Punches for shoemaking

"Shoemaking punchers" are specialized tools used to create holes or decorative patterns in shoe materials, facilitating processes like lacing, stitching, or adding embellishments. They come in various shapes and sizes to suit specific tasks. These punchers come in various sizes and shapes to produce round, slot, or decorative perforations. Their precise cutting ability ensures clean, consistent holes that enhance the shoe's functionality and design.

Wad punches

These tools create precise holes in leather for purposes such as lacing, stitching, or decorative accents. There's a range of hole punches available, with diameters spanning from 1mm to 15mm (needed for shoe making), catering to different needs in the shoemaking process.

making the holes with puncher in the sandal's strap

Here is an excellent article about wad punches: 

What is a wad punch tool and how are they used?

Drift Punches

Uniquely designed, these punches feature a hollow tube structure with a slot that facilitates the ejection of the punched-out piece, ensuring a clean cut. When using drift punches, a soft tap with a hammer, preferably with a plastic or rubber head, achieves the desired hole without damaging the edge of the punches.

Rotary Punches

 A versatile and efficient tool, the rotary punch boasts a revolving turret accommodating various hole sizes. This design means you can switch between sizes rapidly, making it particularly useful for varied tasks like creating lacing holes or adjusting for hardware.

Slot Punches

Slot punches are designed to create elongated holes or slots in leather. These slots are commonly used for buckles, clasps, for creating slots for straps inside insoles for sandals or any fixture that requires a longer opening rather than a round hole. They can also be used to create decorative features or functional slots for lacing in certain shoe designs.

There is a unique shoemaking method to making these slots within leather insoles for sandals using simple punchers with diametr of 2-3mm, and you can learn this technique step by step in this free shoe making tutorial:"How to cut leather insoles for sandals using simple tools".

Leather Chisel Punches

These tools are designed primarily to create slits or holes in leather that will accommodate stitches. They often penetrate all the way through the leather.They are often used in thicker leathers or where the craftsman intends to achieve a particular aesthetic with the stitch holes.

Pricking Irons

These are primarily marking tools used to indicate where stitches will go, ensuring even spacing and straight lines. They are not always intended to penetrate entirely through the leather.After making the impressions with pricking irons, a craftsman will often use an awl to create the actual hole for each stitch, following the pricking iron's marks.

Online  stores for shoemaking tools

There are several online stores where you can buy shoemaking, and here are a few where you can find some of these punches. Additionally, I'd recommend checking out local stores in your area.

For those just starting out in shoemaking, there's no need to invest in every type of punch right away and in every shoemaking tool. Initially, a wad punch with a diameter of 4-5 mm or drift punches will serve you well, especially for crafting shoes with laces that require holes in the upper like we use in Oxford shoes Course, Derby shoe Course, Sneakers Course, Unisex Sandals course or Dr Martens Boots. Alternatively, rotary punches offer versatility, allowing you to select from various hole diameters, making them a valuable addition to a beginner's toolkit.




All Shoemaking Supplies 

If you want to make shoes there is no way around it, you will need knifes, hammers, leather, glue, shanks, boards, and everything else to get the job done.
For that purpose I have created a detailed list of everything you need to make shoes.