A good pair of shoes, looked after well, will last a lifetime.
HOW TO CARE FOR YOUR SHOES
- CALF SKIN LEATHER
- CEDARWOOD SHOE TREES
- BRUSHES & CLOTHS
- GLACÉ SHINE
CALF SKIN LEATHER
Your beautiful hand dyed shoes are made using the finest calf skin leathers. We use calf skin for the outer vamp because it's beautifully soft, meaning you should find your shoes comfortable from a very early stage.
It's important that you take care of the leather. Think of it as your own skin; clean away the badness and refresh it with a good quality moisturiser.
We recommend Saphir's Creme Surfine. Dust off any excess dirt using a horse hair brush and then work in some polish to the whole of the upper. Less is more - you don't need to paint the shoe, only caress it with a dab or two of the cream. Allow it to seep into the pores, and then after 5 minutes or so, brush again with a separate brush or clean cotton cloth.
The cream contains a beeswax, pigment and moisturiser. The moisturiser will feed the leather, the pigment will add depth to the colour and hide away those nasty scuffs, and the beeswax will leave a beautiful lustre on the surface of the leather.
CEDARWOOD SHOE TREES
The greatest gift you could give your hand dyed shoes is a set of cedarwood shoe trees. Imagine a tree pulling up moisture from the ground - the shoe tree is designed to do the same thing.
The inside of your hand dyed shoes is lined with cow skin - a more durable component compared to the soft calf skin leather on the outside of the vamp. Cow skin, whilst durable, absorbs moisture, particularly sweat and rainwater. This is a good thing. Many brands use pig skin for the lining because it's cheaper, but pig skin doesn't absorb and so you end up with sweaty feet and a rather grim looking inner after 6 months or so. We want the cow skin to absorb, but to be robust,,and so a set of shoe trees are the perfect compliment for long lasting maintenance.
Whenever the shoes aren't on your feet, slide in your cedarwood shoe trees. The spring mechanism will allow them to fold and mould itself perfectly inside the shoe, reducing the creasing around the toe box. Leave them for around 24 hours, and they'll work their magic, absorbing all the salty sweat, bacteria and nasties that you don't want to leave inside a beautifully made shoe.
The only brushes you should use on your hand dyed shoes is a horse hair brush. Horse hair is soft and so it will not scratch the beautiful polish that you have built up on your shoes.
We highly recommend the Saphir horse hair brushes.
Only cotton. A soft cotton cloth should be used to buff the polish into to a healthy glow. We recommend applying the polish with a finger, but if you want to keep them clean you can use a cotton cloth.
We highly recommend the Saphir cotton cloths for this.
MIRROR SHINE GLACÉ POLISH
There's nothing quite so sexy as a glacé finish on your hand dyed shoes. There are thousands of fabulous videos online showing you different techniques from all around the world on how to glacé finish a pair of calf skin, hand dyed shoes.
Our recommendation is to use Saphir Mirror Gloss polish. This is a surface polish (not a wax) that can be worked into a stunning, glass-like shine with a few key ingredients... a tear drop amount of luke-warm water, cotton wool, some warm breath and most of all, patience!
Apply some polish using your finger to the toe and heel of your shoes. Work it in until it goes cloudy. Apply a tiny amount of water, and then get to work. Small circles with the cotton wool, a slow pace, a touch more polish and lots of breath.
You'll see the glacé beginning to appear, but don't rush it. If you want more shine, simply repeat until you're happy.
Remember, just the toe and heel. We don't want glass slippers!