Here’s a trick I learned from my partner. She’s interested in doing a career transition. Some of the advice she read suggested that in addition to doing the new thing, you can also learn quite a bit, by, wait for it… reading. I know, who’d of thought. So I recently came across this series of books by Adriana Trigiani. The first, Very Valentine has been out for a couple of years. Apparently it’s a novel about a family with a shoemaking business. I’m guessing readers will have to wade through some family drama, sex and intrigue on their way to shoe-making gems, but since we can’t be cutting leather on the bus or plane, this might be a good way to get some background knowledge. If anyone’s read it, let me know.

Lasts are the DNA of the shoe. You can do all sorts of things to the skin, and you can dress it up however you want, but noting will have more of an impact on your shoe design than the last. So if you want to make your own, it’s great to have guidance. Believe me, I’ve tried doing it on my own and it’s a schlog. But you may have better luck.

I recently heard about the Lastmaking School up in Snohomish, WA. If you are willing to take a trip to a beautiful part of the country, they have a few classes (starting at $595) from Beginning Lastmaking to Advanced, and some other interesting offerings. They have a full list of classes here.

Having struggled so mightily with last making myself, I can certainly see the value in getting taught by folks who seem to know what they are doing.

If anyone has had experience taking a class with them, let me know.

I’m traveling this week, so shoe making is out. I’ve been using the time to create some typefaces for the new art pieces I’m doing. This one won’t fit in the piece, but I couldn’t resist utilizing this Ikea for a typeface. I’m learning that angled signs actually have a nice effect.

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