How are shoes constructed
Goodyear Welted Construction
One of the oldest and the most traditional methods of footwear construction is Goodyear welted, the method and machinery for this process was invented by a gentleman called Charles Goodyear Jnr, the Welt is the strip of Leather (sometimes a synthetic Welt is used) which runs around the outside edge of the shoe, this is then stitch through and attached to the upper and the insole, this is a great manufacturing method as the sole can be easily replaced and a new one stitched on, check out our Burley and Balmoral’s in our Impregnable collection, these are not machine Welted these are Genuine Hand Welted.
Blake Stitched Construction
Around the same time Charles Goodyear Jnr invented the method of the Goodyear Welt construction another American Lyman Reed Blake invented the Blake Stitch Construction Method, this was a much simpler method in which a single row of stitching inside the upper attaches to the out-sole, this method of construction has no rib attached to the in-sole (unlike Goodyear Welts) which some argue makes this type of construction more flexible. Just like Goodyear Welted Blake Stitched Footwear is fully repairable.
This is exactly what it says on the tin, the sole is cemented to the upper, that simple.
With modern techniques and adhesives cemented shoes are very strong and hard wearing, we use this construction predominantly on rubber sole products, unlike Leather sole which can wear down and need replacement we use 100% genuine rubber soles which can last for many years.
Moccasin Stitched Construction
This Construction is the only true and genuine way a Moccasin can be made, the upper material of the shoe is wrapped completely around to form the Vamp, when stitched this forms a type of Hammock the soles is then either Cemented or stitched to the sole, this provides a very comfortable and flexible product, unfortunately Moccasins by nature do not fair well in persistent wet conditions and discretion should be used, if water should penetrate your Moccasins you should always let them dry naturally.
So what Construction is best and what should I choose?
Tradition and Traditional shoemakers will lead you to believe that Goodyear Welted Construction is the best and superior to other constructions, well considering most of their higher priced products are made this way, who wouldn’t.
This simply isn’t true and there is no evidence to support this, don’t take our word for it, Go on-line and look for yourself, one construction will not last longer than another, both Goodyear and Blake Stitch construction is repairable, neither will the construction make the sole last longer, what makes a shoe or boot last is quality components and materials that’s what makes one product last longer than another.
What we offer at John White is a mixture of all construction methods without the tradition fed price tag, all our products are made with very high quality materials and are made to exceedingly high standards, what ever product you choose from our ranges you can guarantee it has had the very same standards applied to it however constructed.