Glossary of Terms

Blake stitch

The process of attaching the outsole to the midsole by stitching them directly together.

Boat shoe

Boat shoe: A moccasin with a siped rubber sole. Traditionally made by hand sewing ‘mulled’ or wet leather around a last to form a shoe.

Derby

A lace up shoe where the facings lie over the vamp. Is more casual than an Oxford and some say that they should never be worn with a suit.

Handsewing

The process of sewing the ‘plug’ or ‘vamp’ in to a boat shoe or loafer. This is done, with the upper tacked on to the last, by hand stitchers who are undoubtedly the most skilled craftsmen in our workshops.

Last

This is the wooden mould that is used to shape the upper into a foot shaped shoe (Lasting). Billy Ruffian lasts are all of Traditional English shapes.

Latigo Lace

Traditional rawhide lace that is used in a boat shoe. Are extremely strong and resilient.

Midsole

The layer of leather that lies between the outsole and the foot. The lasted upper is attached to the midsole.

Moccasin

A shoe where the upper leather wraps all the way around the foot.

Outsole

This is the piece of leather or rubber that the shoe sits on. It is attached to the midsole either with a welt (welted shoe) or by directly stitching to the midsole (Blake stitch)

Oxford

A lace up shoe where the facings lie under the vamp. Considered as the most formal shoe pattern.

Siped rubber sole

The rubber outsole that we use on our boatshoes. The siping are the razor cuts that have been made into the bottom of the sole to mimic the pattern on a dogs’ footpad and help it to grip on a wet surface.

Upper

This is the various pieces of leather that make up the shoe, sewn together and ready for ‘lasting’.

Vamp

The piece of leather that wraps over the toe and instep of the foot.

Welted

The process whereby the sole is attached to the midsole using a strip of leather or welt. This is first sewn around the edge of the midsole and then to the outsole.