How Shoes Are Made

How Shoes Are Made

How Shoes Are Made


Shoes are essential in human's life. It is something that people have worn for many decades, and it has continued to be of much greatness to those who wear them. Shoes give not only your feet protection but also the comfort you deserve as a normal human being. Shoes have remained to be something that is incomparable due to their different designs and how it is widely spread. It is known not only by the adults but the children, and these shoes the impact it has on human beings.


It is also evident that for you to be able to wear your shoes without any challenges it has to be made correctly, and you should also be sure that the boots fit you well that you will not feel insecure in them. Shoes are made in different styles, and therefore, it will be up to you to pick one that fits you well. There are so many companies that are involved in the production of shoes, and they have proven it to many people that they can reach up to the demand of their customers in ensuring that they produce something that they will not regret having ordered.


It is with the high exception that the shoemakers have ventured into the world of shoemaking to maintain the whole process of shoe production. Shoes are not something that hit the market in the present day, but it is something that was invented long ago, and since it was of low quality, the shoemaker saw the need to change the whole thing into a new design. However, the shoes that were made by the earliest shoemaker only concentrated on the function and not the comfort of the wearer, and this is why they had to create something new that will not only have the function but also be able to give comfort to the person wearing them.

The History of Shoes


In the ancient period, the most commonly used footwear were sandals; however, it was known that some of the early cultures had a more substantial shoe, which marked the differences in the community. It is also evident that the ancient shoemakers had more design, but to some point, their designs were very different from the modern ones. By 1850, shoemakers had already learned to make a straight shoe, and that gave them a spotlight that caused them to increase their speed in the creation of shoes. This is to say that the left and the right shoe were similar (not different from each other).


Shoes in the 17th century


In this period, shoes that were made for men were squired on the toes, and it was very popular among the people. The revival in ancient Greek culture made footwear such as slippers, backless shoes, and chopines with a high platform sole to be trendy in Europe. However, the men and women from Italy had to wear mules which by then had a variety of colours and materials that it was very easy for someone to pick what suited them. Additionally, it was evident that the fashion and designs of shoes from France change immediately when Charles II ascended to the throne of France. Also, the type of shoes greatly grew in popularity worldwide, and all the designs of shoes that were created for Charles II remained and were used in the next century. The famous style that was made for him was known as the red heels.


In the 18th century


During this period the women footwear took another shape from the salon mule to the new one, boudoir fashion which changed to be dancewear as the days went by. The person behind this change was Madame de Pompadour, who was considered to be the mistress of Louis XV of France. He was also considered to have taken part for the trending of the shoes. It is also evident that footwear of this era was created from materials such as silk.


However, in the 1780s, there was a change of things; this leads to the introduction of slippers which was widely used and appreciated. It is also in this period that the shoemakers decided to decrease the height of the heels and made it short, which concentrated more on the comfort of the wearer. The comfort in them caused them to even walk for long distances, something that was very difficult with the high heels.


The 19th Century Style


This was the time the duke of wellington commissioned the shoemakers to create boots that would be a synonym to his name. Willies were made in the 1850s by the British Rubber Company. It was made from rubber, and it is still popular to date. It is also in this era that the family of shoemaking firm was first founded by C & J Clark Ltd and it is still to date England's leading shoemakers.


Moreover, during the 1830s, someone was not able to differentiate between the left and the right shoes, and this when the French shoemakers decided to apply different labels on the shoes to differentiate them easily. Therefore, they labelled gauche on the left shoe, and to the right shoes, they marked it droit. However, they retained the shape of the boots, and this made many countries globally to emulate their trend into making something that was better for them.


During 1837, J. Sparkes Hall invented an elastic side boot; this was very advanced because it was much easy to put them on and take off unlike those that required be buttoning or lacing up. His style remained to be popular in the fashion of shoes after he took a pair off his footwear to Queen Victoria. However, in 1860, the flat squired toed shoes with laces on their sides were abolished, and a new design was brought to light. This one had nothing in front of it, which made it easier for the shoemakers to decorate them. In the 1870s, the formation of shoes changed as the new fashion style having a hoof-shaped that provided balance to the wearer.


The Early 20th Century Style


It is in this period that the low heeled shoes started to lose its demand because of the introduction of the high heeled type. Moreover, the most innovative shoe designer Salvatore Ferragamo rose to fame due to his spectaculars shoe designs that were made from fish, crocodile, and kangaroo skin. His sandals were one of the most vital shoe designs that he ever made, and they were trendy in the century. Also, shoemakers wanted to make shoes that were truly comfortable and fashionable. They also wanted to make sure that the shoes that are made are of different shapes and sizes; this was because the shape and sizes of feet were not similar.


The Steps to Be Followed When Making Shoes


The process of making shoes will always differ depending on the design, shape, size, and the material you would want to be used. Therefore, this article will discuss the steps and ways that are to be followed in the production of shoes. It is also vital to follow these steps to make sure that you make shoes that are of high quality. Freaky Shoes is proud to present the following steps to show you how shoes are made.


Step One: Designing the Shoes


The essential thing in the production of the shoe is your design. Without this, then you will probably make something that it is not worthy at all. The shoemakers depend on the design to figure out what they are supposed to come up with as their final result in the shoemaking process. In every shoemaking company, some designers or artists are meant to decide on what they would want the end product to be like, and this is done by sketching to have the full picture of the shoes they want to have. Since it is very challenging for someone to come up with something great that they did not plan for.


Moreover, the team of designers does sketch images using a computer to showcase what type of shoes they want to make and how it will look when the whole process is done. They try several times until they make sure that they come up with something worth being created and presented as shoes. Additionally, it is impossible to have your footwear made without anything to show how it is likely to be and of what material you would want them to have.


In most cases, before you start to design your shoes, you should make sure that you have the appropriate material that will be used in the production of your footwear. You also need to consider the colours to be used when you want to paint your shoes and most importantly if you can easily afford them. You would want your shoes to be unique among others, and this is what will give the impression of looking for something better for your boots or shoes.


As a shoe designer, you are supposed to look for inspiration for something you are working on. In this case, you should look for something that will ignite you and make you find something applicable in your shoes. However, when you want to find actual inspiration, you might find it on the cardboard, but big companies would not want to spend a lot of time on this, that is why they use computers for their sketch works. Moreover, what you are putting on this cardboard does not need to make sense; the important thing is that you can interpret your work and make sure.


Sketching is essential when it comes to shoe production because, without it, you cannot make something pleasant. Your sketch can easily explain the idea you want to use in making your footwear, and this can be done in a short time. However, your sketches will only be great when they are effortless. Moreover, for you to come up with something tangible, you need to keep on practising on it because there is no other way you can go through smoothly without sketching. Also, it will be inappropriate for you to pay people to do this for you when you can do it and spare your capital.


Step Two: Making a Last


This is a form that is widely used by shoemakers to mould the footwear; therefore, it can be described as a copy of your feet. Also, they come in different materials, shape, and different shapes. It is something that is only used in the production of shoes. It is also evident that last is the first tool that is used to create shoes; therefore, it will probably be used during the entire process of making your footwear.


Additionally, in the whole process of making shoes, last is one of the tools that are vital to have them for you to accomplish your work. However, before you start making your shoes, you should make sure that you choose the right last that will help you create a variety of shoes. You will also need to know what the last is made of and how you are supposed to apply it in making shoes. This will be very important because you will likely create the best footwear. The following are the thing you need to consider when purchasing your last;


Materials That Are Used To Make Shoe Last


Lasts can be moulded from different materials such as Aluminium, Plastic and Wood. Aluminium is the least material that is used to make last for shoe moulding. For it to be formed well, it is placed in an oven with high temperatures. On the other hands, plastics tend to be the most used last in the shoemaking process. However, it is not considered as the best because it is prone to pollution problems, and this is something that is much opposed by environmental agents. Besides, it is still used in shoe mass production.


Lastly, a wooden shoe last is afoot copy that is moulded upon which footwear are constructed. The wood last is greatly used in the production of footwear and the bespoke making of shoes. The shoemaker takes your feet measurement and then makes a wooden last that fits your feet. This will help the shoemaker to create shoes that provide you well efficiently. A long decade ago, wooden lasts were made by the use of the last maker's knife and were made from a tough type of wood to prevent it from breaking.


Similarly, when you want to make the right shoe, you should consider using a wood last; however, it is pretty expensive. But you will not have to bargain if at all you want to have perfect shoes. If you're going to have the best wooden last for your shoemaking process, then you should consider visiting Freaky Shoes and order one at a fair price. They probably have the best product that you will need in ensuring that you create good shoes.


Types of Lasts That You Can Work With In Shoemaking


Pump last


This type of last is mostly used in the production of women footwear. Also, you can choose to use any kind depending on what you would want your shoes to look like. For example, you can use Slingback pump, Mary Jane pumps, D'orsay pumps, T-strap pumps and classic pumps. In pump last, the toe can be designed in different shapes such as pointed toe, rounded shape and square shape.


Moccasin last


Moccasins are a type of shoes, and they can only be made well when moccasin lasts are used. When you use them, you will probably get an original moccasin.


Shoe lasts for shoes with laces.


This type is mostly used in creating derby shoes or oxford shoes. Also, it has a curved shape to the insteps. This property makes it better for those whose feet have curved instep, thus fitting them well.


Boot lasts for boots with zipper.


This is mostly used in making boots, and it can do well in any boot design or style it only depends on which type you would like to have either ankle or high boots with laces or zipper.


Cowboy boots last


These are a type of footwear that is widely worn in the western parts of the world, especially those northern America. They have their lasts which ensures that the shoemakers come up with something great at the end of the whole process.


Pump lasts with an open toe.


They are specially made for the production of pumps; therefore, it is very similar to pump last. However, the two only differ at the toe part, where one has a small open toe, and the other has a bit larger toe allowance.


Sandal last


This last is always longer than your feet, and this is to give your feet enough allowance when putting them on. However, it is very rare to find a sandal last that has a pointed toe. The formation of the toe in sandals will only depend on how your toes appear since they cannot be found in different variations.


Lastly, as a cobbler, you need to know that making shoes without having the last is equal to doing unnecessary work. It is this last that will be used from the beginning of the process until the end in making sure that the shoes retain the initial shape. This will also help to determine the quality of the shoes. Therefore, the shoemakers have to make sure that they have the right lasts to make them easy for them.


Steps Three: Creating The Shoe Pattern


Making your shoe pattern, how inspiring; however, this is also artwork on itself. It determines how the shoes will look like, how it will fit you and how it is elementary to create shoes. Most importantly, it will be crucial for the shoemakers and the designers to understand how these patterns are created and how they are supposed to work. Moreover, your experience in the field of shoes making will greatly help you in ensuring that you create the right pattern for your shoes.


This is the part where specific parts of footwear are identified. The parts may include the insole, the sole of the shoes, and the uppers which comprise of the external parts of the shoes. Additionally, each part of your footwear is made separately before they are joined together. However, it will take much time in ensuring that you come with something perfect enough to make your shoes. The greatness of your shoes will always depend on the specialists who did cut the pattern of your footwear.


Furthermore, if there is any mistake that is done, it should be corrected at this very time before the process of making the shoes begins. This will make sure that you do not make shoes that were not recommended. This may probably result in many challenges when the whole process is through. In most cases, when the pattern was not made the right way, the shoes made may not fit you accurately, or it might not look right as what was required initially. Also, the wrong pattern will probably affect the quality of your footwear, and this will make it very uncomfortable.


Creating patterns requires much care; this will ensure that you do not make any mistake in the process. Good results always come when you put full attention on whatever you are doing. When you are committed to what you are doing, you will probably prevent mistakes from happening when you are making your shoes. When you want to have the best pattern for your work, you should consider visiting Freaky Shoes and be able to get the best materials that can be used to produce the best pattern in the shoemaking process.


Step Four: Attaching Everything Together


After the rest of the essential processes are done with, it will be appropriate now to join the parts of the shoes together to make sure that you come up with the right pair of shoes. However, before you continue with the process of attaching these pieces, you should make sure that you have every piece with you to avoid making mistakes. In the industry of shoemaking, this is referred to as the closing.


Additionally, for you to be able to attach the pieces, you should make sure the upper materials of your shoes are ridged, punched, wedged, and pierced. This will probably serve on time used in the whole process. Your upper materials are then taken over a lining and then sewn to fix them together. When this is done, you would have completed; you will be a step ahead in ensuring that you are making the best footwear to be worn or sold.


There is also an additional process that is referred to as the stretching. This process is performed to make sure that the upper materials of your shoe are flexible enough to make the shoes comfortable to the wearer. Also, it is the part where the finished upper material is stretched together over the last materials. This will also make the shoemaker get the right shape and size of the footwear.


Additionally, the stretching process can be at times very challenging; however, this will depend on the materials that are used to make the uppers. For instance, when your footwear is made from leather, it will be quite challenging as you all know that this material is very hard and non-elastic. Therefore, it will require the shoemaker to use a lot of energy to make sure that it stretches. However, this is very different when materials such as synthetic fibres are used.


Lastly, this is the part when the shoemaker will now attach the upper parts of the shoes and the lower (the sole in general). However, for the cobblers to accomplish this, they need to have a powerful agent to attach this part. Freaky Shoes recommends fabric glue or adhesives if you can acquire one of them. Also, you can choose to apply screws, stitches or bolts so long as the upper and the lower are held together. Moreover, it is evident that footwear that is made using this type of closure tends to be more expensive than the other; however, you are assured that they will be created to a higher quality. This will probably make its price realistic and genuine to the buyers.


Step Five: Finishing Touches


Depending on the type of footwear you want to buy, the process of making shoe will only be over when the shoemakers are already through with the finishing touches. Besides, this is the appropriate time that the shoemaker will take to correct all the mistakes that were conducted from the beginning of the whole process. Generally, they will want to make sure that the shoes are on their right formation by trimming, cutting or cleaning to make them of high quality.


However, shoes that have taken a long time in finishing touches tend to be of high quality. You need to understand that the whole process will differ, but it will depend on the manufacturer or the brand of the footwear. Lastly, this is the part where the shoemakers print the brand name of the shoes, including when and where it was packaged and the shoe box.


Handmade Vs. Machine Made Shoes


Machines make most of the shoes that are worn across the world. Many shoemakers, if not all, depending on the new technology and the machines to make their footwear, unlike decades ago where they had to use their hand to make shoes. Moreover, as the demand for shoes increased, the cobblers saw it was better for them to apply the use of a machine to produce mare footwear. Also, they used a device because of its efficiency, and it significantly saves on time.


However, there are very few shoemakers who are still using their hands in the production of shoes, a number that cannot be compared to those who use machines. This is to say that the brands that still make footwear by use of hand are very few; therefore, you will have to pay a lot of money for you to have a pair. This due to the time they spend making them. However, the use of the machine cannot do everything, for example, stretching of the materials; this is something that can only be done by the use of hands. Lastly, if you are choosing means to produce your shoes, you should go for one that is appropriate for you.


Different Parts of Shoes


In the process of making shoes, there are many parts that you need to construct for you to come up with the right shoes. However, for you to know how the whole process of shoemaking is conducted, you will first need to be aware of the parts that are used to construct footwear. Below are some of the parts of shoes;


The Upper


This is the external part of the footwear; however, it can be created from a variety of materials such as leather, synthetic fibre, etc. the content used can also differ in colours thickness and texture.


The Insole


It is found in the inside the shoes which are directly beneath your feet. It is the part that can help you in determining if the shoes are comfortable or not. However, it is something that can be replaced with a new one once it wears out.


The Midsole


Found between the outsole and insole. It provides support to your feet. It is commonly found in sneakers.


The Outsole


Its essential element is to provide traction and support. It is found below the shoes, meaning it is the part that touches the ground directly. It can be made from different materials like leather, rubber or synthetic materials.


The Welt


It is a strip of material that is used to hold together the sole and the upper. It can be made from rubber, leather or plastics.


Bottom Line


Shoes have proven to be an essential element in human’s life. Having shoes in your wardrobe is something that can never go unnoticed. However, for now, you will have known how these are made and the material that is used in their production. The process of making shoe does not only involve the shoemakers only but also you as the buyer or the wearer. However, as an experienced shoemaker, you need to make sure the material you are using to make your shoe are the best, and this can only happen if you visit Freaky Shoes

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