I want you to enjoy your new footwear, have it fit comfortably, and for you to be happy! Like all other quality leather products, your boots or shoes need to be taken care of. Your footwear needs minor attention for comfort, reliability and longevity. Please check out the store for the boot care products mentioned below.
After your footwear has been broken in, follow these instructions:
- Every two months apply a coat of Sno-Seal Beeswax Waterproofer. I sell Sno-Seal, and you can also purchase it at various sporting goods stores. This product will maintain your footwear and clean up any non-staining dirt and waterproof them. Following this instruction will prevent staining dirt from sticking to the leather, keep your feet dry, and keep the leather from getting damaged increasing the longevity and reliability of your footwear. When using Sno-Seal, be cautious. The instructions will tell you to preheat your footwear using a variety of methods. NEVER PLACE YOUR FOOTWEAR IN AN OVEN. Also be cautious using heat lamps. Overheating your shoes will cause the glue that attaches the soles to fail. Fiebing’s Aussie Leather Conditioner is also an acceptable product.
- If your boots or shoes get staining dirt on them or show signs of damage from the elements, clean them with Saddle Soap. Read and follow the instructions on the Saddle Soap. After the Saddle Soap dries, apply Sno-Seal.
- If you have neglected your footwear and notice the leather is damaged or dry, use Kiwi Mink Oil Paste.
Things to avoid:
- Never use Neatsfoot oil.
- Never leave your footwear anywhere with heat over 120° Fahrenheit. Like in your car during the summer. This will cause the glue affixing the sole to fail.
- Never pack away or fold your footwear wet. Once dry, it will want to stay in this shape.
- Never store items like wallets, beer cans or bottles, in your boots or shoes as you wear them. This will cause your boots to “fall” and sag.
Your boots or shoes should fit snuggly. Wear them with no socks or inserts the first several times. Your boots or shoes can fit snuggly, but not very tightly. Once on, they may be tight across the top of the foot and toes. This is normal. As you wear the boots over a few weeks, they will stretch and mold to your foot.
Troubles with Fitting
If the footwear does not fit the first time, try the second time anyway. Put a plastic grocery store bag over your foot to reduce friction and try again. Once the boot is on wear it around as long as you can. If the fit is still unbearably tight, contact me for an exchange. I will be happy to exchange your footwear for another size.
All the footwear is designed to be worn with insole inserts. I sell “Sof Sole Custom Memory” insoles, which retail for about $20. Inserts give you a heel cushion and arch support. There is no arch support otherwise. You can get inserts from me or go to your local store and get some.
For footwear with Laces
If you ordered footwear with laces, tie your laces tight during the break in process. This will help keep your foot in the proper position to break in the leather. You should never remove or put your boots or shoes on with the laces tied. Doing so will cause your boots or shoes to get over stretched, give you a sloppy fit and wear out faster.
For footwear with buckles
If you ordered footwear with buckles, keep the buckle strap tight during the break in process. This will help keep your foot in the proper position to break in the leather. You should never remove or put your boots or shoes on with the buckle done. Doing so will cause your boots or shoes to get over stretched, give you a sloppy fit and wear out faster. If you need new holes as the straps stretch, you can punch them yourself using a round punch.
For footwear with toggles
Toggles are attached to the shoes with knots that are designed to untie if they are twisted too tightly. Never turn your toggles more than 90 degrees in either direction. If at first the strap does not meet up with the toggle, tie a leather string through the buttonhole and around the toggle. Keep this string tight, and the strap will stretch to meet the toggle. If the strap is too loose, feel free to move the toggle to a position to keep it tight. It is as easy as moving a button. Use nylon waxed thread, available at Tandy and Leather Factory stores. You should never remove or put your boots or shoes on with the toggles done. Doing so will cause your boots or shoes to get over stretched, give you a sloppy fit and wear out faster. You will need to be vigilant about adjusting the knots and toggles to keep them tight.
Signs of Wear / Time to Repair
For vibram or crepe soles
The soles of the boots will wear out over time, normally about 2 years. If you walk on the inside or outside of your foot, this could happen very quickly, about 3 to 6 months. Look closely at the sole of your boots from the side. There are two layers; the top layer is the original leather sole that the footwear is sewn to; the bottom layer is the sole that is either smooth crepe or vibram tread.
Once you wear the smooth crepe or the vibram tread sole down to 1/8th of an inch for crepe or to the leather layer for vibram, it is time to replace the soles. If your foot is starting to walk off the heel of the boot either to the inside or outside because the sole material is worn down unevenly, then it is time to get the sole replaced before the footwear is ruined.
For leather soles
The soles of the boots will wear out over time, normally about 2 years. If you walk on the inside or outside of your foot, this could happen very quickly, about 3 to 6 months. Avoid concrete and asphalt as much as possible. These surfaces will wear the soles of your shoes very quickly.
Once you wear the leather down to about 1/8th of an inch, it is time to replace the soles. If you wear the soles down to the stitching, replace the soles immediately. If your foot is starting to walk off the heel of the boot either to the inside or outside because the sole material is worn down unevenly, then it is time to get the sole replaced before the footwear is ruined.
Your footwear is constructed in such a way that it can be taken to any shoe repair shop for repairs locally.
Returns and Exchanges
Your footwear may be returned or exchanged within 30 days of the ship date. Please return the footwear to me at the address on the top of these instructions. Make sure to enclose your packing slip so that I can credit or exchange properly! Please write your instructions on the packing slip, for example “Return” or “Please exchange for size X”. Returns will be refunded when they get back to me. Exchanges will be mailed back out within a week.Unless prior arrangements are made with me in advance, I will not refund shipping charges, only the price of the footwear itself. For exchanges, you pay the postage back to me, and I pay the return postage back to you.