Shoemaking Classes

All classes are taught at

Haw Creek Commons in


Have a look at the steps involved in shoemaking class.

About Shoemaking Class

Asheville Shoemaking classes are a four day dive into traditional tool use and proper technique for crafting hand stitched, custom leather shoes.

Class sizes are kept small for optimal engagement. Each day is 8 hrs, with some additional sewing homework on day three.

Day One

Students are walked through the 60 step pattern making process

This process includes tracing and casting using paper, card stock and duct tape to mold the curves and angles precisely.

Next design the Upper details and finally transfer the sole pattern to the soling leather.

Day Two

Transfer the Upper pattern onto the Bison leather

Choose the leather color, transfer patterns and begin the cutting and skiving preparation work.

Day Three

Prepare the foot bed and sew-a-plenty

Using a French edger cut the groove around the perimeter of the top of soles before drilling stitch holes, then (you guessed it) start stitching.

Day Four

Attach the sole and adore the fruit of your labor!!!

Complete the final details of flap and tab attachment, whip stitching and out sole gluing, depending on specific shoe style you’ve chosen.

The result is a custom Hide-to-Shoe project for each student!

Choose Your Class

Low elegant pair of traditional scandinavian turnshoes with button & flap

10th Century Scandinavian Turnshoe

with Recycled Rubber Soles

The Scandinavian Turnshoe is a 10th century style shoe with a thin leather sole similar to a moccasin. I often refer to this style as “hiking slippers” due to their excellent ability to allow you to feel the ground beneath your feet and their great traction on rocks.

This shoe style is made inside out and then turned right-side-out so that the stitching ends up on the inside. The upper can be made in many styles such as the traditional flap and button, a more modern lace up style, or a no-flap slipper. The sole is a mixture of recycled rubber powder and rubber cement which is pasted on the shoe in whatever thickness you desire. This allows you to indefinitely add more rubber as the old rubber wears away. The upper is made of rugged Bison leather and if taken care of can last a lifetime.

The class is four 8 hour days, with sewing home work / evening work on the 3rd day.

Handmade men's dress loafers in black & chocolate with lacing and thick soles

Internal Stitchdown shoe

with Vibram Soles

The internal stitch down is a more modern style of shoe that uses the same one piece upper and flap construction as in my Turn Shoe class but attaches to a commercial Vibram brand sole. This sole style gives you about a 3/4″ buffer between your foot and the ground which can be helpful in the winter months when the ground is colder. Sole styles can be chosen for traction on terrain, cushioning on cement, or even straight leather for use on the dance floor. The upper is made from rugged Bison leather and could last a lifetime if properly cared for. 4 leather colors to choose from.

The class is four 9 hour days with sewing home work / evening work on the 3rd day.

This class uses some power tools.

Leather Choices

Upper leather is 9oz. American Bison, with four colors to choose from:

Detail photo of black leather


Classic black

Detail photo of black leather


Deep rose wood toned

Detail photo of black leather


Warm sun-kissed brown

Detail photo of black leather


Silky soft coffee-esque

“Michael is a wonderfully patient teacher. He took us through a complicated procedure step by step and we all ended up with beautiful shoes! He explained and demonstrated each new tool and technique until we all understood and could do it on our own. Great class!”

Merit Scotford

Whip Stitching Instructional Video

Register Now

The time for a sabbatical has come, during which Asheville Shoemaking will be working on exciting new designs and inspiration for future shoe classes and offerings.

I am teaching at the John C. Campbell Folk School from March 31st – April 5th. Come join me there if you can.