Production Journal

The formal Derby






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The formal derby is a versatile style and have lived throught the 20th centory in many configurations. And still do. Florsheims were one of the great suppliers of blutchers and derbys and old NOS pairs found on Ebay are still diamonds for collectors. Ususally these were goodyear welted with 360 welt. These gave the impression of heavy sole and robus construction. This specific pair were however made for more formal setting with clean cut.

Black box calf

The leather used is a black box calf from the Ilcea tannery, located in Tuscany Italy. This full grain leather provide suptle and long lasting wear and excellent shine.

The customer, having standard width but prefers a narrow fit, we recommended the Hawk last for perfect fit.With its rounded toe and somewhat longer shape, it creates a very subtle creation together with the rough exterior of the derby.

The first stage of the lasting is to make the innersole and attach it to the last. One very important observation is that we use channeling of the inner sole. It is common among goodyear welted shoes to use glued canvas gemming to sew the welt to the inner sole. While this would save time, we value the craftmanship to the all leather and classical manufacturing tecnique. The shoe snob did a very good article on the matter, and while his conclusion is that its not necassery any perks to a channeled lip compared to the gemming we will continue to use this method, as to use one solid leather piece insted of glued canvas. 

Since leather is a living material, seeking perfection requires a pair of human hands and eyes to tighten the leather around the last. The individual characteristics of the leather is streched as moulded to the last. While machine lasting is ususally sufficent for most, we do not want to use this method.

The welt is now finaly sewn into place by hand using the inner sole lip.

The bottom work is done and with additional work the 360 welt is assembled onto the upper, shank installed and cork filed. Bellow is the final result

The bottom sole is attached to the base and the finishing of the bottom design and debossing. The welt is marked for aliognment of the seam. Onces the sole is glued to the base the sole cut to its ideal shape and it is sown to the welt by hand. 

Usually we use a very modest stiches per inch (SPI) of 8-10. but we really tighten the welt for this pair with very precise and tight stiching. Necassery no, SPI above 10 is usually not advantegous, but its again the value of  craftmanship and quality.

The shoe then undergoes finishing work, and coloring of the sole The sole edge is dyed and ironed.

After some elbow grease the shoe is finalized and the images below can speak for themselfs. A classical derby with a formal setting.

For those who wish to purchase a pair, you can Contact us directly and we can set you up or help to configure a MTO. We are working on creating an online Configuration tool for those who wish to modify according to your needs.

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