Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Cut 'n Sew: Heels And Soles Repaired

The last time I posited about this burgundy oxford, I was enquiring as to whether the sole, that was coming off at the time, could be fully repaired. I was able to get the heel fixed however the rest of the sole just couldn't be fixed. I'm inclined to think that the 'cobbler' was inexperienced in this kind of work because the soles were just glued with normal rubber glue. Suffice to say, the glue started coming off within a few days.
The main problem was the leather sole peeling off and therefore exposing the weak construction of the shoe. Shoes that are manufactured and bonded with glue will fall apart sooner or later. As opposed to shoes with a semblance of welt stitching, they will last longer especially if made of quality materials.
This is one of my favourite pair of shoes and repairing the soles and restoring has been a goal for quite some time. On one my weekend trips to Joburg, a few months ago, I decided to take the shoes to a place called Levingers; a dry clean, tailoring and alterations and shoe repair shop. After consulting with the shoe repairer, he explained the whole process to me and how long it would take. The above image shows the shoes after repair. The leather has been taken out completely and replaced with a Phillips rubber sole. The thick rubber heel has also been replaced with a slimmer, lighter version. I have to admit that the rubber sole has added a little bit of weight to the shoe, however, I don't think this'll stop me from wearing them in summer. The sole has been reinforced and there are no visible spaces between the layers of the sole. It cost me R650 to have them repaired; that's the price of a decent pair of Barker's or Bishop's.
I am happy with the outcome and I think I'll be able to wear them for another five years.
PG: Man to man, generation to generation.

1 comment:

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