Jun 12, 2014

4 Design Solutions That Will Make Your Shoes Look Better

It take time to get better in any craft, in any work, practice, practice and then more practice. That is true and you can't go around it, you don't wake up one day to be a professional shoemaker, it takes time, but what can we do until then?

In today's post I will show how you, using design can fix already made mistakes with your shoes and how using design you can prevent issues that you struggle with during your shoemaking process.

During my work as a designer and design courses that I do, I figured out that people have wrong perception of what design is.

Design is not about making cute and pretty drawings of shoes, you been misled and missing the most important point that can help you in your process.

Design is a technical plan for your footwear construction. It's about knowing how technically you can and should construct your shoes, how each part should be connected so your shoes will be wearable, comfortable and beautiful.

If design is a technical thing that means that you can adjust your design to help you, to be your solution to get better looking shoes.

Design solutions 

1. Topline inside seam - If your sewing skills slowing you down and your top line seam always has curved waves, which sure don't compliment your shoes, make an inside seam.
Sew your upper from the inside and then just turn it over, this way if you even made a curve line you still can adjust it without anyone knowing it's there.

2. Welted strip- When you stumble upon situation, where you made not so accurate, not very clean work with your outsole, not a good job in general!

Maybe you sand the bottom to much or if after attaching the outsole you usually can see the glue or you always skive it to much. The solution is simple, create welted strip and attach it to your bottom, the strip will hide any mistake that you usually make there.

You can plan it from the start or you can adjust your design if this situation occurs.

3. Elastic bend solution- I personally love to use elastic bands in my footwear just because it gives so many options to what you can do.

But, if you have a very wide last and no matter what you do your topline is always lose, first make sure that the problem is with your wide last and not mistake that you made with your pattern.

The solution is, to place elastic band inside your topline, it will tight up the upper and it will sit perfectly on the foot.

4. Lasting ripped- Lasting is a difficult process and you do need to practice to do it well. When using very thin upper, during lasing you can over do it.

It happens, especially when you are a beginner and you eager to make perfectly fit shoes.
You don't need to start all over again, just change the design. You can make toe cap shoes.

It will always be elegant and fashionable shoes. Create new toe pattern, cut the unnecessary front part, skive it and stitch it together.

The wonderful thing about design technical solutions that they are very creative and will make your footwear to look great.

I will think of more design solution and will share them on my Twitter, so follow me on twitter to get more design updates and not just, for the last month twitter became kind of my ideas writing tool, so get in touch on twitter.

 Let's see what you think in the comment below.

Have a great weekend 

Sveta Kletina


  1. As I started my shoe making hobby. I have fumbled on all these points and found similar solutions. What is written here is invaluable for people trying to cover up mistakes. I wish someone told me earlier in my journey - but it is never to late. Thanks for the great info Sveta!!!


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