While factory shoemakers in America remain in a constant state of relevance (or lack thereof in my book) in the shoe industry, shoe repairmen in the US are going to the next level of greatness as they strive to offer recraft services that are better than our local shoemakers (factory makers). Steve Doudaklian, of Bedo’s Leatherworks, proves that here as he hand-welts a pair of spade soles onto a brand new pair of Vass shoes.
The customer had just purchased these but wanted to spice them up with that 1930/40’s look of the Spade Sole. So as you can see from the pictures and the video, Steve ripped off that sole and welt and handcrafted a new one for the customer, seriously upgrading the pair, at least in look. And this is some serious work done. Handwelting a new welt is not offered by many as it takes a level of skill that many shoe repairmen are not trained. It’s impressive to say the least, knowing that if you have a pair of bespoke shoes that you can get them done locally in the US, if need be. Steve does not hand-stitch the sole as a bespoke shoe would be, but that is not a make or break feature in my book.
What he did for this pair of shoes is nothing shy of great and it’s great to see that Cobblers in the US are honing their skills to really offer a service unmatched by many.
For this exact service Bedo’s charges $640. Before your mouth drops, realize that it is a lot of handwork done and comes with those super solid toe taps. I presume a regular sole (as opposed to spade) might cost less as there should be less handwork involved (although I could be wrong).
Next time you need some shoe work, look to Bedo’s Leatherworks. I am sure they offer a mail-in order service (Steve just confirmed they do!).
Check out there YouTube video on the making of this HERE