I am delighted by all the enthusiastic comments from you all about my forays into sandal making. It's really encouraging and fun to hear from you. Thank you!
First, to answer Lynda's question here's what you do on the bottom of a sandal-
Fold and glue the ends under:
Then skive or taper them down until they are fairly flat.
Then glue on the sole. The cement alone will probably not be enough to hold the strap ends in place long-term, but I don't have nails yet.
I don't want to get into the technical aspects too much- I could go on and on and I don't want to bore you, but please do let me know if you have any questions about techniques or tools. I was delayed on my sandalmaking this past week because I didn't really have a space to work. So I spent one day cleaning a junky storage room in our studio and now I have a workroom, complete with a 9 foot table Laura scored for me at the Berea College surplus auction for $2.50.
Moving on to finished work- my first pair of sandals is done!
I've worn them quite a bit- around the house, then out at Laura's- on the gravel drive, in the creek and meadow. They've held up really well, though I need to finish the edges better. One problem- they gave me a blister on my heel. Then, when the straps stretched a bit and they didn't chafe, they were too long and the sandal flopped around on my foot. I guess that's my lesson for using a self-designed pattern for my first sandal. I realize it's silly to be bummed about my FIRST pair not being just-right, but I don't think I will be wearing these all the time.
But clever sandalmakers have solved the strap problem by using one continous strap that can be tightened and adjusted. I bought Sharon Raymond's patterns for sandals and they are excellent. I am following her Gladiator Sandal pattern to a "T" and it's going swimmingly.
To test for fit this time, I made a cardboard and seam binding ribbon mock-up:
And now I am working with leather. I have one sandal almost finished. I am delighted with this pattern. The fit is supremely comfortable and I like the way the sandal looks. I am hoping to have some time to work tomorrow, I'll keep you posted on my sandal progress.