

Anyway, here are the pics, starting with several of the assembly shots so you can get an idea of what is involved. 

This is the upper, lined and ready for trimming.

This is what the vamp looks like just before the lining is attached.....

This is the closed boot from the side.  Notice that the lining of the vamp is only glued a little past the stitches.

This is the closed boot from the front.

And from the bottom.

Here is a shot of the uppers soaking in warm water before being stretched over the lasts.

This pic shows the boot after the upper has been hand stitched to the inner sole, the welt stitched around the edge,
the center filled with cork and the rand piece tacked on the heel area.  It is still on the last.

This shows the sole applied just after shaping and just before hand stitching to the welt.

And these last views are of the finished boots after all the stitching, stacking the leather heels, adding the rubber top lifts
and the black inking of the edges and sole.  The last step is 2 coats of leather balm allowed to dry slightly before buffing. 
for a high gloss a premium soft shoe polish can be used after the leather balm.

Unfortunately the pictures don't do justice to the boots.  They are a deep blood red and black lizard skin print leather.  The black trim
is a perfect complement although it doesn't show well in the pictures.  My lights are on the fritz and the flash washes everything out.
Still you can more or less get the idea.  Even though these are not perfect, I'm happy with the result.  A little more practice with the
revamped machines and there will be no stopping me. 

Now if I can just find that box of jewelry pics and get them rescanned........

« Reply #1 on: December 02, 2011 05:01:14 PM »

Those are quite stunning! I loved the process pictures. Thank you for sharing  Smiley
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« Reply #2 on: December 02, 2011 05:06:22 PM »

Those are incredible, I love the color!
I always wondered how a shoesmith (? not sure if that's the right term) creates a pair of shoes.
You sir, have mad skills!

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« Reply #3 on: December 02, 2011 08:06:37 PM »

Amazing cobbling skills,
when you take photos take them from further away then crop the photos either with you camera or your computer, if you take a piece of white plastic bag and tape it over you flash it will help reduce the glare as well. I also compress my photos for web posting in the editing section of Microsoft office picture editor (dont know if you have office) it makes them load up to the web super fast.
Cobble on!

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« Reply #4 on: December 02, 2011 08:25:56 PM »

wow! those boots look awesome! to me they kind of have a steampunk look to them...oh! im having boot envy lol

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« Reply #5 on: December 02, 2011 09:40:17 PM »

Wow!  This rocks.  Thanks for sharing.

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« Reply #6 on: December 02, 2011 11:03:40 PM »

Lucky wife. Those are lovely boots and thank you for all the progress pictures. They give a good idea of the work involved.
« Reply #7 on: December 03, 2011 03:39:33 AM »

You are awesome. I am in awe. O.o

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« Reply #8 on: December 03, 2011 08:28:14 AM »

Oh my goodness these are amazing! What a lucky wife you have! Shocked

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« Reply #9 on: January 23, 2012 11:27:53 AM »


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