This weekend is the Grand Opening of Open Studio at the Chicago School of Shoemaking. Anyone who has completed a class at the Chicago School of Shoemaking is qualified to register. On Saturday, we are hosting open studio from 10-5. On Sunday, we are hosting from 10-2. Only 12 student spaces for either day. Register for the day, come when you like and leave when you like. You will have the use of tools and space plus access to materials and hardware for purchase. After a short orientation, you can work independently in our workshops. We are delighted to offer this possibility to our cobblers in training and leather work students.
If you have a coupon or card with one hour of credit on it, save it for the regular schedule of Open Studio (coming soon).
We are finalizing a few moccasin designs for our new Footwear Class: Moccasins I. You’ll get to choose from an array of colorful suedes for the body of the Moc–and contrasting colors and hardware for the trim and decorations. These are designed for indoor use, but a thin outsole will be an option to add to your project. We’ve had a few students make test pairs and they are delighted with how comfy they are. The 5 hr class will allow sufficient time to do some fun decorating.
We will schedule dates for this class upon request. Prerequisite: Beginning Shoemaking and Patternmaking.
Many styles of sandals will be available to customize for yourself during this class. A variety of soling and strap designs will be explored and students will create a pair of sandals with a wide selection of hardware and leathers. You will learn how to create and install straps, attach buckles or other closures and decorate with the findings and hardware available. You’ll be able to wear your sandals home after class. Check out our gallery of photos on facebook. Only 6 students per class.
Join us at the 2013 Creative Chicago Expo this weekend!
The Creative Chicago Expo connects Chicago’s creative community with resources they need to thrive. Through keynotes, workshops, vendors and more, get professional development expertise from top local and national providers! This event is for creative individuals and organizations in design, culinary, fashion, film, music, dance, theater, literary, and visual arts–and of course, shoemaking and leather working!
Searched forever to find someone who could sew leather in Chicago so I could make my mom an overnight bag from a hide I got from work. Sara, the woman behind Chicago School of Shoemaking, not only knows how to sew leather but you can take a class and learn how to be a true designer and make clutches, shoes, earings, etc etc! SO MUCH FUN!!! I didn’t know what to expect but I loved it. 5 hours on a Saturday with her and we had a beautiful finished bag.
Prerequisite: Exploring Leather Work, or advanced leather skills.
This is a series of classes that run for 6 weeks. We meet 2 hrs each week from 7-9pm.
I’m travelling to England in August to get more training in traditional leatherworking skills. I expect to teach these techniques to the more advanced leather working students.
We’ll be focusing on finer skills, hand stitching and lacing, more knowledge and experience with vegetable tanned leather and formation and construction of interesting handles as well as zipper installation. Training and use of the industrial sewing machine on site as well as elaborate edging techniques make this class series a good choice for the more serious leather worker. There will be many opportunities for your own designs to be incorporated into class projects. All materials, hardware and use of tools are included.
Discover and learn the art of patternmaking for custom made shoes. Create patterns for new styles and design shoes on paper, creating patterns for your designs that will fit you and others you know. Understanding the structure of a shoe and the variety of details that can be modified are the goals. Sizing for all shapes and sizes of feet included. Class focus is on patternmaking. No actual shoes will be made during class. Includes all materials and use of tools on site. (Beginning Shoemaking is a prerequisite.)
Classes scheduled upon request
For a limited time, a gift Certificate from us is discounted 20% at purchase. This is a good way to make your dollars go further to promote learning and skill building at the School. We wish you the Very Best this season! And if you’re in town next week, visit us at the One of a Kind Show at the Merchandise Mart downtown. Booth 7117 ( link is for comp tickets) We are displaying student projects and selling gift certificates as well as selling products that you could have made yourself in our Leather Work Classes. Come See us!!!
Exploring Leather Work is a series of classes that run for 6 weeks. We meet 2 hrs each week from 7-9pm.
This hands-on fundamentals course is for people who want to learn how to make items and projects out of a variety of weights and types of leather. Whether you have done some leather work on your own, have already attended a workshop at the school or have never worked with leather before, this is the best class to refine your skills and move forward to more intricate projects and advanced classes.
In 6 weeks we will cover all the basic information students need to complete 5 different projects. We explore many aspects of working with leather: cutting, gluing, shaping, dyeing, hardware, and finishing techniques. Patterns and projects are provided as well as many choices of leather types and colors. You will also have time and space to work on independent projects of your own designs as the class progresses. All materials, hardware and use of tools are included.
Feel free to download this pdf of the class syllabus.Exploring Leather Work Class Syllabus 2013