Chatting,  My projects,  Shoemaking

I made a pair of iron age/Viking shoes

Now that the worst heatwave has gone, I have started to plan for future projects. I have admired the work that goes into iron age re-enactors garments and decided that I want to make my own outfit. It’s particularly interesting as the iron age Finnish woman’s dress differed from a more well-known Viking woman’s apron dress. However, I need to start from the basics, and while searching for period-appropriate fabrics for the actual clothes I have plenty of things to make. What could be a better starting point as a pair of iron-age shoes?

To be honest, there are no surviving samples of pre-medieval shoes found in Finland. Therefore the model of the shoe re-enactors wear is the best guess and based on European sources and later finds in Finland. I found this tutorial online and decided to follow it. However, there are several different ways one can make a functional shoe out of one piece of leather. Here is a tutorial from Estonia for a different kind of shoe.

Here is a video in which I chat about my hobby and make the shoes:

Now I have to practice some nålbinding to make socks that go with the shoes. This time I wore my shoes with knitted socks but knitting as a craft is a much more recent invention.

And here are some more pictures:

Iron age shoes or "kurpposet" from the front.

I am particularly happy that I used light-coloured leather strip to sew the heels together. The different colour looks decorative to me.

The stitched heels of my iron age shoes.

Of course, these are not shoes for wet weather or for winter. But I can imagine going around wearing things like this during the summer or when inside.

The shoes from the side view.

I still should coat the shoes with some beeswax to make them more waterproof but I’m not in a hurry to do it.

Thank you so much for reading and please comment and subscribe to my blog and my YouTube channel! Happy Sewing!


I am a mother of two. I sew, knit and create and blog about it.


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