The Manual - The jargon of shoes

If you want a proper pair of shoes, you need to know how to think like a shoemaker. The first step? As with any bid for domination - learn the language.

Agelets - The tiny plastic or metal sheaths placed on each end of a shoe lace

Channel Knife - An old-fashioned hand tool used to cut the grooves when constructing a shoe's sole.

Last - the solid form that a shoe is moulded upon and that determines the shoe's exact shape and size.

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Lasting pincers - A metal tool with curved jaws meant for pulling the uppers tightly around the shoe last.

Pig - A term used by London shoemakers for a bespoke shoe that, for whatever reason, has gone irredeemably wrong. (Also known as "NFG", i.e. No Fucking Good)

Skiving - Tapering the edges of the uppers and liners to prevent lumpy seams.

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