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Can any decent cobbler be trusted to replace heels, and even soles? Or do you only trust your shoes to the manufacturers for work like this?

Thanks VERY much guys for putting up w/ my newbie questions.
I have no issue with using a local cobbler of good reputation and there is one. Recently replaced heels, and the work was very good. However, if there was a factory repair service available for a particular make of shoe, and it was a shoe worth preserving, I'd probably use it.
 

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I will send my AE's to AE because of their recrafting program. My cowboy boots go back to the maker for major work, so that I'll know it's done in the traditional way. But when I possibly can, I also support our very good local shoe repair guy. He does wonderful work, has been at it for 30 years, and needs to eat just like everyone else.
 

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Church's, Cheanys, etc are sent back to them; however, general wear shoes that I would wear just to got the shops, going to cousins, etc are sent to a local cobbler. There is a price difference but there is a quality issue too.

I have stopped purchasing shoes that cannot be resoled by the manufacturer.
 

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I've been fortunate to find a local cobbler who does excellent work and regularly use his services for most of my shoe repairs. However, my AE and Alden shell cords get returned to the manufacturers for re-crafting, as necessary.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I've been fortunate to find a local cobbler who does excellent work and regularly use his services for most of my shoe repairs. However, my AE and Alden shell cords get returned to the manufacturers for re-crafting, as necessary.
That seems like a sound strategy.
 

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I've sent Aldens off to be redone, and been very happy with them. But I also have a local shoe repair shop (I always assume that a "cobbler" also makes them from scratch). They do excellent work and frankly aren't any cheaper, just a bit quicker because there's no two-way mail service required.

I would be more inclined to use a private shoe repair shop of any kind over one located in a mall. Particularly if they're a franchise, the quality of the materials they use is not suitable for the kind of shoes that I think are worth repairing.
 

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Can any decent cobbler be trusted to replace heels, and even soles? Or do you only trust your shoes to the manufacturers for work like this?

Thanks VERY much guys for putting up w/ my newbie questions.
I would like to share some facts:

1. I have had many customers bring in their shoes that were rejected by manufacturers foe re-crafting. We successfully re-crafted their shoes to the customers satisfaction.

2. I have had many customers bring in their shoes that were re-crafted by the manufacturers and couldn't wear them when they got them back. We successfully re-crafted them to the customers satisfaction.

3. I have had customers that had the same shoes re-crafted a few times by us. Eventually they send them back to the manufacturer for (what they think is) a complete overhaul. The shoes were NOT rejected.

I'll explain why I think this happens.
The manufacturers are set up to do massive amounts of work in an assembly line type of production. Anything that comes in that needs correction from previous shoddy work gets rejected because it can not be run through the established production channels thereby eating away at profits.
Those of us in the repair business are aware of those cases. We deal with them everyday. The difference is we do every job one at a time and go out of our way to correct mistakes or shoddy workmanship from previous hacks that have worked on your shoes.

Here is the point:

A GOOD craftsman will have knowledge of the construction of any high-grade shoe regardless of the brand. He will NOT damage your shoes. Instead, he will use his talents to restore your shoes to pristine condition.
It's in HIS best intrests to do so!
Just as a GOOD plumber will not hack away causing damage elsewhere down the line. If he has pride in his work and wants to keep you as a customer he will work on your house as if it were his own.

It's as simple as that.
 

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I have no idea how to find out how good a cobbler is, but make sure you find out.

Out of 4 I have used, 3 were very good, and 1 was abysmal. The loose cannon took cuban heel boots and, without asking, made them into normal heels. -_-; That's inexcusable. I should have been wary--he did taxes as well and some other mundane task. TAXES-PLUMBING-SHOE REPAIR! Yikes.
 

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We've done shoe repair out of our retail shoe store for over 20 years and of course do a great job with it. So many times I have had customers come in to have their shoes repaired by us after already having them done by another repair service because it wasn't done right the first time. Sometimes, it could even cost you more to undo mistakes than have it repaired correctly the first time.

Bottom line, unless you've received a reliable recommendation from someone, I would stick with the manufacturers.
 

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Can any decent cobbler be trusted to replace heels, and even soles? Or do you only trust your shoes to the manufacturers for work like this?

Thanks VERY much guys for putting up w/ my newbie questions.
Most cobblers I've encountered to a good job replacing heels and soles. Sometimes they're better than the manufacturer.
 

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Local cobbler does sterling service. He's replaced soles and heels on Sargeants, Trickers, Churches and Cheaneys for me and they've all been done really well. He offers 2 different levels of leather and will source even better leather if asked. He polishes the shoes before returning them and is happy to do a quick turnaround. Find one like that and cherish them.
 
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