Meet the Maker: Richard17th October, 2022
Meet Richard, one of the key members at the Viberg factory in Victoria, BC.
As with all of our shoemakers, Richard is extremely experienced in many areas of footwear production.
Hi Richard, tell us a bit about yourself and your role at our factory.
I’m one of many hands at our factory, constructing boots one by one. All of us shoemakers have multiple roles, but I primarily handle leather cutting, leather stock maintenance, insole and outsole preparation, heel block prep…and many more tasks. We try to help each other out as much as we can.
Can you tell us a bit about your history with shoemaking?
I’ve been a shoemaker for 6 years now, I apprenticed under a master Cordwainer practicing traditional methods - handcrafting shoes without any use of machines. I used to make only men’s formal dress shoes by hand before joining the Viberg team. But here at the factory, I've transitioned to using more machinery for production to speed things along.
What style are you wearing, and how are these boots different from other pairs you’ve owned in the past?
I’m wearing the Uplands Chukka Boot in Brandy Viking Calf here… Since I’m kinda lazy (laughs), I like to slip into my boots with relative ease, without the hassle of fiddling around with the laces of a 6-9 eyelet boot. With this pair here, I only have to tighten with one yank then tie a knot. I like this Uplands Chukka Boot because of it's sleek, lower profile - it's got a bit of a classic derby shoe look. Formal yet casual. They remind me of an elevated version of a pair of desert boots I used to wear long ago.
Do you have a favourite style or model that you either enjoy making or wearing particularly?
I don’t really have a favourite style - I just find joy in working with exotic leathers like kudu or kangaroo, or with difficult leather such as horsebutt or Shell Cordovan, regardless of the model. In the context of making shoes and boots, these leathers can be very difficult to work with, but the end results after overcoming challenges are very rewarding as a shoemaker.