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Shoemaker and Repairer  What They Do

Just the Facts

Insider Info

dotMany a worn shoe has been fixed by a shoe repairer. To make a shoe, they test the texture, color and strength of the leather. After finding the right piece of calf skin, the shoemaker places and traces a pattern, cuts the outline and sews the pieces together.

dotOrthopedic and therapeutic shoemakers create or modify footwear according to a doctor's prescription. They may attach insoles or shoe uppers, or apply heels and outsoles. People with foot problems may also need shoemakers to insert heel pads or lifts.

The most common type of shoe repair involves replacing soles and heels. Repairers remove the old sole and heel with a knife or pliers. They attach new soles and heels to the shoe either by stitching them in place or by using cement or nails.

dotShoemakers and repairers who work in large manufacturing establishments generally work a regular 40-hour week. Many work in small shops. For those who own repair shops, long hours are common. "The hours can be long," says Earl Duncan, a shoe repairer in Florida.

At a Glance

Craft footwear -- and replace soles and heels

  • Did you know a person takes 8,000 steps a day?
  • Salaries can be modest, unless you offer other services on the side
  • Six months to two years of on-the-job training can be necessary