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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. 29, 2016 | Posted in Reports, Shoemaking , | Tags:, Reporter: Lara Blevi | Course: Shoemaking

Shoe Making 3-One Year Course 2016

This week was a very exciting and eventful week. On Monday morning we started right away with our patterns for the Décolleté Chanel shoe. This shoe is open at the heel and fastened with a small buckle. We were taught how to draft our preferred shape for the shoe and also the two different ways in which the pattern can be made.

After the pattern was completed, we were able to make a mock up of the upper shoe. This helps you to see if the final shape of the shoe is what you wanted and fix any errors in your pattern.

After class on Tuesday I went to visit the Basilica di San Lorenzo, the parish church of the Medici family, right behind Accademia Riaci. It was an indescribable feeling to enter the church and to be surrounded by such beautiful art and impressive architecture by artists like Donatello, Michelangelo and many more.

On Wednesday four of us excitedly travelled to Milan to visit the Lineapelle show, a massive expo of leather from all over the world.
We spent the whole day there walking through all the fascinating leather stands and also saw very interesting leather accessories. I never imagined how many different things are needed and can be used to made leather products.

After the show we headed to the center of Milan to experience the impressive Duomo and then had some very good Pizza and wine before we traveled back to Florence with the train.

By Thursday we completed the upper for the Décolleté Chanel with the lining and on Friday we went on a very special art visit in to the private Church of saints Filippo and Jacoba. This was a very special visit, as this church is not open to the public.

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Masami very focused while she is drafting the shape of her shoe on the shoe last.

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Here Tina is cutting out the mock up for her shoe. This is the material that we use to test the pattern before we cut it out of leather.

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Sewing up the strap of the Décolleté Chanel shoe is very complex as the machine cannot stitch all the way to the buckle, and a special method is used to stitch as close as possible to the buckle.

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Bernardo is showing us the correct way to mount the upper for the Chanel shoe.

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Here is my completed mounted upper mock up for my Chanel shoe.

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The impressive artchitecture and art decorated walls of the inside of the Basilica di San Lorenzo.

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Tina and Joanne at the Lineapelle show discussing over a pair of prada leather shoes.

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It is amazing to learn and see all the different types of leather available to make beautiful leaher products as well as al the different colors.

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Here I am stading next to the remarkable Duomo of Milan with its dramatically decurated and sculped walls.

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Cutting away the excess lining after stitching the lining and the upper leather together. Here you will leave a small part of extra lining on the inside of the shoe which will help you with the mounting of the shoe.

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On Friday I visited the Galileo Museum. This was a spectacular exhibition where you learn about the scientific history of Florence . The desplays are very interesting and you also get to download a free app for the museum that guids you through the museum with information.

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Standing in the private Church of saints Filippo and Jacoba for our art visit on Friday.



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At Accademia Riaci, we are recruiting Course Reporters from our students. The students who are chosen to become Course Reporters are given 10 % of the tuition as their scholarship fee.
The Reporters who have submitted excellent reports will have his or her profile posted on our school website for the next 5 years as an alumnae and will be able to connect with their business chancesafter their graduation.

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