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Carreducker are master handsewn shoemakers based in historic Clerkenwell, London who learned their craft the traditional way, as shoe making apprentices. Today, they make bespoke shoes for private customers and deliver the bespoke shoe service at Gieves & Hawkes on Savile Row and at James Purdey & Son in Mayfair, London.
Passionate for the heritage, handsewn craft and keen to share their skills, Carreducker have been teaching shoe making since 2006. James Ducker originally taught shoe making at Cordwainers College and Deborah Carre was a visiting lecturer in shoe and accessory design at the London College of Fashion, so teaching has always been important to them.
Since they started teaching, the number and variety of courses has grown from one three-week course to a year-round syllabus of evening, short and longer classes and courses taught by industry experts. All subjects have handsewn shoemaking and craft at their heart from footwear pattern making, shoe care & polishing, 1-to-1 tuition and shoe making masterclasses to small leather accessory saddle stitch classes.
Their 12-Day intensive shoe making course is the longest running and one-of-a-kind. In just 12 days students are guided through the 200 plus steps of hand sewing a pair of shoes; starting with a rough pack of leather, a pair of shoe uppers and a pair of lasts (the blocks the shoes are made on) and finishing up with a pair of handsewn shoes they have made themselves.
Courses are taught at the Carreducker Shoe & Leather School on the Islington, Shoreditch, Hoxton borders housed appropriately in a converted factory with metal Crittal windows and exposed brickwork hinting at the buildings heritage. It is a warm, friendly and relaxed space to work in - with shoe and leather work tools hung along a long peg wall in the main work space, next to the bespoke work table and leather hides hung from the rafters in the neighbouring work room - making for a creative and inspiring space in which to learn.