Last weekend I returned to Brooklyn Shoespace for a 5-hour class on making leather slippers. The bootmaking I did last month was amazing but extremely time-consuming. Now that I’m moving on to thinking about iterative design and how to quickly build some electronics into footwear I thought it might be good to learn how to make something a bit simpler. Slippers turned out to be a great fit. Here’s what we made:
The process is fairly straightforward. These are the main steps:
- Trace and cut leather according to pattern. Also cut rubber soles.
- Use rubber cement to tack upper to leather sole.
- Use dividers to measure distance of stitches from slippers edge, as well as stitch length.
- Punch sew holes with awl.
- Sew using a saddle stitch. Tip: for thread, use 4 times the length of the sewn edge + a little more.
- Paint bottom of leather soles + smooth side of rubber soles with shoe glue. Let dry.
- Very carefully attach rubber bottoms to the leather.
- Sand edges.
- Make & add tassles if desired!
See completed slippers above. Next step: adding some electronics!