Shoemakers have their own language, consisting of specific terms for each technique or tool.
Here you can become a bit of a “shoe snob” by learning the essentials of the industry lingo.

Rough Shape

The piece of wood that is used for making a last

Attaching

The nailing of the insole to the last

Counter

A piece of leather that is inserted between the lining and the upper in order to give structure to the shoe

Upper

The part of the shoe that covers the upper surface of the foot

Vamp

The front of the Upper

Welt

Strip of stitched leather that keeps the upper and the outer sole firmly connected to the insole

Round Edge

Sole finishing without extension, generally with a rounded edge waist

Square Edge

An extension finish with a straight edge

Planed Edge

Sole finishing without extension, can be either round or square

Shank

A piece of leather that runs between the insole and outer sole under the arch, in order to give the shoe the desired rigidity

Whaist

The part of the outer sole that is located under the arch of the foot

Extended Seat Heel

Heel that has an extension, as opposed to a close seat heel

Blake Sewn

A type of shoe construction that consists of directly stitching the outer sole to the insole

Built Heel

A Heel composed of lifts, stacked layers of leather

To Channel

To make a cut in the thickness of the insole or outsole using a special knife

Top Piece

Traditionally made using leather and rubber, it is the last layer of the built heel