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Found 49 results

  1. House shoes for mom

    This is my first attempt at shoes ever. Its a good thing they are for my mom or else someone would be asking for a redo. They are saddle stitched and the sole is that golden saddle shearling that cowboycolonel was giving away for shipping cost, backed with 7-8 oz veg tan. The upper parts are purple flesh sided and creamy white hair sided. They are ridiculously warm which is what my mom will like even if the shoes turned out a little better than a macaroni necklace. They should be bomb proof though. Her name is Starr so I carved a few stars into the soles for some sort of tread. If you haven't worked with shearling I would recommend you do so. It is tricky to keep things even due to the hair but it works like butter. The project was fun and as with all projects, I learned a bunch. I got the pattern from instructables. Link is below. Had to wing the pattern and a few other things but I got the idea there. http://www.instructables.com/id/Simple-Shearling-Boots/ https://ibb.co/kiykoR https://ibb.co/ecDJ8R https://ibb.co/jNCOa6
  2. This took me several months to get started with so many many delays and a multitude of reasons. I Seriously wanted to learn how to make shoes. The very sad truth is that, there's no school around my region that teaches this, and the only two craftsman i know who makes shoes well, one of them closed his shop and is gone, the other man is about to close his shop and is not willing to teach. So i had to learn everything that is reachable from the web. The problem with this is that, not everyone tells you what you need to know, and me being so ardent jumped straight into buying the only shoe last i could find. the seller had no idea about the lasts and she thought the last was ok for me. What she didn't know is that the last is for a female shoe. But then i happened to have a girlfriend and i was needing to give her a gift. I then thought of making her shoes. This is my output. the entire shoe is handmade - handstitched and without anyone to teach me, i steered a little bit away from the orthodox methods. I dont know if its typical for womens shoes to use the goodyear welt, and since i wanted it made in a way that it wouldn't make her foot look wide. So i did the stitching like that of the Blake welt - done my hand. there's a lot to be desired on this first build. some uneven parts on the shoe and some parts which could have been done better. these will have its own laces when she starts wearing these. She selected the design from the internet and we changed it a bit with the choice of leather. Sadly I couldn't put any more linings on it since the suede is thick. and i had to put a toe stiffener on. If anyone wants to see how i got to this point, please do say so. i have some more pictures
  3. Firs attempt at these, next project are Mukluk's so was essential to get some practice. Made from Bovine,coated in Mink oil. Bison will be use for my next project. Added a second piece for the sole to add to durability. First test walk I found the heal needed to be thicker, gonna put some crepe rubber on their so it lasts, just have to shave the base so glue sticks. It was a learn as you go experience.
  4. Firs attempt at these, next project are Mukluk's so was essential to get some practice. Made from Bovine,coated in Mink oil. Bison will be use for my next project. Added a second piece for the sole to add to durability. First test walk I found the heal needed to be thicker, gonna put some crepe rubber on their so it lasts, just have to shave the base so glue sticks. It was a learn as you go experience.
  5. Firs attempt at these, next project are Mukluk's so was essential to get some practice. Made from Bovine,coated in Mink oil. Bison will be use for my next project. Added a second piece for the sole to add to durability. First test walk I found the heal needed to be thicker, gonna put some crepe rubber on their so it lasts, just have to shave the base so glue sticks. It was a learn as you go experience.
  6. Firs attempt at these, next project are Mukluk's so was essential to get some practice. Made from Bovine,coated in Mink oil. Bison will be use for my next project. Added a second piece for the sole to add to durability. First test walk I found the heal needed to be thicker, gonna put some crepe rubber on their so it lasts, just have to shave the base so glue sticks. It was a learn as you go experience.
  7. I work with Dacca Overseas Limited, one of the largest exporters of footwear in Bangladesh. We produce leather footwear, apparel and accessories working with the best manufacturers in the country. We are able to supply quality leather footwear starting from $20 (depending on the order quantity) and our minimum order quantity is 200 pairs per style. Visit our website for more information : https://www.daccaoverseas.com Email me at : khandker.dayef@daccaoverseas.com if you want to know more. Khandker Dayef Client Relationship Manager Dacca Overseas Limited
  8. Hello guys, my first post here! I am a complete novice to the leatherwork/sewing field and I am looking for some advice here. I would greatly like to get into the reconstruction of Nike's/Jordans especially, completely redoing the upper of the shoe with premium materials such as python, lamb/pig skin and eventually leather. I have been doing a TON of research but when it comes down to finding a machine Google just isnt good enough, i need help from a real person with some experience. (PLEASE VIEW WHAT IM TRYING TO DO HERE: https://instagram.com/JBFcustoms OR www.jbfcustoms) I am looking for a starter machine to do this stuff with. Through constant research I have found that one of the top reconstruction artist linked above uses both a flat bed and a post bed with a roller foot. I personally cannot afford 1 machine really, let alone 2, so I am looking for something that is good enough to get me through my trial and error stage and help me make some profit to purchase a better machine! I have looked up several diff kinds of machines... Post, flat, teflon, cylinder, walking etc etc, but its all like a foreign language to me. I would like my first machine to be able to handle at least 3,4 oz of leather as well as the python and pig/lamb skin material. So far the cheapest post bed Ive found is a Yamata 810 at about $600. I have heard that some machines can come with attachments to make in into a flat, which would be great since that post has that 7" stand, which would make it difficult to sew the material together before actually putting it on the shoe... Can somebody lead me in the right direction?! Im located in Ohio... THANK YOU!!!
  9. My most favourite thing to do when I have the time is make shoes! I have treated myself to some WALNUT Italian leather oxfords, hand stitched down sole and leather lined...yummy!
  10. I've seen youtube videos about shoemaking and unfortunately, the video quality was hard to see because it was VGA, and the creator hardly replies. I had a background of making small leather Items such as wallets, organizers and such - and even a couple bags. I'm happy with my stitching. I never had any experience or Idea about shoemaking - It looks all daunting. If i can, I wanted to create my own shoe, so its Mens shoes and probably a little traditional in the manner of creating using lasts, but the materials would be a little modern. 1.) are Chrome Tanned leathers ok to use?... and what leathers are Not OK for such applications?... the leathers i have are: Chrome tanned Cow hides - on several Finishes, some Nubuck Leather, some pigs hide (0.8mm thick), and some goat hide(0.9mm thick), and some Cow Hide for tooling thats about 2-3 mm thick.. The local shop that sells leathers doesn't always have calf hides so I'm thinking about possible alternatives. 2.) whats a good thickness? -i'm guessing goat hides would probably be a bad Idea for the top part of the shoe... 3.) Do i need the strechy part of the hide? 4.).. can I use the tooling leather for the soles? 5.) I saw someone using a stitching awl for the good year welt - it looked like the tip of the needle was a hook because it was pulling the thread in, but when he started, the thread wasn't really inserted into the needle. - is that right?.. 6.) Can someone post pics of the Bare minimum tools to make shoes? - all handmade - i dont have a sewing machine.
  11. Read the article for further information, and see the photos. I'd like to know more about the type of leather, the stitches used, was it welted, and so on-- Of course, that kind of specialist knowledge isn't covered! http://www.ancient-origins.net/artifacts-other-artifacts/everlasting-shoe-what-does-5500-year-old-shoe-found-cave-tell-us-about-021382
  12. Hello all, Firstly, I would like to say what an invaluable resource this forum is! Now, onto the topic. I have been hand carving soles out of sole bend by hand for the better part of the year. I was using Stanley knife, wetting the leather and then rasping, glassing and soaping the edges to make it look smoother. However, it was never as professional as I wanted to look with faint marks of where the knife had cut still visible. Today, I finally bought a bandsaw to cut through this leather and hopefully have that super vertical finish. I tried a few and it certainly looks better (just some slight marks from where I held the leather a bit too long). I am going to rasp & glass the edges to see if I can get rid of those. So I guess what I'm looking for is any tips or tricks people have to get that really professional looking sole edge, how to use the bandsaw properly (I imagine it takes practice to get a really steady hand) and any other information people have to creating soles! Thanks,
  13. By the end of the week I am expecting to receive the following in the post: A cheap (Chinese made, with probable Japanese influence) beginner's sett of leather working tools from Ebay A remnant/pieces pack of leather, needles, and thread from The Identity Store A copy of "The Leatherworking Handbook" by Valerie Michael from Amazon Yet to acquire from the local chain DIY store (probably nearer the time, or on Sunday if it slips my mind before then which is likely to happen) are: wood and fixings to make a cheap stitching pony Evo-Stik Time Bond contact adhesive an Oilstone (or similar) for inevitable initial sharpening of previously mentioned tools as well as general upkeep later on miscellaneous things that catch my eye which may be helpful such as clamps, sandpaper, straight edge etc Other things yet to be appropriated into my "kit": worksurface stuff (cutting mat, poly board, granite (or similar)) decent desk lamp as most of my work will be completed in the late evening/small hours after finishing the late shift at "the day job" and goodness knows my eyes will need all the help they can get edge slicking substance graph/grid paper for when I feel up to making my own patterns bone folder type tool stitching awl Things I already have, yet to be consolidated together: poly mallet basic geometry set (ruler, square, compases etc) pencils large toolbox for storage stack of "craft" drawers for storage non-marring spudger set which I'm sure will come in handy for poking/prodding in crevices metal bodied Utility knife (and blades) Extra Virgin Olive Oil in lieu of more specialist finishes tonnes of old clothes for rags Things I will probably get at a later date once I get a feel for everything (this does not include ad hoc replacement/upgrading of any of the above when needed): butcher's block style work station (as I'll mostly be working at my 10yr old pine desk in my bedroom initially, maybe out in the shed weather permitting) relevant dyes, treatments, etc and relevant applicators basic carving tools (I do not plan on getting into this much but I guess it's always handy to be able pop a pretty border on something special) ___ I know the cost of starting a new hobby from scratch is always going to be a major consideration, but it seems leathercraft is even more so. Yes I know it's no good moaning to other people who have all been there/done that, but starting out on a shoe string is still likely to cost me upwards of £100 ($125 for you colonials ). Being the sort of person I am, often doing things on a whim, and generally cautious with cash, I do not want to go to the lengths that some do and get The Works in terms of equipment and materials to start with. I don't want to spend a small fortune on something if I don't end up getting decently into it to justify the cost. That said, it seems the general advice in terms of initial outlay is "get the best you can afford" and that's what I'm doing I suppose. I guess there are those out there who have started out with much less, and I have no need nor reason trying to justify what I'm doing. I guess in a way I'm secretly hoping that I get sufficiently good enough at the whole "leather thing" that in the long run I can start going to fairs, events, do made-to-order and the like, and be able to become (at least partially) self employed. But that's definitely a long way off. I think for me leathercraft will always be a matter of being on a shoestring, at least in the sense of trying to get the best from the least. I've always been enthralled by the way craftsmen of all disciplines in years gone-by have come up with ingenious solutions which even centuries or millennia haven't changed much, and as much as possible I want to keep what I do "low-tech": drawing up templates by hand rather than using PC software, using as traditional methods and tools as possible, and if possible trying to be authentic in style/process with any historical based pieces I produce. I (like to think) I am fairly good at improvising, and this will also keep costs down. Who needs a £40 edge slicker when a double-pronged piece of deer antler (free if you know where/when to look) will do? Or expensive black dyes if you can master the likes of vinegaroon and lampblack?
  14. Brass vs Steel? What do you use, why? What is the best?
  15. As someone with a barefoot lifestyle I still have to concern myself with shoes for work and the Minnesota cold. And having done leatherwork for almost 40 years, I decided to venture into shoe making. My requirements: NO heels, NO arch support, VERY wide, NO tight closure and not overly warm. On the one photo you can see the two prototypes I made from cheap suede - the method/pattern came from the web and was totally dumb - discarded methods. A third one made more sense and so I traced my footprint and then used felt from a craft store to mold over the top of my feet to develop the pattern for the uppers. On that photo you can see my first working brown pair. Some idiot called them slippers, so I decided on my next pair to add fake lace closures. Which resulted in the yellow pair that I still wear.
  16. Hi guys, so I used dubbin on my leather shoe thinking it will add waterproofing and I will still retain the shininess, Only to find that it actually made the shoe not take the cream polish now the shoe is dull and and not shiny. Is there anyway I could remove the dubbin?
  17. Shoe parts Cutting Dies

    Shoe parts Cutting Dies Hi all, Can anyone advise on where I can purchase some cutting dies for baby shoes? Thank you
  18. DIY Line Finisher

    I'm looking into making (or buying, on the off chance that flying pigs are sighted) a line finisher. It's mainly for shoe/boot making. What are the essential features? Looks like a muslin and horsehair wheel would be really useful. Also, a burnishing wheel. A few sanding wheels. What about trimming/cutting wheels? I usually see cordwainers cutting soles by hand. And the tool used for marking stitches on a welt? Is that essential or just nice-to-have? Also, I see some cone-shaped wheels that look like vitrified grinding wheels. What are those for? A shelf seems important. And what other features would you want? What about belt sander wheels vs drums? Seems like the drums would be a lot simpler and the belts would be higher performance. I suspect there will be lots of "just buy one" and "you can pick one up at an auction for cheap" and "DIY is a false economy" thoughts. I don't mean to start a debate about DIY or acutioning or whatever. I'm just trying to understand the basic requirements for a line finisher.
  19. Hello, I am a new member here. I am a new shoemaker based in France and I need to buy a sewing machine to sew the shoes upper. I have experience with post bed one needle sewing machine. I learned to used it in Shoemaking school and when I was in Indonesia. Now I need a sewing machine to work here in France. I don't have a huge budget and I have been looking around for used post bed sewing machine but they are all too expensive for me. I am thinking to buy something cheap first like vintage SINGER sewing machine 99k and when I got money I buy the post bed machine. But I'm afraid it won't work well. I am thinking to get me vintage SINGER 29K but then it doesnt have roller foot, and I don't have experience in stitching upper with walking foot. Now I found a flat bed sewing machine from SIECK that seems good, the price is still a bit high but I can cope with it, it is PFAFF Kl. 143-4 single needle flat bed sewing machine with motor 220v and roller foot. This PFAFF machine cost me 612,5 euros already included VAT and shipping. But it is still a flatbed, I have experience stitching upper on a flatbed is not really that easy but I can cope with it. I still need your advice about this. The question is, should I buy vintage machine like SINGER 29k, or sewing machine like SINGER 99k (I saw this can sew leather too), or this PFAFF 143-4 sewing machine? My work is mostly women shoes. Here I attached one of my work for example. I am using soft not thick leather. Thank you so much for your time. Earlene A. Agripina www.earlenechen.wix.com/myleatherworld
  20. We are selling out our complete shoe repair and custom bootmaking shop in Poplar Bluff, Mo. We have two post machines that are like new, bought from Nick o Sew a couple years ago, one single needle, one double needle. There is also a Boss Tippman that is still just like new bought only a year ago. The rest of the shop equipment is older but in good working condition. There are 250 pairs of cowboy boot lasts and shoe lasts on which 7 toe styles can be made...some barely used. Full size runs with widths from AA to EEE or wider are represented in most styles. There are lots of supplies including thread, soling leather, rubber soling, heel bases and lifts, upper leathers and even some exotics. Would like to sell as a complete package. Buyer must come to the shop and arrange moving. Call 573-686-4545. No calls after 9pm central time please. I will not respond to texts. I can email detailed photos upon request. Asking price for complete shop package is $15,000. Let`s talk.
  21. Hello! I am a beginner shoemaker and have been trying to figure out an affordable and dependable way to sand and shape leather soles and heels. I purchased a harbor freight belt sander that broke down very quickly. Then I purchased a black and decker grinder that was modified by a shoemaker that exploded and almost took my eye out! Anyways, I would love to hear what people are using to shape leather that isn't a huge investment like the industrial ones but one I can use at home and feels safe. Can anyone recommend perhaps a better brand for a belt sander? Regards, Maia
  22. And it only took 20, maybe 25 attempts. But now? Hah, I can make pair whenever I feel like it. Free at last... If enough people beg me, I'll make a tutorial. Edit: Kudos Johanna, the new site looks terrific!
  23. Hello everyone, I intend to make shoes for my wife. I see http://cordwainertools.com/ has a women pumps shoes making video. This is the link "http://cordwainertools.com/index.php?route=product/product&product_id=222". Do you have digital version and can you share to me? Thanks so much, Hoang
  24. I'm pretty new to sewing. I have a consew 206RB in very good shape. The main purpose for me getting into the field is for shoe making. Before anybody goes there, I am aware that a post roller foot is the best machine for such work, but I didn't have post bed money. I bought a good machine that I could afford. I also plan to venture to other things which will require a flat bed. Anyways, the foot marks my leather. I have already read the manual and loosened the screw at the very top to relieve some pressure, which did help. But I was told that there is a screw to loosen for the outer foot and inner foot, and since I'm a rookie I really don't know which one I loosened. It's the inner or "walking foot" that leaves marks, they can easily be rubbed out of suede, but not leather. Anybody have some suggestions?? Even on tools that can rub marks out? Also, if you're interested in this machine shoot me a pm. If I can't figure out how to get this to stop marking my leather I MAY be looking to sell it to buy a machine that can. Located in Ohio. Thanks!!
  25. This is a repost from the Flip Flops Tutorial This is very long comment that was tacked on to the Flip Flops Tutorial that ventured off into Sandal Making and Shoemaking. While this isn’t a tutorial in its own right, there’s enough useful information here that it merits a stand alone topic with it’s own search tags for those looking for tips on making men’s sandals and men’s casual shoes. There’s so little info on this topic that every little bit helps and here’s some sourcing tips and a few how-to’s from someone just six months ahead of you on the learning curve If you don’t mind the trial and error method and can figure stuff out on your own, you can teach yourself as I am. It is completely doable for the intermediate level leatherworker. There’s no new techniques to master nor specialty tools to purchase. If you haven’t seen or tried your hand at making a pair of flip flops, start there first. Make at least a couple two three pairs for jumping into this. What Tutorial? I was asked whether I had made any progress on a tutorial I had promised some months back but never materialized and that’s what prompted this lengthy post. -------------------- You mean the Sandals Tutorial I promised last August? Where I said: “I’m working on a tutorial for these and one other model of Men’s Sandals, plus a minimalist, or “barefoot sandal”, as a companion to the Flip Flops Tutorial. Should have a download posted in a few days in the tutorial section.” That post? Where I promised a tutorial but was really just showing off this pair of sandals I had made? No Sir, I have not made any progress whatsoever. What happened was I went through the pics I had taken and realized they weren’t going to work. Oddly, the thing that the tutorial is about is not the thing you make for the tutorial. You have to decide on the front end what is you’re doing. Making sandals or making a tutorial? If it’s a tutorial, then you make a series of process steps and you think in terms of process steps. That meant I had to start all over, which is no problem if you are really motivated to make a tutorial. I was more motivated to move on to shoemaking. I still might make that tutorial and even one on Shoemaking. Who knows? I'm a novice at all of this and I’m just self-teaching my way through by trial and error. But listen, if you can make flip flops, you can make sandals. And if you can make sandals, you can make shoes. Tell ya what, here’s a Cliff’s Notes version of the Tutorial I was going to make. Sandal Making Sandals are not much different than flip flops; heck, flip flops are sandals. The key bit in either case is securing the upper to the lower using "sew tabs" that are folded under the insole and are stitched down. I came up with a variety of approaches on how to do this. - Eliminate the fold tabs altogether and stitch the "stub" straight down to the insole. It’s a really cool look with the stitches exposed but requires that your stitches are all lined up perfectly. - You can fold inwards, you can fold outwards. - You can expose the fold on top of the insole, again either inwards or outwards (the latter being a lot easier of course). - The Elevator Approach — Raise the insole into the upper and keep it suspended while you stitch down to the midsole, Then lower the insole and glue down. Provides for a really sleek look not having stitches exposed but with all the strength benefit that stitching provides. - Side Stitched. Here you notch the insole on the side, just enough for the tab to fit flush to the insole and at the same angle where it meets the insole. You use a running stitch at the same angle (for looks) to secure. The stitches are exposed on the side, so again you have to get the stitches symmetrical for a nice look. As of the uppers, there are further options using buckled straps which are particularly useful as backstraps to really secure the sandal to your foot and an absolute must if you intend on running with them as in the case of the “barefoot sandal” that is so popular now. Shoe Making There’s not much difference between sandal making and shoemaking to tell you the truth. I’m referring to Men’s casual shoes, not that mind-blowing bespoke stuff. I’m not saying it’s easy, however. Shoes are a lot harder than sandals — not the technical parts. Stitching is stitching. Rather, it’s the patterns and fit that will drive you crazy. Don’t even bother with shoemaking unless you have a pair of lasts. You should have those even for sandal making actually. You can get a pair of used lasts for $50 on eBay any day of the week. Wait and hunt for a deal and you can get a pair for $20 or less. While waiting for your eBay deal to come along, try your hand at making some lasts yourself. Just a side note on lasts, they are not replicas of your feet as commonly thought of. Instead, they are the cavity of a shoe, the empty space inside a shoe. Might seem like hair splitting but it is an important difference. Your foot fits inside that cavity. Foam Lasts Anyways, here’s a cheap and easy way to make some lasts using expanding foam. You’ll need to sacrifice a pair of shoes however. Lace up the shoes as you normally would and place a plastic bag inside the shoe. <Just occurred to me that you should put some talc powder in that bag and give it a shake. I forget whether I did that or not, but I must have otherwise it would be difficult to separate the plastic> Dispense the expanding foam making sure you fill in the entire cavity. You’ll end up using too much and it will bulge at the shoe and expand out of the top enough to make half a lower leg. Not a problem. Just let it cure and cutaway the shoe. Remove the plastic and sand off any excess bits. Then cover the foam last in masking rape or duct tape. Any tape. You know what would look cool? That white cloth medical tape — get that “invisible man” look. In any case, be sure to apply tape to prevent crumbling from handling, If you want to get artsy with it, decoupage the masking tape. Why not? I did. I also sprayed it with some varnish. And then a curious thing happened, the foam shrunk. I guess with that much foam it takes a while for the center to cure and when it did everything shrunk. But it wasn’t anything that a couple pairs of thick socks couldn’t take care of. Wood Lasts Right after congratulating yourself on how smart and practical you are you will discover the shortcomings of a foam last. “It sure would be nice if I could secure the upper by tacking or nailing it to the last while taken measurements and for fittings.” Indeed it would, Go back and hunt for a deal on eBay. I just wanted a “reasonable” deal and refused to pay usury prices for something that’s just a hunk of wood. (Turns out that last making is a specialized art from that takes years to master.) Mastery or not, it’s still true that it’s just a hunk of wood. If you’re comfortable with woodworking, you can make a rudimentary pair for the cost of 2x6 and 2x4 scrap wood. Just stack and glue graduated pieces from toes to ankle height and draw the outline of your foot on the side. Then spend a couple hours at the belt sander and you’ll get a pair you can work with, Use your feet as a shape guide and a pair of existing shoes as your guide for fit. For me the biggest benefit in making homemade lasts is that I now more fully understand and appreciate the lasts I purchased on eBay. I will say though that I still use my homemade wood lasts at times. Shoe Patterns The other thing that is difficult for me is converting a 3D concept into a 2D pattern. The 2D version of the front half of a shoe (the vamp) doesn’t look like a shoe at all, not to me anyways. Forget about finding patterns for men’s shoes. There aren’t any. However, there are plenty of YouTube videos showing you the “tape method” for pattern making. You might find those useful, they weren’t much help for me. What did work was to take shoes apart. Instant pattern. The hard part is finding the style you like at a cheap price. I’m interested in retro patterns from the 70’s like these two shoes: Those guys cost upwards of $150 new and $50+ used on ebay because retro is the thing these days. But I know a guy who knows a guy who knows about this place: ShopGoodwill.com (sorry for the small pic – just click on it) This is Goodwill’s auction site that’s looks and feels like it was built using a TRS 80 hobbyist PC before the internet existed, but once you get used to navigating you will be surprised with how deep their inventory is and how their prices are. I’ve bought several pairs and was the only bidder. As show in that screenshot, that particular day there were 360 listings for “Leather” in the Men’s Shoes category starting at $3. Reverse Engineering Taking shoes apart is highly recommended, not just to yield a pattern but also to figure out how they were constructed. Once you get that level of understanding, it’s no big deal to experiment with your own ideas and patterns because you’re starting from a working model instead of from scratch. The Stitch Down Shoe The stitch down shoe is pretty straightforward and easily doable for the intermediate level leatherworker. No special tools required and no new techniques to learn. Look at how the upper is attached in this pic. That’s about as straightforward as it gets. The Chukka Boot I’m partial to the Chukka style which can be found in a variety of shoe style as well as boots. That’s the next level after shoes. Traditional Turkish Shoe I also want to figure out how to make these guys. These are traditional Turkish Shoes that have been around for a loooooong time and still being made today. I want to say they date back centuries, but I don't know that for sure. Many many years for sure. They look super cool and comfortable, don't they? Some hot shot kid is marketing these in the U.S. for $200 pop and I would be surprised if his cost was more than $20. Google "Sabah Shoe" for more info. Soling Material – Conveyor Belting About the only thing unique about shoemaking is soling material. Soles take a beating and can wear out quickly. The best leather option is “shoe sole bend” — super thick, super strong, compressed leather that you’ll need a bandsaw to cut. It’s expensive and not readily sourced. From there your looking at rubber or synthetic materials and those are expensive too….unless you know somebody who spent months finding this triple top secret soling tip. During my research, I ran into a handful of recommendations to use conveyor belt material. In fact there’s a couple such posts on this forum that mention it. Apparently this was a popular choice years ago, particularly with moccasin makers who could source used conveyor belts for practically nothing. Then came eBay where anything is worth something to someone and sure enough that drove prices way up. Look, this is just plain o’ rubber. You can buy rubber floor mats for next to nothing. Surely somebody offers industrial rolls of rubber cheaply? No no no. Apparently not. But here’s the thing. There is one price for a “roll of rubber sheeting” and then there’s another price for “Skirtboard 60 +/-5 Durometer.” Sometimes what you know is better than who you know. I found a deal for a 50’ roll that is 5” wide and 1/4” thick for .79 cents a foot – free shipping! That’s $40 delivered. That will yield up to 25 pairs of soles. Now that’s what I’m talking about! Compare that to the other alternatives at $10/pair and more….a lot more in some cases. (Click on screenshot picture to expand) I haven’t worked with it much yet. Feels like it will last forever. Very flexible yet firm. I like the feel of it, even the smell of it. Has a perfumey sort of smell. Easy to work with, cuts like a dream. I cut out a pair of soles and glued it to one of my failed shoe attempts (I have a bunch) and it looked great…..and then it started separating after a couple days of use. Stitching it down will obviously work, but that will require a channel and punching or drilling holes. I haven’t tried it yet, but I don’t think a stitching iron will work as the holes will fill right back up. But maybe not. Like I said, haven’t yet put it through the tests. I don’t know if this is some special deal or not but everywhere else it’s lot more expensive. Just saying, for $40 you can’t go wrong. Get a roll of this for whatever shoe style you’re working on, flips flops, sandals, or shoes. I just can’t help but think that this deal is probably not going to last long. Heck, that roll is so heavy you would spend $30 just to ship it. And there you have it. EDIT: I still haven't made a "perfect" pair, but this is my best effort so far. Notice that it's just one shoe. I have lot of those. No point making the other one if you're going to do it all over. EDIT 2: Check out this Dude. I call it "The Liberace". Again, just one shoe -- it was extremely uncomfortable. This design just came out of nowhere, sorta. I was taking apart a failed attempt on a chukka style and it was taking forever, so I took the scissors to it and cut off the upper, just leaving a stub attached to the insole. It caught my attention right away and I stared at it while my brain whizzed through it's "match that image" thing that it does. And then it occurred to me. Heck. that's a loafer without a top. I tossed the failed attempt to the side and went straight to work on this prototype. I think it's cool. I had a Miami Vice vibe in mind. To bad it kills your feet. I'll come back to this style later on. Lots of variations you can do with this style.