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Behind León: The Craft Of Inkerman

Two summers ago, Inkerman sent a photographer to investigate the handmade process that makes our product the quality it is. What follows is a preview of the Boyton shoemaking process.

Inkerman sources its leather from one of three U.S. based tanneries. The supple leather is placed against aluminum templates designed by the master shoe designer. Every other cut the hooked-blade cutting implement is sharpened.  

All Inkerman shoes feature our supple inner leather linings; the linings are cut using the same process, shown above, which forms the “upper” of the shoe.  

  In this image, the foxing of the brogues that compose the upper of the Boyton shoe are individually cut using a dye-press. The press, a modified sewing machine with a counterweight and a hand-wheel, precisely shapes the leather.     In order to achieve the flared foxed eyelets characteristic of a brogues shoe, the punched leather is folded against itself, creating a raised border of dimpled leather.     Here the finished brogues fabric is sewn to the vamps and quarters of shoe, producing the “upper” of the shoe.     With the upper complete, the fabric is placed around a last, or foot template, to have the leather shaped to the dimensions of the sole it will be matched to.     The completed upper of the shoe is joined with its natural rubber sole; the two are bonded with a contact-binding adhesive.   The finished product!