Welcome to Simple Shoemaking

I’m Sharon Raymond and I’ve been making shoes for twenty years, and teaching others how to make them for twelve. Here you’ll find my tutorials, resources and new blog articles all about ecological shoemaking for you and your family.


Simple Shoemaking E-Books​

This e-book has directions and patterns for making derby tie shoes and boots and flat shoes, using either the “stitch-down” or the “stitch-in” technique. 

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This book offers directions and patterns for making earth-friendly minimalist shoes. They are based on moccasin design, but the upper patterns are for making derby tie shoes, one-piece flats and “cinch-top” casual shoes.


This book has directions and patterns for making seven styles of strap sandals, including continuous strap sandals.

Recent Blog Articles

Sharon Raymond

Perfect fit!

It’s a peak moment when I slip a last into a mock-up I have made of a new shoe style – and it fits! Now I know that my stitch holes are in the correct place on both the sole and the upper. For this mock-up I am using a gift bag material – it

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Sharon Raymond

My favorite “common folk” shoes

Since I prefer to wear “common folk” shoes, I love these shoes of mine. Just a little hand-stitching says a lot! These flats were made using patterns from my book on making stitch-downs – and stitch-ins – How to make simple ecological shoes for women.

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Sharon Raymond

Make shoes from vegetable-tanned leather   I invite you to check out the above url for information on what the chrome-tanned leather industry has done to the Ganges River in India, and consequently, the people. In the U.S. and European countries,  chrome-tanned leather tanneries cannot dump their chemicals and dies into waterways, they must all be contained within the

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Sharon Raymond

Make a simple wallet from scrap leather as a gift – or for yourself!

I focus as much on creating little kits using up my mountain of shoemaking scraps as I do making shoes these days. I thought some of you might like to make this wallet as a holiday gift. I got the pattern from I love that it has a big space for embellishing the wallet

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Sharon Raymond

Sandal/shoe from the 1970’s

This shoe pattern has been available under the “Resources” category for a while, and I thought it would be a good idea to give it some exposure as a blog post. Please send a photo if you make a pair! I saw this “sandoe” or whatever compound word you can think of (Ruth Emily Davey

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Sharon Raymond

I got an order for “crabs” – and I delivered!

When my niece had her first child, I made a pair of “first footsteps” toddler shoes with a boat appliqued on them. When her second child was born, she wanted to continue with the nautical theme and asked for a pair of shoes with crabs on them. Well, that took some trial and error, some

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About Simple Shoemaking

Twenty-five years ago I was living with my husband and daughter in a commune in the UK, where hand-made shoes were on the feet of gardeners, potters and other residents. Realizing that it was possible to make footwear was the moment my life transformed.

All of my footwear is made ecologically, which means that I avoid toxic shoe cements, new petroleum-based soling and new chrome-tanned leather.

I encourage the use of leather remnants from upholstery shops or leather items from thrift stores. Felted old wool coats are a great shoemaking material too.

I want to help other people become shoemakers “for fun or profit” by offering e-books, resources, and videos.


I  call my new shoemaking process “The World’s Simplest Custom Shoemaking Technique”, even though that may be an exaggeration – it’s not by much!

To learn more about my journey, my processes, and why I only make ecological footwear – please listen to my recent podcast with Dandelion Branding.