In search of custom shoemaker

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keacobb

Re: In search of custom shoemaker

#26 Post by keacobb » Mon Dec 04, 2006 1:00 pm

Looking for a local shoemaker---within 100 miles of Philadelphia.---- I am a costume designer/textile artist working on a project "100-mile suit" I am costuming the curator of an art exhibition on local collaborations. I would like to commission a regional shoemaker to make a pair of shoes (11 1/2 mens) out of locally manufactured material (woven cloth or hide--i can provide material). I am working with regional weavers, spinners, dyers, patternmakers--the outfit is local and sincere collaboration!

I can felt, weave, make buttons and even crochet underwear but shoes i need some outside help!

Any advice, resources, information, reccomendations welcome.
Thanks in advance!
Kelly

you can read more about the project:www.garmentresearch.blogspot.com

have you heard of the 100 mile diet?
www.100milediet.org

lancepryor
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Re: In search of custom shoemaker

#27 Post by lancepryor » Mon Dec 04, 2006 2:43 pm

Perry Ercolino is one of the country's leading bespoke shoemakers; he is located in Doylestown, which I believe is a suburb of Philly. However, be prepared for sticker shock....

http://www.perryercolino.com

labellefemme

Re: In search of custom shoemaker

#28 Post by labellefemme » Thu May 31, 2007 5:54 pm

New Victorian costuming shop in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania is looking for someone to reproduce mid-19th century ladies ball/formal shoes. Have original pair of shoes as an example, numerous images and a period shoe manual for reference, but need someone who can make a comfortable reproduction shoe for resale at our shop. Can assist in providing materials. Please reply to Samantha Rife at info@labelle-femme.com if interested.

luckyduck

Re: In search of custom shoemaker

#29 Post by luckyduck » Mon Jul 09, 2007 1:13 pm

Hey Everyone,

I was talking with a woman this weekend who is looking for shoes that I don't know how to make and wondered if anyone else wants to jump on it.

She wants period 1860-1890 boots for the re-enactment shooter events. Would prefer a women's boot, but could live with a cowboy style. She said she did not have any foot issues to work around.

Let me know if you are interested. She lives in western Illinois.

Paul Opperman

relferink

Re: In search of custom shoemaker

#30 Post by relferink » Thu Jul 26, 2007 11:52 am

New England Shoemakers,

A customer of mine made me aware of how difficult it is to find a qualified custom shoemaker, in spite of websites and yellow pages listings we seem to get lost in the shuffle easily. Since this customer runs a marketing office I was given an idea or two what to do about it.

We have set up a website and want to make it a comprehensive directory of everyone making footwear in New England (starting with this corner of the world and see where it goes from here). The goal is a customer information site, not selling anything. Listings will be free of charge, referrals coming from the site are free of charge.
To be included please send contact information to info@NewEnglandShoemakers.org. There will be a section for outside New England as well and we are including shoemakers, bootmakers, sandal makers and everything else footwear. The only requirement is that the footwear is made locally, controlling the entire process for obvious quality reasons.

Rob

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Re: In search of custom shoemaker

#31 Post by ljc » Sat Nov 17, 2007 12:11 pm

I am having difficulty finding suitable custom shoes for my needs. I was born with fibular hemimelia and wear one shoe mounted on an elevation which is supported by a free-motion brace, attached by a caliper plate. I am looking for people with similar needs who have been successful in having such shoes made.

relferink

Re: In search of custom shoemaker

#32 Post by relferink » Sat Nov 17, 2007 3:13 pm

Lisa,

First of all, welcome to the Crispin Colloquy. Here you will find a group of highly skilled crafts people that may be able to help you on your quest for suitable custom made shoes.

As this is a forum dedicated to preserve and protect the skills and knowledge involved in boot and shoe making. You will find mostly boot and shoemakers, not to many customers visit regularly. There are likely other discussion groups on the Internet where you may be able to find people with the same condition that have been through the process of having custom shoes made. Here you may find the shoemakers that made those shoes.

Personally I have no experience with your specific condition. A few questions come to mind that may make it easier to advise you on a course of action. First of all, where are you located? It is very difficult to make a good fitting custom orthopedic shoe for someone that can not be personally measured by the shoemaker and for this type of shoe it is not uncommon that multiple fitting visits are desirable.
Additionally it may be helpful for you to elaborate on the need for custom shoes, have you had surgery, are there any foot deformities? The buildup under the shoe and the attachment of a brace caliper are fairly standard and often done by modifying a factory made shoe. Not that you could not have shoes made but it would be helpful to know if you are able to wear factory made shoes.
How much is the leg length difference in your case? Your doctor and orthotist (the person making the brace) are also important in communicating their requirements for the shoes. If the shoe and brace do not work together well they will not help you much.

It is my understanding that Fibular Hemimelia is a rare condition. It may be hard to find a maker with much specific experience. If anyone on the forum has experience with this condition please make yourself know, on forum or through private email. The treatment if the form of buildups and brace attachments is something done for many more conditions and is not nearly as specific to your condition. You should be able to find someone experienced who can handle that for you.

Hope this helps,

Rob

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Re: In search of custom shoemaker

#33 Post by cordphilip » Sun Nov 18, 2007 5:14 am

Hello Lisa

I have to agree with Rob on this point... you really need to make yourself available to a shoemaker for measurements and a series of fittings, but there are very few shoemakers IN THE WORLD with the experience to take on these jobs.

I know that talking to my friend Frank Jones who attends the HCC meetings in the US, that finding these skills available locally might be a problem, we need a worldwide register of skills really. However, if you fancy a trip to the UK for a couple of weeks, I will do all you need while you're here. I have had a good look at your condition on the net and see no problem making good footwear for you.

Whatever your decision regarding footwear, good luck !! Philip. www.thecordwainer.co.uk

ted_andrews
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Re: In search of custom shoemaker

#34 Post by ted_andrews » Sun Dec 02, 2007 5:23 pm

Can anyone recommend some good custom shoemakers in Buenos Aires who are experienced in making men's shoes in classic styles?

Thanks.

Edward Andrews

relferink

Re: In search of custom shoemaker

#35 Post by relferink » Fri Jan 25, 2008 3:04 pm

Thread about footwear terms, dictionaries and such moved to Open Forum: Sources: Books, Manuals, Publications for future reference.

Rob
Moderator Crispin Colloquy

godgifu

Re: In search of custom shoemaker

#36 Post by godgifu » Sun Apr 20, 2008 6:33 pm

I'm looking for shoemakers for a production of a play set in the 1740s. I'm hoping to make the costumes look as authentic as possible, and unfortunately, in the USA it is very difficult to get straight-lasted upper-class shoes for the era! (Most places only make/sell military type shoes, of the 1770s-1780s.) I do have pictures of the kinds of shoes I am after, mainly from works by Hogarth and Boucher.

The production would probably be sometime in the fall (exact dates have yet to be set by the playhouse) and I don't mind possibly using several shoemakers -- the show would use about 11 or 12 pairs, both male and female. We could make do with as few as 4 different styles of shoe if they could be made in 2 or 3 different colors of leather. Also, the script for the play actually specifies one of the women should wear satin slippers, though if no one works with fabric shoes I don't see why making them of leather would harm anything.

Due to the currently unfavorable exchange rates, US makers are preferred, but would be willing to talk with anyone who can help.

hidesmith
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Re: In search of custom shoemaker

#37 Post by hidesmith » Mon Apr 21, 2008 6:43 am

Talia,
I'm interested in conversing with you about your project. Where are you located? Please contact me privately at email:

hidesmith@aol.com

We will be out of town until Sat or Sun, but will have sporadic web connections in the meantime.
Thanks,

Bruce Graham

large_shoemaker_at_large
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Re: In search of custom shoemaker

#38 Post by large_shoemaker_at_large » Mon Apr 21, 2008 8:21 am

Talia
I have made silk shoes before. Can you send some pics? I'll see if I can help
Regards
Brendan

deltoroshoes

Re: In search of custom shoemaker

#39 Post by deltoroshoes » Mon Jul 21, 2008 7:37 pm

Del Toro Shoes is looking for an experienced shoemaker / repair expert in South Florida. The job consists of hand lasting men's and women's slippers and finishing leather soles. We will pay top salary and are also willing to pay relocating expenses. If interested or know someone who maybe interested please contact Nathanial Wish at 561-471-1118.
All the best,
Del Toro Shoes
www.deltoroshoes.com

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sorrell
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Re: In search of custom shoemaker

#40 Post by sorrell » Thu Aug 07, 2008 1:51 pm

Kathy Jo Higgins is looking for a bootmaker who can build mules (slip on boots/no counter or tops) in large quantities. She has a line of mules but currently no bootmaker to build them. Her email address is bluesboots@aol.com and her phone number is 405-501-5210.

eriess

Re: In search of custom shoemaker

#41 Post by eriess » Mon Sep 22, 2008 10:53 am

My wife is looking for someone who can duplicate a pair of Mephisto shoes, which are no longer manufactured by the company.
If you can help please drop me an email at eriess@earthlink.net.
Thank you,
Eric Riess

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Re: In search of custom shoemaker

#42 Post by ted_andrews » Sat Oct 25, 2008 12:32 pm

I am looking for a firm or craftsman that will replace the felt coverings on Spenco cork orthopedic shoe inserts.

Thanks.

Ted Andrews
edandrews@earthlink.net

relferink

Re: In search of custom shoemaker

#43 Post by relferink » Sun Oct 26, 2008 7:01 am

Ted,

With many of the active members at the AGM you may have to wait a little longer for an answer.

In the mean time I'm curious about the insert. I don't know of a cork insert made by Spenco. The Spenco company is known for their foam rubber, I have not see them use felt. Is it a custom made shoe insert?
Re-covering the Spenco brand foam rubber is usually not a problem. Some shoe repair outfits will do this or look for an orhopedic shoe store. They can do the work or be able to refer you to someone who can.
If you can't find anyone post a picture of the insert, seeing what it's made of and how it's layered will allow someone here to give more specific advice.

Rob

wildbug

Re: In search of custom shoemaker

#44 Post by wildbug » Sun Nov 23, 2008 2:04 am

My boyfriend has severe environmental illness and is looking for someone who can make him a nontoxic pair of army-style boots that come up above the ankles/shins.

He was working with a shoemaker and had leather cut out and was off-gassing it for two years. Now she told him that she didn't give him enough leather to make the boots and she decided not to continue the job. He has already spent $$ and invested 2 years in off-gassing the leather to prepare it. Is there someone that would be able to work with him to complete this job? If the boots are tolerable for him, he would then order 2 more pairs of the same kind.

Another option would be if anyone has a pair of army-style boots in men's size 9.5 wide - 11 normal that have been sitting unused for 4 or more years in a relatively safe place (no pesticides, solvents, chemicals in room). (Basically, he needs to prepare the leather by setting it in the sun to bake off the smells for a year or two. This process would take longer if the boots were already made and he had to offgass them like that since the sun would not reach the interior...this is why I ask for a pair that is 4 years old or more.)

If you know of shoemakers that take care to use the least toxic glues and materials, please also forward their contact info.

This is a desperate situation, as his current boots are completely falling apart and make it very hard for him to walk. The soles are in pieces and the front is busted wide open exposing his toes. He has it all tied together with shoelaces, but they constantly fall apart as he walks. I hope someone can help us figure out how to get a pair of boots made for him.

Please email me at j_genser@hotmail.com.

Thank you!!!
Julie

(Message edited by wildbug on November 23, 2008)

chuck_deats

Re: In search of custom shoemaker

#45 Post by chuck_deats » Sun Nov 23, 2008 8:57 am

Julie,--Not an expert on this and would in no way attempt the job. Have you considered de-gassing ordinary boots in a vacuum chamber? There are many labs with small chambers and could rig infrared lights to control the temperature, then backfill with an inert gas. This would accomplish in hours what is now taking years. How to keep them from re-absorbing gasses from the atmosphere would be a problem. What leather would look like after all the volatiles are removed, I am not sure. This is common practice for space hardware and would be much cheaper than the custom boots you are considering.

FWIW, Chuck

marcell

Re: In search of custom shoemaker

#46 Post by marcell » Sun Nov 23, 2008 9:26 am

A shoe made without non-toxic glues? That will be very expensive... Only pegged or stitched technologies can be applied, without glues, attaching the sole.. You can just have veg tanned leather to the sole and the upper. These kind of shoes were made one hundred years ago.

On the other hand - even you save your boyfriend from the gas, coming out from the shoe - where will he wear them? Any city is 100 times more poisoning, than a few grams of glue in a shoes...

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Re: In search of custom shoemaker

#47 Post by large_shoemaker_at_large » Sun Nov 23, 2008 12:29 pm

Julie
Many years ago I saw shoes offered in Antelope hide as the skin was considered non irritating, i'm thinking due to the tanning process but I haven't seen anything lately.
Antelope is a memeber of the goat family and found around here buy the 1.0000's I haven't hunted in years so I can't get one for you. But I don't know were you live but the local First Nations AKA Native Americans did Brain tanning with deer, moose etc. this would be an alternative, If you could fine a person with such knowledge. There are directions on the internet I have seen.

I have made canvas boots for a vegetarian and one may use hide glue, but as for durability I have no idea.
Does he have a set of lasts made?
Regards
Brendan

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Re: In search of custom shoemaker

#48 Post by tmattimore » Sun Nov 23, 2008 1:29 pm

Just a question for the group if you use undyed veg tan what needs to out gas? You will leech out what tannic acid is left by soaking before lasting.
Tom

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Re: In search of custom shoemaker

#49 Post by dw » Sun Nov 23, 2008 2:09 pm

IMNSHO, there's nothing to outgas with veg tan leathers. I'm not sure you'll leech out all the tannic acid, in any event, but even if you do, to some extent I'm with Marcel in wondering how an individual avoids all the by-products of a modern petro-chemical based civilization.

Just take tannic acid as an example...it's not petro-chemical in any regard. But it's present in numerous natural materials. Avoiding tannic acid means you would have to exclude all black tea, any contact with tree bark, and probably many other sources which I'm not immediately aware of.

Beyond that I think whatever problem this fellow might have it must be due more to the cements used in construction than to the leather regardless of how it's tanned. Chrome tan leathers are tanned from mineral salts for one thing.

Sure dying might inject chemicals into the leather, but I seriously doubt that any of the hides I buy are "fresh." I would bet that a lot of what we get has been sitting on the warehouse floor for over six months and probably a year or more. What possible advantage could be gain by aging them a further couple of years?

Finally, sitting in the sun is a recipe for taking all the life out of a piece of leather. If there are any chemicals to "outgas" they are probably derived from the very nutrients and conditioners that keep leather from becoming so much "dust in the wind."

Just one opinion...your mileage may vary...

Tight Stitches
DWFII--HCC Member

marcell

Re: In search of custom shoemaker

#50 Post by marcell » Sun Nov 23, 2008 2:30 pm

Thanks DW! I didn't want to be so radical... but why not.

I think that this "outgas" stuff is just marketing, nothing else. I searched this term on google, and what did I found? A company selling products with this theory.

I love the smell of the leather - and if this theory would be true - all the leather sellers would be seriously ill. Sorry. Buy products, what you consider healthy for you, but don't think that there is any truth beyond this marketing stuff.

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