After the madness of blogging every day for 12 days between us during the course, I have been taking stock of the blog and how it is going. I must say that we are delighted with it. When we started it in 2008, it was a real step in the dark, we had no idea what to expect. We wanted to share our passion for handsewn shoemaking, but did not know how to do it particularly.
And when I read the first posts now, I can see how little direction we had, but soon enough a pattern emerged and the format of doing mini photo essays on very detailed aspects of making bespoke shoes became the norm.
And I think we have had a great response. The validation of our readers is what makes it worth it. Blogging is a very democratic format - people vote with their mouses (mice?). If nobody reads it, then it's just a vanity project. But we are just about to pass 100,000 hits, which feels like a milestone, I mean wow! That is a lot of hits for such a niche subject.
And we get a lot of contact from aspiring shoemakers around the world, both comments and emails, so we know that people are being inspired to pursue our wonderful trade - it's really fantastic.
So, a great big thank you to all of you who are reading this.
As it happens, we had a very satisfying thread started on Style Forum this week, which gave us some very positive feedback. Check it out.
I especially like the quote from the eminent bootmaker D W Frommer II, "the blog is the best one devoted to shoemaking on the Internet". How fantastic is that? We will certainly be quoting that from now on.
I am not trying to blow my own trumpet (well, just a little), as much as emphasize that blogging can be a bit of a lonely activity, so all the feedback you get spurs you on to continue.
This week has been a case of back to the grindstone. Catching up on all the stuff we didn't do while we were teaching.
I finished a rather elegant pair of shoes which are for a wedding. I really like shoes which combine colours and textures, so the navy suede and black calf combo really works for me. And I like the slight twist on a classic design. Being critical, I wish we had blacked the edge of the calf on the vamp and the quarters. This is usually done at the end when you polish the shoes. It would have improved the look. But you always learn something new.
The other thing we did this week was some repairs to shoes we made way back in 2005. It is always good to see how your work stands up to wear, and I was pretty pleased with these shoes. We replaced the top pieces, put on toe plates and gave them a thorough clean and polish. The results are good and the shoes have a lot of life left in them.
It was interesting to see designs we had done years ago. I still like them, it must be said.
The patent shoes had glitter all over them which was very difficult to get off as it sticks to the surface. I had to take it off piece by tiny piece.
And you can see from the last photo that he has unusually curved feet. Some people really need bespoke shoes!
Well, dear readers, that is all for this week. have a great week and, until next Friday, happy shoemaking.
PS I have rectified the little white edge on the vamp and quarters with a pen and a steady hand - nerve wracking!