Do You Know How Handmade Shoes Differ When It Comes To Blake Stitch & Goodyear Welt?

March 30, 2021

Do You Know How Handmade Shoes Differ When It Comes To Blake Stitch & Goodyear Welt?

Shoes aren’t just essentials that you wear everyday; they carry one’s personality if styled perfectly. And that applies to both, men and women, and in both scenarios, formal and casual. Regardless of how expensive and stylish the outfit you’re wearing is, if you don’t pay attention to what you put on your feet to complement it, your entire ensemble can look mismatched. That’s why shoes are considered an integral part of everyone’s wardrobe.

Talking about shoes, everyone knows there are several varieties available in the market – dress shoes, Wholecut Oxford shoes, Chukka boots, Jodhpurs, Chinos, there’s an endless range one can choose from. And what’s interesting to note is that today, shoe selection has caught the interest of men at an equal level as that of women.

Now when it comes to selecting the right shoes for men, there are several things you should consider, including the material, the stitching, and the color. Among other things, you should carefully look at a pair’s construction, which can often make the difference between the perfect pair and a lump of leather.

Though most reputed brands use the finest leather and the best craftsmen to create shoes that you can happily pay for, it’s important to still pay meticulous attention to how the upper part, insole, outsole, etc., have been crafted. But we agree, it can be difficult to know all of this if you’re unrelated to the field of shoe-making.

Thus, to help transform you into a conscious shoe buyer, through this article we’ll guide you to figure out the crucial aspects of two prominent shoe construction types – Blake Stitch and Goodyear Welt. We’ll focus on the details of each one and then highlight how they’re different from one another. Let’s get started. 

Blake Stitch

Blake stitching is amongst the primary mechanized techniques of shoemaking. It's a quick, simple, and cost-effective method to produce shoes, which utilizes a single stitch that goes through the upper, insole, and outsole.

Blake Stitching doesn't use a welt but instead a stitch that goes through the insole. This implies that the artisan should ideally use a machine because it's slightly challenging to perform this kind of work by hand. However, this is where the experience of a highly skilled craftsman can make a mark. There are quite a few shoe-makers around the world who are specially trained in the art of creating Blake Stitch entirely by hand. Naturally, when it’s such a coveted craft, it’s bound to be out of the world, won’t you agree?

Coming back to Blake Stitch, the absence of a welt in such shoes implies that they’re tighter, more elegant, and lightweight. And another major advantage of these shoes is that it’s quite simple to re-sole them if needed. What that basically means is that if the sole of your Blake Stitch shoes becomes damaged for some reason, you can get it replaced with an entirely new sole. Since the shoe doesn’t have any stitches on the exterior, the outsole’s body can be cut almost exactly in line with the upper to make an unnoticeable re-soling possible.

These slim styles are quite popular as Italian leather Men's Dress Shoes where they cater more to refined shapes and exemplary fitting. Blake Stitch shoes are extremely sleek and very durable. Moreover, there are a couple of high-end craftsmen that can produce them by hand, but as already mentioned, they can be built using machines too.

Pros

  • Blake Stitching is general more cost-friendly than Goodyear Welt.
  • Resoling is possible when the outsole gets damaged or worn out.
  • Blake's welting is superior when looking for a close-cut sole. 
  • There are no outside stitches that allow the whole body of the outsole cut extremely near the upper. 
  • It has very few layers which makes it much more flexible.

Cons

  • While Blake Stitch can be re-soled, it requires a particular tool which is costlier and tougher to use. 
  • Fewer layers make the shoe less waterproof. 

Bonus Info – How to Identify a Blake Stitched Shoe?

If you look at the stitching of a shoe carefully, you can easily differentiate a Blake Stitched Shoes from the others. The stitch for such a pair will be quite noticeable at the sole’s edge. It would also be visible on the inside, around the insole, but if the shoe has extra padding seeing it might become difficult.

Goodyear Welt

Goodyear Welt is another famous kind of shoe construction which is an intensive, laborious, and extremely sturdy way to produce high-quality Oxford shoes.

The major contrast here is a canvas rib beneath the insole with a strip of leather and glue around the edge of the sole. The craftsman fills the gap between the midsole and insole with cork, while the welt is stitched to the outsole and midsole with a rapid stitch.

This two-level sewing ensures these shoes are more water-resistant. Moreover, you can attach twofold (or even triple) outsoles to them to give them more height and durability, but of course, that would mean that they’d become less flexible and chunkier.

Pros

  • The two-level sewing makes resoling a Goodyear Welted shoes possible
  • Eliminating the old sole can be done easily by hand or machine as the welt makes for a support between the outsole and the insole.
  • The additional layers make the shoe more supportive and water-resistant.

Cons

  • Due to the extra labor and materials required, a Goodyear Welt shoe is expensive.
  • The additional layers that offer more structure come at the cost of flexibility.

 

Blake Stitching VS Goodyear Welt

Since both types of shoes differ on several fronts, it’s best to compare them based on such criteria.

Blake Stitched Vs Good Year Welted

Construction type: You should ideally opt for resoling only if your shoe is worn out, and that’s why, it’s important to buy shoes with durable construction. Blake Stitch shoes are better in this regard since unlike Goodyear Welt where a leather strip is simply attached to the upper, in Blake Stitch the upper part is stitched to the sole from within the shoe. This way, its longevity is guaranteed. 

Water-resistance: Whether you live in a cold region or your street is filled with last night’s downpour, one’s footwear needs to provide dryness to the feet in such situations. Goodyear welt shoes are truly water-resistant because of the stitches that are segregated by a leather barrier. On the other hand, Blake Stitched shoes aren’t that waterproof to an extent.

Flexibility: Shoe flexibility is necessary whether it’s for sprinting or for a casual walk. The smoother movement of an adaptable shoe evades muscle pressures. A Blake Stitched shoe is more flexible as compared to the Goodyear welted shoes hence doesn’t cause walking issues.

Cost: Due to the simple shoe construction of Blake Stitch, they aren’t very expensive. On the other hand, because of the complex shoe construction of Goodyear welt, it tends to become more costly.

Durability: Long-lasting shoes not only save your resoling charges but also protect your feet during extremities. Blake Stitch shoes are quite durable, often, more than Goodyear Welt ones.

The bottom line

Eventually, both kinds of shoe constructions have their own pros and cons, and both make for worthy add-ons to your shoe closet. And though we agree that picking just one of these kinds of shoes may be difficult, what can’t be denied is that knowing the key differences between them can help you make a more well-informed choice. We hope this article helps on your next shoe shopping spree.



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SIZE CHART

 All our shoes are designed to match standard UK & US dress shoe sizes. However, to ensure the perfect fit, please go through below size chart:

UK

US

EURO

Approx. Foot length in cms

Approx. Foot length in Inches

7

8

41

25.0 - 25.5

9 7/8 – 10 1/8

8

9

42

25.8 - 26.3

10 1/8 – 10 3/8

9

10

43

26.5 - 27.0

10 3/8 – 10 5/8

10

11

44

27.3 – 27.8

10 6/8 – 11

11

12

45

28.0 – 28.5

11 – 11 2/8

12

13

46

28.7 – 29.2

11 2/8 – 11 4/8

13

14

47

29.5 – 30.0

11 5/8 – 11 7/8

14

15

48

30.2 – 30.8

11 7/8 – 12 1/8

 For a correct shoe size, please take the time to measure your foot. 

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