Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Thinking About Shoes

Martha Armstrong-Hand has a whole chapter about making shoes for her doll, in her book, so it is something that I would like to try to make for my own dolls, when they are finished. What I would like to try and make are a pair of Mary Janes for Aalish. I will have to dust off my jewelry making skills to make the buckles for the shoes. Otherwise, I know next to nothing about working with leather. I have been watching some wonderful videos about how to make a pair of hand-sewn English shoes on YouTube. I have watched the videos several times now, and have done as much reading about making shoes online as I can.

I think I am finally starting to get an idea of how I can make a pair of shoes for a BJD. Martha Armstrong-Hand used a last. The upper leather is stretched over the last and the inner sole to form the upper part of the shoe. In human sized shoes, a welt may be sewn to the upper leather that is wrapped under the inner sole, and the welt is sewn to the outer sole. A mid-sole fills in the spaces.

There will be a heel, but since Aalish's feet will be flat, her foot will have to fit inside the shoes straight, without bending. While I still have a lot to think about before I start making a pair of practice shoes, I do feel like I am beginning to get a fairly good overview of how to make a nice looking pair of shoes for Aalish, when she is finished. I am thinking I will make the lasts for her shoes from Sculpey. I have decided that I will be doing more gluing with Contact Cement and Super Glue, than stitching, on such a small pair of shoes. If there are going to be any stitches at all, they will probably be more decorative than functional.

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