For the last 4 years, Steven and Dominic - two craftsmen with over 60 years of experience with London’s west end bookmakers - have been teaching Lastmaking courses in the heart of Eastbourne. The design of the course is to be an introduction into the craft over a 4-day period with each participant producing their own pair of wooden shoe lasts that they take home at the end of the course. Lastmaking is highly skilled and physically demanding. Help will be given from the tutor where necessary. However, in this time available, it is not possible to train participants to become commercial last makers which takes a number of year of concentrated study.
Our courses will cover:
An introduction to Lastmaking tools and their use including the last makers vice.
Taking measures. Drawing the outline of the foot and the detail needed.
Interpreting the measurements in to a wooden shoe last. This will include pitch, toe spring, back curve and toe shape.
At the end of the course each participant will take home a pair of bespoke wooden shoe lasts.
There will be an opportunity to purchase a set of tools and lastmaking vices.
Steven trained at John Lobb Ltd St. James' Street as a Lastmaker and went on to work for 28 years at Lobb, traveling extensively in the USA for 21 years, measuring clients, making their lasts and fitting the bespoke orders. Overseeing all aspects of the process of shoemaking for quality control.
He established his own bespoke shoemaking business and he set up
Crispinians Ltd in 2012 that provides services to shoe companies and individuals including bespoke Lastmaking, Tree making for shoes and boots.
Dominic has worked in the bespoke shoe trade for over 35 years. He originally trained as an orthopaedic shoemaker with James Taylor & Son. At the same time he taught Design and pattern making on the BA course at Cordwainers college. He has his own workshop, worked in the ladies fashion industry and for 15 years taught on the MA on footwear design at the Royal College of Art.
The past 10 years he has been Lastmaking and shoemaking at G.J. Cleverly in London. Dominic now has his own London based bespoke business.