AskDefine | Define shoemaker

Dictionary Definition

shoemaker n : a person who makes or repairs shoes [syn: cobbler]

User Contributed Dictionary



shoe + maker


  1. a person who makes shoes

Usage notes

A person who repairs shoes is a cobbler


a person who makes shoes

Extensive Definition

Shoemaking is a traditional handicraft profession, which has now been largely superseded by industrial manufacture of footwear.
Shoemakers or cordwainers (cobblers being, historically, those that repair shoes) may produce a range of footwear items, including shoes, boots, sandals, clogs and moccasins. Such items are generally made of leather, wood, rubber, plastic, jute or other plant material, and often consist of multiple parts for better durability of the sole, stitched to a leather upper.
Most shoemakers use a last—made traditionally of iron or wood, but now often of plastic—on which to form the shoe. Some lasts are straight, while curved lasts come in pairs: one for left shoes, the other for right shoes.
The shoemaking profession makes a number of appearances in popular culture, such as in stories about shoemaker's elves, and the proverb "The shoemaker's children are often shoeless". The patron saint of shoemakers is Saint Crispin.
Some types of ancient and traditionally-made shoes include:
  • Furs wrapped around feet, and sandals wrapped over them: used by Romans fighting in northern Europe.
  • Clogs: wooden shoes, often filled with straw to warm the feet.
  • Moccasins: simple shoes, often without the durability of joined shoes (although different types of leather have different wear characteristics).
The Society for Creative Anachronism offers some advice about making period shoes.
Current crafters may use used car tire tread as a cheap alternative to creating soles.
Chefs and cooks sometimes use the term "shoemaker" as an insult, implying that the chef in question has made his food as tough as shoe leather.

See also

External links

  • Series of videos on shoemaking
  1. Part 1
  2. Part 2
  3. Part 3
  4. Part 4
  5. Part 5
  6. Part 6
shoemaker in German: Schuhmacher
shoemaker in Estonian: Kingsepp
shoemaker in French: Cordonnier
shoemaker in Italian: Calzolaio
shoemaker in Hebrew: סנדלר
shoemaker in Hungarian: Cipész
shoemaker in Macedonian: Чевларство
shoemaker in Norwegian: Skomaker
shoemaker in Norwegian Nynorsk: Skomakar
shoemaker in Polish: Szewstwo
shoemaker in Portuguese: Sapateiro
shoemaker in Russian: Кожевенно-обувная промышленность
shoemaker in Sicilian: Scarparu
shoemaker in Slovak: Obuvníctvo
shoemaker in Serbian: Обућарство
shoemaker in Finnish: Suutari
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