Studio ND started when I met a sandal maker in London. I couldn’t believe that she was making shoes by herself in a tiny space. I had always felt like shoes were a mystical object that came from a factory somewhere (mostly from factories with sub standard working conditions and illegally low wages). It hadn’t occurred to me that I could make them in my bedroom with a knife and some glue. So I started doing some research.
I discovered a quick and experimental process that allows freedom of creativity with consistently good results. Although my skills have moved forward from there, this is the workshop I now teach.
My sandal making workshops are for beginners and start with just a knife, glue and some leather. I’ve attended workshops where I’ve left with something beautiful and handmade only to get home and realise I have none of the tools or materials I need to make it again. For my own workshops I aim to keep it simple. In all honesty, all of the information and tools you need can be found online if you look hard enough. But I might be able to save you a bit of frustration.
Like that whole day I spent researching glue.
The leather I use is hand selected. I travel to London and Northampton and choose whatever looks and feels good. So although the leather will change from one workshop to the next, you will always have a pick of high quality leather in a beautiful range of colours.
I don’t want people to feel intimidated by making. I think making should not only be about creating and owning beautiful objects that enhance your life, but also about feeling empowered and independent. At the risk of feeling a little exposed, I think making has changed the course of my life for the better and that is something that should be shared.