This section is from the book "The Manufacture Of Boots And Shoes: Being A Modern Treatise Of All The Processes Of Making And Manufacturing Footgear", by F. Y. Golding. Also available from Amazon: The Manufacture Of Boots And Shoes.
Take the last - by preference a left-foot one - and first mark on the front the position of measurement of toes, joint, and instep (A, B, C, Fig. 104). Lay the last with the toe to the left hand upon a suitable piece of paper, and, bending the paper to the last, keeping a downward tendency towards the toe, mark upon the paper the positions of the toe, joint, and instep (A, B, C, Fig. 104). A line is drawn close to the top of the back of the last (D, Fig. 104) upon the paper, care being taken not to move the last. The centre of the top of toe is now indicated upon the paper, and the bottom of the back of the last also marked. The training of Soule's system will enable a tracing to be made that will give an outline of the forme required. The dotted line in Fig. 105 will indicate this outline, where XYxy is the paper and Aa, Bb, Cc the positions of the points of measurement. After this has been done - and it requires some little practice to do it properly - remove the last from the paper, and the forme will be as Fig. 106. It is now necessary to measure the last and pattern, and to make it correct. In principle a point of common measurement should be fixed. It is found most convenient to use the seat-point, and this is obtained thus: The instep point C, on the pattern and last, if carefully executed, coincides; also the top of the last, D, Fig. 104. These then enable us to establish the seat. The last is taken and measured from D to S (Fig. 104), and this measurement marked from d to s on Fig. 106, as shown. The last is also measured round from C to S (Fig. 104), and one-half of this taken, and from c (Fig. 106), marked towards the line made by measuring from d to 9.
* This system does not give the exaggerated shape that the Soule's system gives - if it be properly worked.
If this were a ladies' 5's last it would be 11/2 in. in 3 in. and 5 in. respectively taken from the top of the toe of the last in a straight line.
Where these intersect is the seaf-point which is used as a starting-point for other measures. A point is sometimes taken at 0 * as a starting-place, instead of the seat, but the seat is recommended as most useful. A measurement from the seat round the last - keeping the tape or cord in as straight a line as possible on the last - passing through B, Fig. 104 (half of this is measured in Fig. 106 from the seat s), towards b, and where it intersects verifies the joint position. This is repeated for the toes a, and the positions 1,2, and 3, Fig. 106.
The girths are now taken, and if measured from "feather to feather," half of them applied to pattern as N, O, P, Fig. 106.
The length requires to be checked, which is done by using one edge of the tape or a piece of non-elastic cord, and, starting from the "feather" of the toe, proceeding up the toe to the top or puff, thence passing round the seat back again over the top of the puff, to the feather ; half of this distance from the seat gives the length without lasting over allowances. In the hands of an experienced person, it is not absolutely necessary that the cutting of a forme be made a separate process, as it may be combined with the actual standard.
Lasting Over Allowances may be made by adding to the nett forme an amount equal to the substance of the inner sole (if any), and the thickness of the upper. The amount will also vary as to the method of making, such as machine-sewn or hand-sewn. Sometimes these allowances are averaged in denominations of the inch, and at other times by allowing in length a certain fixed number of sizes over the length of the last, for the upper pattern. In the former way the table would be Hand-sewn ... .... .... 1/4 in.
* This point is located by a simple rule, viz. the height of stiffener; and is found by taking one quarter of the instep-girth from feather to feather; so that it varies according to the kind of foot or last, whether arched or flat.
Machine-sewn, etc.... ... 1/2 „
„ „ stouter ... 5/8 „
Welted ,,, ... ,,, 1/4 „ forepart, 1/2 in. in seat and the average on the latter plan would be Medium Substance.
Fittings 1 and 2.
Fittings 3 and 4.
Fittings 5 and 6.
Machine-sewn ... Hand-sewn ......
4 sizes. 3 1/2 „
4 1/2 sizes.
5 sizes. 4 1/2 „
3 1/2 „
4 ,, 3 1/2 „
4 1/2 „
2 1/2 „
3 1/2 „
The fitting of the last and its shape will cause these amounts to vary, as also will the stretchiness of the upper, and the mode of lasting.
Pitch is a term that is used in a variety of ways, to describe principles that are not identical. Sometimes it is used to signify the elevation of the seat portion of the pattern to accommodate the height of the heel, and when used thus it corresponds to the term as used by the last-maker. In this sense, a pattern may be said to be correctly or incorrectly pitched for a certain height of heel. The term is used also, and more usually, to describe the position or relation of the leg to the foot-covering portion of the pattern. This is likewise called " leg position." The variations of pitch, in this sense, would be caused by (1) the formation or type of foot; (2) the upper would be pitched differently according to the substance of the material from which it is to be made, and (3) by the mode of lasting. In Fig. 107 a diagram of a flat and arched foot is given, showing the difference of pitch (used in meaning of "leg position") between them. The shaded portion AB shows the leg pitched forward, and, relatively, CD the leg pitched backwards. Assuming both of these kinds of feet had to be clothed with boots made from the same substance material, and lasted in identically the same way, then the patterns for them would be pitched differently. To make this fact the more evident, the illustrations Figs. 108 and 109 are given, the former showing a boot with a more backward pitch than the latter. It should be noted that if Fig. 108 were a correctly pitched boot for the kind of foot, then, if the boot shown in Fig. 109 were made for it, the one that was pitched too forward would cause a loose heel and wrinkles across the quarter, besides allowing the foot to go forward in the boot too much, needing a fuller jointed last and more length room. Fig. 109 is the style often made in the wholesale factories, because the excessive curve at the back and throat, when looked at in profile in the boot, appears more stylish. The fact that, when the boot is put on, the two points mentioned become more acute and relatively more forward is not usually taken into consideration.
The pattern would be pitched differently according to the substance of the upper. Assume that a light ooze calf and a leather-lined satin upper are cut respectively to the pattern that Fig. 108 was produced from, and, for sake of describing the principle, assume they are identically lasted, then the lighter stretchy upper (ooze calf) would assume the shape of Fig. 109, and the stouter (satin) would appear as Fig. 108; so that uppers of very light texture or of a stretchy nature require to be pitched more backward than those of a stouter or less stretchy material. The reason of this may be seen from the description of the "principles of lasting."
The mode of lasting will determine the pitch of the made up boot, and consequently it is often necessary to make provision for this in producing the standard pattern. Again, assume two uppers cut from the same material and by patterns which, when lasted the same way, would produce a boot as Fig. 108. Take one of these, and preparing the stuff and inserting stiffeners, etc., drop the upper at seat, say 1/2 in., and pull over at toe and last the upper. Next use the fellow upper, and drop it at the seat, say, 11/2 in., and pull over the toe. The first upper lasted will appear like Fig. 108, while the second would look more like Fig. 109. These facts are not well appreciated or known by pattern cutters, and if comprehended would enable many difficulties that occur to be readily remedied.
Inclination is the term used to express the relation of the front line of the leg of the boot to the ground-line or flat surface upon which the boot stands. The correct inclination of a boot depends upon its kind, purpose, and heel. In speaking of the front line of the leg it is intended to be the profile line as seen above the throat starting from the ankle bone. During walking, this front line alters its relative position to the ground, while the foot is on tip-toe it is relatively forward. When the step has been taken, and the heel is brought to the ground again, it is relatively to the ground backward. Which, then, is the correct position to make the boot ? The mean position between the extremes is the ideal. A boot constructed to carry a very high heel would require a different inclination to one made for a lower heel. It is customary to consider that the front of a boot should be at right angles to the ground, or flat surface upon which it stands, and variations made for the kind of boot - such as colliers', side-spring, etc. - are made from this position.