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Gossville Shoes

Gossville is a one-mile section of Epsom, NH. It was named after William Goss, a prominent Epsom citizen from the 1800s. He was largely responsible for the growth and development of that small section of small-town New England.

Gossville Shoes are the result of research and the quest for quality. We have spent years honing our skills and developing a product that we would be proud to call ours. The best advertising are satisfied customers, and our goal to do just that - satisfy customers.

We have a range of construction methods and materials and corresponding prices that should be able to meet the needs and pocketbooks of most buyers. We make two styles of shoes at this point in time - we make a 17th century shoe that is used by Plimoth Plantation, and we make an 18th century shoe similar to those used at Colonial Williamsburg.













Construction Methods and Prices

uppers cut out

uppers dyed

The first step in making our shoes is cutting out the uppers. This is done by hand, using historic patterns made by hand. This is the case with all our shoes. The uppers are then dyed according to the color desired by the customer.


uppers closed side view

uppers closed front view

Once this is achieved, the quarters are sewn together and the counter is glued and sewn in. The vamp is then sewn to the quarters. Sewing the uppers together is called closing.


uppers lasted view 1

uppers lasted view 2

The inner sole is then cut and tacked to the bottom of the last, with the smooth side against the last. The upper is soaked in water to achieve saturation and the shoe is lasted, or stretched over the last and tacked to the inner sole.


welting

The welt is added and the upper, welt and inner sole are sewn together. The space between the inner sole and the finish sole is filled with material and the finish sole is added and sewn on. Once that is accomplished, all that remains is to add the heel and trim the sole and heel. The last is pulled and the shoe is ready to be tried on.





Available Styles
Pilgrim Shoes
Colonial shoes

mens pilgrim shoe

mens 18th century shoe

grey pilgrim shoe

men's 18th century suede

mens buckle

blue colonial shoe

womens brown pilgrim with ribbon

womens brocade

mens wingtip

ladies wingtip



Pilgrim and Colonial Shoes
are available in the following construction options:


CEMENT CONSTRUCTION starts at $225

The first level of pricing uses a method of construction known as cement construction. This is an acceptable method of construction for modern shoes, and uses no sewing between the uppers and the sole. Modern, state-of-the-art cements and glues make this possible, and a cement constructed shoe is capable of being danced right through to the sock before it comes apart. The upper is closed using a sewing machine. This method of construction is more for inside use, though, as constant use in mud, or in the barnyard might compromise adhesion. These shoes are made on modern lasts, with lefts and rights.

FAIRE STITCHED shoes start at $250

The next level of construction is known as faire stitched. This method is the same as cement constructed, with the added machine sewing of the inner sole, upper and welt. The finish sole is added and machine sewn to the welt and the heel is attached using cement and heel machine.

FAIRE STITCHED SHOES ON STRAIGHT LASTS start at $300

If you want a more accurate shaped shoe, you have the option of getting a faire stitched shoe on a straight last. The machine sewn upper is lasted on a straight last, which is more historically accurate.

HAND SEWN UPPERS, FAIRE STITCHED, STRAIGHT LASTS - $450

An increased level of historical accuracy is hand sewn uppers on straight lasts, but using faire stitched construction. All sewing on the upper is done using the round (butt-sewn) closing method, which is the method used by master shoemakers of centuries past.

PURIST'S DREAM - $600

The ultimate in historically accurate shoes is the purist's dream. The uppers are hand-sewn and the shoe is made entirely by hand, using methods proven by master shoemakers from centuries past. The difference is that I use the modern cement and polymer based thread, which is superior to the historically accurate materials. The thread will not break down as fast as the cotton, linen or hemp threads used by our predecessors.

FANATIC'S DREAM - $700

For the fanatics in the historic world, I grudgingly offer the Purist's Dream with historically accurate materials - wheat paste and hemp thread throughout. I offer it grudgingly because the shoe is more likely to fall apart, if the wheat paste breaks down (it is water soluble) or the thread rots. If a shoe that costs a lot of money falls apart after two or three years, it is going to be complained about by the buyer. This is likely to damage the reputation of the shoemaker, and as earlier stated, the best advertising is a satisfied customer.





Fitting the Shoe

The safest method of correct fitting is to send me a tracing of your feet. I will match up the last that comes closest to your foot and make the shoe on it. I do not guarantee a correct fit -- I am not a custom shoemaker. If there are modifications needed, I will make them at an extra cost. It will be easier and probably cheaper to find a shoe repair shop near you and have them do it. I only make shoes in one width, so there's a fair chance that the shoes will need fine-tuning.

TRACING YOUR FOOT

Place a piece of paper large enough to fit your entire foot on the floor and place your foot on it. Using a yellow school issue pencil, and holding it at a 90 degree angle to the floor, trace your foot all the way around. Then angle the pencil and trace the inside of your arch. Do this on both feet. It is easier and more accurate to have someone else trace your feet than to try to do it yourself. Once this is accomplished, mail it to me and we can start the process.

Mailing address:
Wood, Leather & Stone, etc. LLC
Bruce and Penny Graham
1758 Dover Rd
Epsom, NH 03234




Shoe Care

Shoes are made of leather, and leather eventually breaks down. Everything wears out, breaks, dies, rusts, etc. There are things we can do that helps to prolong the use or functionality of an item - we change the oil frequently in our cars and paint our houses.

Leather can be preserved rather easily. It must be cleaned when it gets dirty and it must be moisturized. The former is accomplished with a stiff brush, and the latter is accomplished by using any one of several products. One of the most standard is neatsfoot oil, applied with cloth, dauber or paint brush. Some use saddle soap, which comes in either paste or liquid. It cleans the leather as well as moisturizes it. My favorite product contains beeswax and comes in a paste form. It is applied to the surface and then melted into the leather by applying heat, as with a hair dryer. I like to apply several layers, which I follow with a thorough buffing.

I hope you find Gossville Shoes as satisfying as they are intended to be.






Bruce Graham







Links

New England Shoemakers.org

Village Green Clothier.com




© 2012 Wood, Leather & Stone, etc. LLC
Bruce and Penny Graham ~ 1758 Dover Road ~ Epsom ~ New Hampshire ~ 03234
Phone: (603) 736-9044 ~ hidesmith@aol.com
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