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

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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Sharon Raymond

My old favorite sneakers

This pair of sneakers demonstrates why I love making leather shoes – from  earth-friendly sources, of course (thrifted leather items, scraps from upholstery shops for example) – I have worn these sneakers through twenty years of zumba classes at the local fitness club, and about an equal amount of hikes on hilly country roads. Yes,

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Sharon Raymond

Carol from the Midwest is obsessed with shoemaking!

Imagine my shock when I checked my email a few days ago and saw this photo – with the caption “I made 15 pairs of shoes in 30 days!” Inspecting the photo, I see center-seam stitch-downs, side-seam moccasins, slip-on mules, ghillies, ballet flats, and many from “How to Make Ecological Moccashoes for All Sizes of

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Sharon Raymond

Tip for making stitch-down shoes over lasts

Hopefully you can see a last under this sole. When making stitch-down shoes over lasts, the sole needs to be 1/4″ bigger all around than the sole of the last so the upper can be cemented, then turned out onto that 1/4″ that is visible all around the sole of the last.  Then, the sole

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Sharon Raymond

New tutorial: How to make Moccashoes!

I could stop making other shoe styles and simply make moccashoes forever! They are so simple – which is the second place reason why I choose to make a certain style (after first place, which is – ecological). So these shoes are simple and ecological – if you make them from pre-used items, and use

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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.