The production of a pair of shoes is carried out in several stages:

  • the manufacture of the shoe upper,
  • assembly (putting together the upper and the sole)
  • finishing.

Cutting out the different pieces, preparing them from stitching, then stitching create the shoe upper.
To assemble the shoe, the shoe upper is placed on a former (representing the foot), then the parts are assembled following a specific manufacturing process.

There are several different manufacturing processes. These days the most frequently used way of manufacturing shoes is welding them. The process uses different glues to join together the upper and the sole. The gluing process requires a great deal of preparation and rigour, as any deviation can compromise the shoe's sturdiness.

The main other processes are:

  • Mocassin stitch
  • Blake stitch
  • Goodyear stitch
  • Norwegian stitch
  • Sandal stitch
  • San Crispino stitch
  • California stitch
  • Moulded
  • Vulcanised
  • Back stitch


You will find below an illustration describing each of these techniques.


Mocassin stitch


Le cousu Mocassin  


Blake stitch

Le cousu Blake


Goodyear stitch

Le cousu Goodyear ou trépointe


Norwegian stitch

Le Cousu Norvégien



Sandal stitch

Le cousu Sandalette



San Crispino stitch

Le cousu San Crispino



California stitch

Le cousu California







Le Vulcanisé




Back stitch

Le cousu retourné



The illustrations above are taken from the book La Chaussure sous toutes ses Coutures  (The Shoe and all its Stitches) published by CTC in May 2008.