When last we left the great shoe creation experiment we had one pair of shoes without soles and one pair of slippers in the sewing stage.
|Chris's shoes and my partially sewn slippers
The exterior soling is a heat moldable material that comes in a sheet. You cut a sole, heat it, press it to your foot, and it conforms to the shape. Pretty cool, right?
|Laying out the shoes
|Pressing hot material to the shoe
|See the arch swerve? Cool.
|Cutting away excess
|Smooshing on contact cement
|Sand, sand, sand
~Chris wore his shoes on our cruise and walked many, many miles on cobble and hard macadam streets. They performed beautifully even walking downhill in steep Madeira.
~I used puffy paint on my yellow/purple slippers and get plenty of traction, no issues there.
~None of the shoes are waterproof. We purchased spray waterproofing and will try it soon.
~My green shoes are a bit wider than I'd like. The slippers tie tightly since they have no sole but the felt shoes can't tighten enough because the glued sole holds them open. I need to cut a more narrow soling material and be more careful with the molding. I also have to do better with stitching as you can just see the front seam at the toe.
~Chris likes to pull on his shoes without untying them. Unfortunately that stresses the back heel seam stitching and it split on one shoe. I'll add reinforcing to his shoes in future and see if I can get him stretch laces too.
~The yoga/exercise matting is super comfortable to walk on but does compress permanently after heavy use (see first note). The good news is it's very easy to cut and insert new insoles.
I definitely have more shoes planned. I got some leather working tools and scrap leather recently and will be experimenting with those. Plus I want to reverse the colors on the green/red shoes since I have enough felt left over to do so. Chris too has already made requests for future pairs. He loves how these fit and feel.