Over the weekend, some dear friends and I had a little get-together to clean our historic shoes. My group is fairly active in several different time periods of both living history and "historical recreation," so we tend to have multiple wardrobes of kits that need tending.
I don't always get to my shoes as often as I should. I think it's a by-product of living in a consumer culture that encourages replacement rather than repair, and the fact that modern shoes (unless rather expensive) aren't always of a quality that makes repair and maintenance worthwhile. However, we just came off a rainy weekend at Fort Frederick Market Fair, and everyone's shoes need a good cleaning.
So we sat down with our brushes and rags, saddle soap and mink oil and polishes and waterproofings, and prepared our shoes for the coming summer season. There will be another shoe party later, in preparation for Pennsic (our annual two-week medievaloid camping trip to the wilds of Western Pennsylvania), and another to recover from the trip. There will be much mending and patching 'round my parts, too. I'll try to remember to include photos of the more interesting bits.