Needles and awls

As I slowly pack my workshop in Hungary, some treasures just pop up and gets my attention – probably a bit more often, then I would like to admit. Anyway, this are two awl blades. The left one is already smaller than the regular one, what you can easily use for a regular sole stitch – up to 10 spi. This is actually is a bit more than many “handmade” shoes can claim. Not if it does matter – it is not weaker or uglier. It is just the number, which can indicate the maker’s skills, so it more matters to the maker.

The right one although is way more interesting. That is the same shape, pretty much for the same job. The only, big difference is its size. So, what is the big deal about it, right?


Let me show it. The thread beside it is a sole stitching one….noooot. It is a thicker upper sewing thread. We make decoration stitches with it. As you can see its thickness is considerably close to the awl. Of course we use a different thread for sole stitches, although it is a great comparison. Long story short: this is a tiny-tiny awl. A little bit longer story: there are smaller ones.



2 thoughts on “Needles and awls

  1. You’re not packing it up for good are you? I just found your delightful blog and hope that this is not the end of it. I haphazardly got a job at “shoemaker” last spring and got some wheels turning and got the shop officially approved to take apprentices. However we only have the means to be taught how to repair various goods (and we get some weird goods sometimes) and shoes, so I was wondering if have some additional advice other than to do thorough research on my own. I’m located in Norway so attending classes outside of Europe is challenging.

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