How a brogue gets that way.

Well, it’s been a large week for me folks. Bologna ‘Lineapelle’ feels like only yesterday … but this past seven days at the workrooms in Southern Italy has been excellent with lots of shoe making going on! (Many late nights – so alas very little brainpower for blogging).

I’m leaving for home on the weekend with a swag of samples to use for press and publicity for the coming Summer range, and the very first set of Winter 2012 prototypes.

I’ve included a ‘brogue’ story for Winter … so thought I’d include a few photos of how a brogue hole punch pattern is created, let’s just call it BROGUEING 101. Even after seeing it many times I still get excited about the hand punching process. (I realize this might be just me!)

(I took these on my iphone – so apologies for the poor quality).

step 1: Hammering the punch stamp with great precision.

Annie Abbott blog

Annie Abbott blog

step 2: The ‘flower’ on the toe is made from another stamp carefully positioned on the toe pattern piece.

Annie Abbott blog

The stamping is kept on track by making indentations along the border before the hammering begins.

Annie Abbott blog

step 3: Stitching the leather pattern pieces together creates the ‘stitching’ which is very much part of the brogue pattern – and also keeps the leather pattern pieces together. (I’m stating the obvious here I realize!)

Annie Abbott blog
And voila - All hail the Brogue!

Annie Abbott blog

Footnote: whilst we’re on the topic of ‘brogues’ … I feel it is my duty to clear up a bit of confusion on the matter of the ‘brogue’ terminology. The term ‘brogue’ or ‘brogueing’ relates to a technique or treatment involving hole punching and stitching (as shown above). It is most commonly found on flat lace-up shoes however is not limited only to them (as my brogue Chelsea boot above demonstrates!) Many people (and I mean like everyone I know) call any type of lace-up a ‘brogue’ when in fact often they do not have any punching at all – and therefore, unfortunately – no brogue my friend!

If you are determined to give a lace-up a fancy name though, the 2 that I know of and believe are most commonly used relate to the way the laced section functions. A ‘derby’ lace-up has 2 pieces (like 2 ‘flaps’!!) sewn onto each side of the main ‘upper’ section that allow for much flexibility in terms of the width and instep of the wearer’s feet. An ‘oxford’ lace-up shoe refers to a style of lace-up that does not have these two side peices. It gives a very clean and sleek look – but a bit more work to step into for those with high arches!

This below style is not a brogue. (Although I hope you won’t hold that against it.) It is in fact an "oxford lace-up" and it’s part of the summer range (available in September).

Annie Abbott blog

OK, Ding Ding. Schools out!

FYI - I attempted some iphone videos of a few other processes this week …. Let’s just see how I go with the download. Stay tuned!


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