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Mrs Johnson
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« on: August 27, 2014, 06:32:20 AM »

do i need a last to make a pair of 'boots' like these made by amy?

http://adayin1862.blogspot.com/2012/03/one-shoe-down-one-to-go.html

or even a pair of lady's gaiters?  i'm tired of hunting for shoes that will 'work' lol.
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Miss Lydia
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« Reply #1 on: August 27, 2014, 05:40:20 PM »

Technically, yes. Having a last makes things easier and will help you get a better fit, and if the soles are thick leather that will require wooden pegs or tacks, you'll have the worst time (if you succeed at all) making them without a last. A shoe tree (a metal last on a stand) is needed if you're going to use tacks. As you're pounding in the tacks, the tacks hit the iron last and bends the tips of the tacks so that if your insoles wear completely through to the tacks, they won't stab into the feet.

However, turned shoes like those can be made without a last if you'd like.

If it makes you feel better, wooden lasts can be found reasonably priced on ebay and can be tweaked to make a better fit (originally, lasts would be carved for an individual for an exact copy of their foot)


I'm learning shoemaking and hopefully will be able to offer reproduction children's shoes for reenactors Smiley I think that's where the greatest need for repro shoes is, is with children, if there's interest lol
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Stephanie Brennan
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« Reply #2 on: August 28, 2014, 09:37:17 AM »

My children are well into adult sizes now, but I made their shoes before that. 
   I made several sets of turned boots. If I  made the upper from cloth and only foxed the toe and heel I could go without a last. If I used leather for the upper I would still recommend a last for shaping. If you make a turned shoe, you can always have a shoe repairman place a heavier sole on the bottom.

   It may be discouraging once you figure out what all you need to put it together, but many things can be adapted from what you have at home. Old lasts can be tricky, as you  need to find them in the right size and purchase a pair of both right and left or find a straight. Do you have a jigsaw? You can make your own flat wood last to fit your child's foot and get the right period shape.

  Did Amy place a tutorial?

   
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Mrs Johnson
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« Reply #3 on: August 28, 2014, 09:47:47 AM »

i've been looking at lasts on ebay.  i'm confused as to whether they just need to have a squared toe and the whole toe box area needs to be straigt/squared.  or if the toe needs to be squared and the tow box can have some curves.

like this one {if it works, i'm going to buy it for myself lol}
http://www.ebay.com/itm/Antique-Vintage-Wooden-Shoe-Lasts-Forms-Pair-Size-9C-/331303496209?pt=Folk_Art&hash=item4d233a2a11

or these
http://www.ebay.com/itm/Childrens-Childs-Wood-Wooden-Pair-SIZE-6D-Shoe-Lasts-Molds-Cobbler-Primitive-/351142718288?pt=Folk_Art&hash=item51c1bcab50

http://www.ebay.com/itm/Antique-Vintage-Wooden-Two-Part-Shoe-Last-Form-/360938058922?pt=Folk_Art&hash=item540995b4aa

this one looks like it has a more squared off toe box
http://www.ebay.com/itm/Antique-Vintage-Wooden-Shoe-Mold-Last-D2-Hinged-Metal-Sole-Left-Foot-L201-/360975892495?pt=Folk_Art&hash=item540bd7000f

this one is lovely!  too small for my kiddos though
http://www.ebay.com/itm/Antique-Wooden-Childs-Shoe-Last-/160933295295?pt=Folk_Art&hash=item25785f34bf

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Mrs Johnson
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« Reply #4 on: August 28, 2014, 09:49:48 AM »

Amy hasn't posted a tutorial, that i've found anyway.

we do have a jigsaw.  how would we go about making a partial last?  dh will be so 'pleased' to have another project lol!

i'm not ready for total leather just yet, lol.
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Heidi Hollister
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« Reply #5 on: August 28, 2014, 10:37:07 AM »

Mrs. Johnson, I too am tired of trying to find "good enough shoes." I am working on this same project myself using canvas lining, wool outers and faux leather foxing (Wanna learn to do it before using the good stuff.)  I'm still figuring out all the details, but it seems to me that making the uppers is the easy part. I got some metal straight lasts for a ridiculously good price at an antique store, but I'm not totally sure how to use them properly yet.  There IS a tutorial for turned shoes though... let me see if I can find it.

http://www.thegracefullady.com/1860sShoes/  There you go.  THere's a good start for what you have to do.  I own "Every Lady Her Own Shoemaker" and it is a WONDERFUL resource.  I'd definitely make that investment before plunging ahead with this project.
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Heidi Hollister
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« Reply #6 on: August 28, 2014, 10:52:20 AM »

Here's another for 1830s shoes...  similar principles.

http://costumegirl.wordpress.com/
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Mrs Johnson
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« Reply #7 on: August 28, 2014, 11:48:08 AM »

i hadn't seen that second one.  thanks!

i wish i could find the book locally, i always hate waiting for shipping!  oh well, off to order it lol.
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~ Jennifer
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« Reply #8 on: August 28, 2014, 02:25:09 PM »

Wooden lasts are really just a cross between a model of a person's foot, and features of the fashionable shoe shape of the time. The toe should have the appropriate square shape, of course, but it's welcome to have curves on the vamp. I highly recommend making a last (a straight - they mold to the shape of the feet easily and will save time and some money) that is much more precise to your child's foot, if you can. A purchased last is sort of like purchasing a dress pattern that has off-the-rack measurements on its sizing chart. It'll generally need some tweaking if you want the fit to be perfect. Getting a last that needs the least tweaking is hard to do on the internet, imo.

I don't think you quite need a last yet, from the sound of your project.
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Heidi Hollister
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« Reply #9 on: August 28, 2014, 06:21:58 PM »

Mrs. Johnson, I was reluctant to wait for shipping myself, but when it arrived, I was SO glad I did.  It made much more sense after that and it has patterns in it too.
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Mrs Johnson
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« Reply #10 on: August 30, 2014, 03:55:11 PM »

are there any patterns that are available online?  i'm going to order the book, but we only have a bit less than a month until our next event.

what kind of leather should the foxing be made of?  i can't get kidskin, but i can get 3-3.5oz leather.

and what were the uppers made from?  i'm hesitant to make kid shoes out of silk... but i don't know what linen/cotton mix Amy used. Or i can use wool.

can i use 100% linen?  i have some left over from SCA stuff.
« Last Edit: August 30, 2014, 04:05:44 PM by Mrs Johnson » Logged

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Mrs Johnson
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« Reply #11 on: September 01, 2014, 07:03:24 PM »

could this be 1860's?



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Ginger Lane
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« Reply #12 on: September 02, 2014, 06:17:05 AM »

are there any patterns that are available online?  i'm going to order the book, but we only have a bit less than a month until our next event.

what kind of leather should the foxing be made of?  i can't get kidskin, but i can get 3-3.5oz leather.

and what were the uppers made from?  i'm hesitant to make kid shoes out of silk... but i don't know what linen/cotton mix Amy used. Or i can use wool.

can i use 100% linen?  i have some left over from SCA stuff.

For foxing, any lightweight non-suede leather should work. I would use wool for the uppers; it seems to have been very common. It will also stretch and shape easier than any other material.
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Ginger Lane
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« Reply #13 on: September 02, 2014, 07:39:09 AM »

could this be 1860's?





I'm really not sure; but women's shoes/gaiter boots from 1830-1860 are difficult to date because the style changed so little. The lack of a heel on a woman's shoe would definitely point to the earlier date. But since these are children's, a heel is unlikely anyway. In any case, the style is perfectly acceptable.
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Heidi Hollister
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« Reply #14 on: September 02, 2014, 08:36:05 AM »

Godey's and Petersons magazines regularly have infant and children's slippers and shoe patterns if you aren't afraid of enlarging or adjusting to fit.

The shoes I'm working on are wool.  I wouldn't use silk on children's shoes, they're only gonna wreck them the first day they wear them.  Wool will brush out and be lightweight. 

Every Lady Her Own Shoemaker mentions kid leather for foxing, but I'd say the idea is soft, flexible leather.  Something to boost the wear you'll get out of the shoes.  I found some Horween's scrap saddle leather for the soles, very hard to find, but if I'm right, that's good stuff for soles.
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Mrs Johnson
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« Reply #15 on: September 02, 2014, 12:04:46 PM »

what weight of wool? i have tropical weight suiting, coating and something in-between.  i'm thinking that the suiting will be ok since it'll have a lining of cotton duck. and the others would be bulky and hot.

i have the book on order, i just hope it doesn't take forever to get here.
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« Reply #16 on: September 02, 2014, 01:29:18 PM »

I'd use the suiting, too, or maybe the in-between. Coating is really heavy.  This is where scale can get you: What wouldn't be too hard to work with or turn in a full-size shoe may be very difficult on a miniature shoe.
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Heidi Hollister
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« Reply #17 on: September 02, 2014, 05:26:39 PM »

What Ginger said.
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Mrs Johnson
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« Reply #18 on: September 03, 2014, 09:47:02 AM »

one last question... for a while anyway lol.

is 8oz leather ok for soles?  it's belly, so not necessarily the best quality, but it's good enough for me {and the soles of shoes lol}.  i got enough for 3-5 pairs of shoes for $10.
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« Reply #19 on: September 04, 2014, 05:57:12 AM »

As far as I can tell, 8 oz is half the weight/thickness of true sole leather. BUT for children's shoes, especially ones that won't be getting daily wear (and that they'll be growing out of), I think it would be okay. I haven't actually done it myself, so take this just for an opinion! Smiley
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