Mar 20, 2013

Now You Can Make Midsole By Yourself And Say Goodbye to Your Supplier

Today I decided to share with you one of my "gold" tutorials: how to do mid-sole by yourself. I mean gold in sense that it helped me a lot in the beginning of my way as an independent shoe designer.  As it usually happens at the beginning ,no suppliers want to work with you, because you don't order big quantities. So to make my dream come true (make  my own shoes) I had to come up with a technique of manufacturing mid-soles in home, by myself, as they call it DIY.
I bought a shankboard for mid-sole and texon board (you can find it in some store for bags and shoes suppliers) and experimented with it.

Texon board

Instinctively, I knew that these shankboard may have the same leather's qualities of conserving the form after being in the water.  I was right. It worked in exactly as I thought.
Only thing remained to do is, to put a metal shank between these  two types of cardboards and I will get absolutely the same midsole as midsole made in the factory.  I remember the filling! I was so happy  and satisfied.  At that moment, I realized once again that we can do everything with our hands and don't need to depend on anybody.
Then and now when I need to check some new last, It helps to keep my work flow and just focus on making shoes. So, I now it will help you too, my dear readers. Do it yourself, be independent in your craft.

First of all make a mid-sole pattern of your last. Then cut off the back part ,till the point where the mid-sole comes over the curve of bottom of the last.

Cut this part form shankboard piece and the whole mid-sole pattern cut from texon board.  Wet both cardboards and attach it to the last with the nails. After it dries, cut off the left surplus of texon mid-sole. Curve the shank with a hammer.  In this video I  used short shank (7 cm), but for heels it is better to use a longer shank (8 cm). To curve a long shank you can heat it up. I attach the shank in the distance of 3 cm from the edge of the last, because at that distance it will be easier to screw the bolt attaching the heel.

Glue this three details : texon midsole, shank and shankboard together. To attach it better, use the harmer. After you finish, cut the surplus of the shankboard and grind the edge with sandpaper. That is it, you done! As you see it is not that difficult to do, but the result is phenomenal, you made your own factory made like midsole. Sorry, if I seem to excited about this one, but I actually am, because it saves me a lot of trouble and a lot of time.

Have a good day and never give up!

If this post was useful for you and you think you can integrate it in to your work, share this post to fallow shoemaker and post comment bellow " Yes, I can!".


  1. Omg driving home this was exactly what I was trying to figure out on my own. What's the grey board called? Shankboard? I can buy texon but the shoe supply store I go to is very cluttered and not anyone to help really so its hard to find something if you don't already know exactly what you want

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  5. Thanks for this excellent bit of information. Sveta Kletina you rock!!

  6. Sveta, u r genius! Just on ques, what type of shoes do not need shank? Is it must to have it in mid-sole?

  7. No access to the video any more :(((

    1. Full lesson at


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