Shear delight to teach sandal-making at the John C Campbell Folk School. My students were a fascinating bunch of talented, hard workers. The campus is gorgeous and enchanting. It was my great good fortunate to teach in the well-appointed wood carving studio, updated over time and built nearly 100 years ago. The school staff was welcoming, generous and genuinely helpful. My housing was oh-so-charming. I have so many stories to tell. I am on the schedule to teach sandal-making next August too.
Deborah’s School of Shoemaking is well underway. These students are taking Shoemaking 101, Oxford or Derby. The beginner class teaches all of the skills to make a pair of cemented shoes of their own design. The class is taught with demonstrations at each stage of building followed by hands on practice of each skill. Students will walk away from the course with a pair of shoes made to fit their feet.
I got some publicity in Mountain Xpress for Deborah’s School of Shoemaking. I recently dreamt up this image of me posing as the Virgin of the Guadalupe and using lasts as the light rays from my halo. I’m so pleased Mountain Xpress used my photo and what an honor for my new school to be featured. Check out my School page because classes are forming all the time. Gather some friends together and we can have a class time whenever works for you.
Imagine my delight when Julyan Davis agreed to do a trade with me for one of his paintings, Creek Study II. He asked if I had any interest in making a Twenties-inspired shoe. Who me? Julyan picked the leather colors and I chose to do a two-tone oxford.
What a blessing when a local man finds me to make him a pair of oxfords. This was my first time working in shell cordovan. What an honor to work is this exalted leather. Gabe was patient with me for I went on to make a second pair of fitters in order to further modify the lasts for his feet and get the perfect fit. We are both pleased with the final results and he even said they were worth the wait.
It couldn’t be more fitting that the Wizard shoes are complete in October. Excited to ship them to my brother tomorrow. These are the largest shoes I’ve made to date, they’re nearly size 14. I broke the derby line rule for the bat-wing design. He’s going to have to open the laces a lot to get his foot in but for the effect I think it’s worth it.
This adorable little red, sole press made the last leg of it’s journey to me here in Asheville last month. Over a year ago my dear friend from Austin, Jim, found this little sweetie at a Massachusetts flea market. The vendor lives in Nashville and planned to be at Canton, Texas, for First Monday and agreed to bring it to Texas. Jim and his wife picked up Little Red in Canton and brought it back to Austin, where I was planning to be last Thanksgiving to visit friends and attend folk dance camp. In October I got a job so was unable to make the trip to Austin. Last month, my very good friends, Ron and Monica (the MoRon’s), brought this well-traveled little gem to me in Asheville on the first leg of their trip to New England for the summer. Thank you to everyone who participated in getting Little Red to me here in Asheville. I just love it. It’s so cute.
I’m pleased to announce that I got a partial run of lasts in this cool toe shape. These lasts are asymmetrical in the front, following the shape of the toes, which makes so much sense from a comfort standpoint. I have never been able to find this shape before but these lasts found me! I’m delighted to have this style available in so many sizes.