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Shoes and Craft

A shoemaker's blog about shoemaking

Monthly Archives: January 2011

What should I say first about it? Should a talk about the REALY sharp knife what is needed a lot? If you don’t pay enough attention sharpening it, it will make your life miserable.. Or should I start talking about the right technique, which is also important? Well.. Skiving is one of the first thing what you have to learn, when you start to make shoes. Normally it is a whole week project, but in the intensive courses, we can’t spend more than a day or a few hours with it.

Anyway… there are one one good advice I can give: get a good (preferably curved) knife and practice. You will find your own way to achieve good result. Good skiving is the basic to create good shaped shoes and you just can’t miss it.

I would suggest this order when you start this procedure.


Stuff I used:


Toe puffs and heel counters

Curved knife

Almost all of my students complained about burner lamps – so I went after this stuff and I could manage to get plenty. Soon it will be available at Here is the beauty. Works with denatured alcohol which is available at any hardware store. If you work with leather sole – it is a must to get.

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Don’t worry, you don’T have to make this pic, only something on the last, but still interesting, hmm?

Tonight (morning for some of you)

– skiving tutorial (most probably the most important lesson for beginner shoemakers by far)

a bit later: woman boot making

Let’s call it bonus material and generously don’t realize that it is part of the project, OK? Finishing the German Welt, needs a special sole edge and also a decoration wheel, what English shoemakers call fudge wheel (because it considered to show fake stitch marks). So, let’s start from here…

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