"Front-laced one-piece shoe (late 14th-century). There are no reinforcement stitches around the lace holes. Although the quarters and vamp are one continuous piece of leather, the quarters retain the high profile at the heel..." (Grew and de Neergaard, fig. 99, p. 65).

"Openwork decorations... Vamp fragments from side-laced ankle-shoes or boots... probably late 14th/early 15th-century..." (Grew and de Neergaard, fig. 99, p. 65). The close-up holes are about 1/4"x1/4". Other designs include simple circles, and fancier triangles and scalloped diamonds with interspersed X shapes.

Shoes with a Beekeeping Theme

Goal: Create shoes for a 14th-century lady beekeeper.


  1. Research desired pattern.
  2. Make pattern for sole: trace foot onto light cardboard.
  3. Make pattern for upper: enclose socked foot in duct tape; mark opening and sole; cut on side seam to release foot; cut away sole and above opening; snip as needed to allow flattening; trace spread taped sock onto light cardboard.
  4. Trace patterns onto leather with a scratch awl and cut pieces out with a sharp knife.
  5. Punch and stamp uppers to make openwork honeycomb pattern and random bee decoration.
  6. Stitch side seam using edge-to-edge alignment, keeping the needle within the thickness of the leather at the seam itself, and entering and exiting through the flesh side of the leather.
  7. Stitch sole to upper with needle going through the flesh side of the sole and out through its edge, then through the hair side of the leather and back through the flesh side. (Both pieces are worked inside out.)
  8. Soak completely sewn shoe in water for about ten minues, then turn it right-side out.
  9. Add topband of thin, soft leather via binding stitch.
  10. Punch holes and add a short lace for fastening.

Notes on the above process

Thoughts and observations for the next project

Acknowledgements, resources, and references

This documentation was created for the Æthelmearc Kingdom Arts & Sciences Championship, Oct. 28, 2017, A.S. 52, in the Shire of Nithgaard, by Robert of Ferness. More information can be found at ShoesByRobert.com for this pair and others.