Taking Care of Your Leather-soled Shoes: Rubberize
Don’t get me wrong, one of my favorite sounds is the gentle tattoo of leather soles on pavement. But I also don’t want to shell out for resoles too often, not only because it’s not cheap, but because even welted shoes can only take so many resoles before they begin to fall apart (given the number of shoes that people reading this might have—myself included—this would probably never happen, but still…).
One way to help prolong the life of your leather-soled shoes is to get a thin rubber sole glued on when they’re new(ish). Some may also opt to have heeltaps put on, but I’m not a huge fan of them—though they do serve their stated purpose of keeping your heel from wearing down. I find them a little slippery in certain environments, and thus avoid them.
You can see here that I had some rubber bottoms placed on the tasseled loafers I recently picked up for $35 from Nordstrom Rack. Though the sound of your walk might be diminished, and with it some of the joy to be derived from having leather soled shoes, I think the increased longevity they afford makes them a worthwhile investment and sacrifice…
If you live in the East Bay I recommend Model Shoe Renew on Shattuck Ave. between Hearst and Berkeley Way, just one block west of the UC Berkeley campus. Peter, the proprietor, is a friendly and honest guy who does solid work.