Sneaker School - Day 1

The Decon/Recon course started today in Downtown LA.

Prior to the start of class, we selected a base shoe for customization. 

I chose to build my custom sneaker from the Air Jordan 1, designed by Peter Moore.  Besides the color of the outsole, the base colorway of the shoe doesn't matter, we will be replacing all the upper materials with a selection of leathers from Ecco Leather.

 Air Jordan 1

Air Jordan 1

The first step in the deconstruction is removing the stitching and the outsole from the upper.

The bone folder, one of the tools we received with the class, is vital for separating the leather from the outsole without damaging either surface.

 Removing the sole using a bone folder

Removing the sole using a bone folder

After the outsole is removed, I deconstructed the upper starting with the swoosh.

A thread puller and exacto knife were used to remove each component with surgical precision.

IMG_5831.JPG

There are over 1000 individual stitches in each shoe.  During the deconstruction process, I could see deeper into the footwear manufacturing process.  I started to understand how and why pieces are shaped in a certain way.  Why double and triple stitches exist at critical points in the shoe.  You can see the amount of labor that goes into making each pair of shoes.

 Swooshless

Swooshless

The end result was 15 pieces needed for pattern tracing.

 The final product of deconstruction

The final product of deconstruction

The final task for day 1 was pattern tracing.

Along with tracing the outside profile of each piece, we had to trace the stitch lines for all pieces that overlap other pieces.

UP NEXT - DAY 2 - material selection and pattern cutting

Sources

http://www.complex.com/sneakers/2015/05/why-the-chicago-jordan-1-matters