How to Make Shoes : The Basics

How to Make Shoes

how shoe are madeIf you want to learn how to make shoes you have come to the right place!  I’m going to explain the modern, most common ways that shoes are made. This is how the big brands like Nike™, Adidas™, and even Walmart make shoes. This basic shoemaking technique applies to almost all running shoes, basketball shoes, dress shoes, work boots, etc……so let’s get started!


Shoemaking Steps

Let’s talk about the steps in shoemaking. The basic idea is to sew the upper in a shape that resembles a sock, then stretch the upper over a foot-shaped form called a last.

how to make shoes the sho least forms the shoeOnce the upper is stretched over the last, the shoe bottom is glued, stitched, or nailed to the shoe upper. When the last is removed the shoe is complete. That is the most basic explanation of how to make shoes, but within each step are many variables and complications.

First, the shoe upper can be sewn together from one or many parts. The key here is the shape or “shoe pattern” of the upper.  To make the flat, sewn parts, fit to the 3D shape, requires “spring” in the shoe pattern. This work can be done by hand or by computer. When a shoe is in development the pattern maker may need to make a few attempts to get the shape just right. This is why shoes tend to be made of a material that has some stretch, like leather. Leather may be the perfect shoe making material. It’s strong, stretchable, and shrinkable.

shoe lasts A standard Sport Shoe Last
A standard sports shoe last
A women's high heel shoe last
A women’s high heel shoe last

Once the shoe upper is sewn, the next step in shoemaking is to pull the upper onto the last. The upper must be tight so it can be stretched to take the shape of the shoe last. Dry heat or steam is often used to soften the uppers, getting them ready to stretch. Once on the last, they are often cooled to shrink them down tight to the last before the shoe bottom can be attached.
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book How to make shoes PFD downloadLearn more about how to make shoes in our book
How Shoes are Made.

learn how to make shoes:

Footwear design book Free PFD Shoe Design Book Download जूते कैसे बनते हैंDo you want to learn how big brands make shoes?  Now you can!  How Shoes are Made will show you how modern shoes come to life! More than just a tour through a sneaker factory and more than your average shoe making book!  This is the perfect Shoe design a handbook for footwear designers.  From drawing shoe designs to sample development and footwear manufacturing, you will learn how it is all done. Written by veteran shoemaking pros, How Shoes are Made will give you a look inside the REAL world of shoe design, development, and mass production. This book teaches shoe making for beginners and students. 220 pages with over 400 color photos and drawings. 26 chapters explaining shoe design, footwear pattern making, sample development, footwear materials selection, upper stitching, outsole and tooling design, shoe lasts, shoe costing, quality inspections, pattern making and much more!  A must-read for young shoe designers, sneakerheads, or any footwear fanatic! Secure payments Visa, MasterCard & PayPal. Over 3500 copies sold! Read in over 60 countries!
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Print Edition Now Available!  

Table of Contents:

The Design Process, Shoe Development, Shoe Patterns, Shoe Specifications, Outsole Tooling, Development Process, Pre-Production, Material Preparation, Stitching Operations, Rubber Pressing, EVA Forming, The Assembly Line, The Shoe Last, Footwear Costing, Importing Shoes, Shoe Logo Design, Leather for Shoes, Textiles for Shoes ,Synthetics for Shoes,  Foam for Shoes, Know Your Footbeds, Material Suppliers, Shoe Designers Tools, Jobs in the Shoe Trade ,Quality Control, Starting a Shoe Company, Life at a Shoe Factory, Shoe Making Dictionary

If you want to learn more, check out our new books.

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Shoemaking Books / Go to Shoemaking Tools

E-Book edition 220 pages. PC and Mac compatible PDF file. Download Now!

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Print Edition, 250 Pages with over 400 color photos and drawings.

Print edition 330 color photos,  28 Chapters, 195 Pages order today!

Print Edition, 220 pages with over 400 color photos and drawings.

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Shoe Designers

Two softcover books, paper pattern and Blue Print. Free downloads included!

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E-Book edition 170 pages. Profit margin and Size run calculators. Download Now!

A must have for anyone serious about launching a new footwear company!

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