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Lara Blevi

Nationality: South-African
Course: Shoe Making
Program: One-Year Atelier Course
Period: Sept 5, 2016-April 25, 2017

After Studying a BA degree in Fashion Design in South Africa, Lara decided that she would love to study further and focus on a specific direction in the fashion industry. During her studies, she followed an internship at a company where she was taught how to make and design handbags out of leather and exotic leather skins.

She knew instantly that she would love to study further and learn more about shoes and decided to come to Firenze, Italy, the most famous city to learn more of leather art and shoes! She found Accademia Riaci and knew that the shoe making course that they had to offer was exactly was she was looking for.

Here she wishes to learn the highest level of shoe making techniques and to be able to follow her dream to become a designer with the knowledge of not only fashion, but also the art of shoe and handbag design.




Sep. 23, 2016 | Posted in Reports, Shoemaking , | Tags:, Reporter: Lara Blevi | Course: Shoemaking

Shoe Making 2-One Year Course 2016

Week 2

After mastering the skills of making the patterns for the upper parts of the Décolleté and the Décolleté Rovesciato,(inverted), we finally got to work with leather!

On Tuesday we travelled to Alpel with the tram, the leather shop recommended by Riaci. There was so much leather to choose from, but we were clearly said not to be distracted by the colors, but to focus on the quality of the leather.

During the course of the week, we were introduced to how to work with the leather and completed two upper parts out of leather. My two designs were made out of cherry red leather and black leather.

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Prof Angelo is explaining to us how to mold the point of the shoe by taking back the material piece by piece and hammering it down to the shoe last.

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Cutting out the leather is a whole process of knowing the direction of the leather as well as the strong parts and ruined parts of the leather.

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My first upper sample out of leather for the Décolleté shoe with some of the tools that I used to create it. Here you can see my beautiful cherry red leather as well as the mock up.

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Here, Angelo explains how to reinforce the shoe in between the lining and the upper to make the shoe stronger. We were all also giving our own reinforcement materials to use during the course

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Before sewing the lining to the upper leather, it is very important to secure the two pieces together by hand sewing the notches together before sewing it with the machine.

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Here is my Décolleté Rovesciato out of back leather, hammered to the shoe last to check if it fits. After this, you would start to prepare the sole of the shoe.

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On Thursday it rained for the first time since I have been in Florence. It was a great feeling.

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Angelo showing us all the correct way to fit together the upper and the lining. This is quite a difficult process and needs a lot of focus.

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On Tuesday I also visited the Gucci Museum. It was so beautiful and inspiring. Here are some outfits that were displayed in the museum. Afterwards you can go for a coffee at the Gucci Café and receive Gucci shaped sugar cubes!

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On Thursday evening we celebrated one of my friends’ birthday. It was such a beautiful night and it was full moon.



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