Cobbler/Shoemaker Teri Edmonds has 17 years of experience with shoes, shoemaking and shoe repair. The cornerstone of her shoe repair experience was the commitment to using the best products the market has to offer.
The following shoe repair products are listed by type of repair, i.e., gluing, stretching, mending and patching, as well as general shoe care and maintenance. Visit our Tutorials link at the end of each to find out how to do the project like a professional from beginning to end.
There are so many different techniques used throughout the years, but the repair supplies have not changed much. Shoe makers around the globe use a form of glue, sharp knives and stitching tools. If you are an aspiring shoemaker, safety is of the utmost importance, so we recommend the use of gloves, protective eyewear, and respirators combined with good ventilation.
Shoemaking and shoe repair are part of the guided crafts and take years of experience to be able to identify the problem and an appropriate solution. It is important to go easy on yourself and expectations as to the end result. In some situations, shoe repair is its best when practiced over and over. Much of the learning curve is accomplished through trial and error. It is in this journey that you develop your own style and flare.
When providing the service of shoe repair, always look for a way to add value to the client. Some of the best advice is to take your time and attempt to make the item look it did originally. Sometimes, you might want to do a little extra to surprise the client. This behavior will help you develop a long-term, stable business.
In this gluing tutorial you will learn the four basic steps to glue most types of shoes. This video starts with a list of tools and supplies used in most gluing. The rest of the video highlights the four basic steps to gluing shoes. Cobbler Teri Edmonds demonstrates these four basic steps and provides links to additional videos that address the different types of shoes that fall into 3 main categories. The linked video tutorials demonstrate an Air Jordan, Birkenstock clog, a basic flat and a sneaker with a wrap around sole. All supplies can be purchase easily by clicking the Amazon links below.
Step 1 – Disassemble the shoe
Step 2 – Sand surface of sole and shoe
Step 3 – Apply glue to both surfaces and let dry for 20 minutes. If the shoe is of a molded sole construction, meaning the sole wraps along the sides of the upper, you will want to put the shoe together wet.
Step 4 – Assemble the shoe starting with the toes and the heels. Once you have confirmed that the front and back match properly, you can assemble the rest of the shoe.
Buying supplies – The products recommended here have been selected by cobbler Teri Edmonds for all levels of shoemakers. A respirator is recommended even if the room has good ventilation. The oil can is a very handy tool for all workshops. The glue doesn’t dry out and makes getting into the small areas, easier. A screwdriver on hand is useful for prying materials apart. Using a rough grit sandpaper also allows for the easy removal of old glue or paint that is peeling from the upper. The best paint to buy for touch up purposes is the Angeles.
Allen Edmonds shoes are finely crafted in the USA and can be best preserved with a Topy half sole and heel. In this video I demonstrate how to apply the half sole and heel and how to give the shoes a professional polish.
Episode 1 of Maui Artisans is about making curtains for the blogging studio. This preliminary video is the first of many. Lighting and sound were tested for future episodes. Future topics will follow Jen and Teri as they make things, critique food and wine and blog about it. Visit MauiArtisans.com and subscribe to the channel to follow Jen and Teri and their adventures of “making” things.
Insoles are a regular repair for cobbler Teri Edmonds. This slideshow presents a quick review of some projects. Insoles can change the look and comfort of a shoe. A leather insole is preferable to synthestic insole because it lasts longer. The soft leather insoles (called socklinings) are easiest to skive (thin with a razor knife), which is done for the seam under the toes so it can’t be felt. It is fun to use colorful insoles, but black, brown, beige and white insoles are the easiest to find.
Arch supports and other inserts can also be added to an insole. The last few pictures in the photo gallery show a large arch that was added under the soft leather socklining. Frequently, a soft pad is added to the underside of the insole to make it padded. The pad extends withing a quarter inch of the insole and then it is all glued to the shoe.