The Best Way To Sew Leather Boots At Home

The Best Way To Sew Leather Boots At Home

Want to know sewing leather boots at home? The process is actually pretty straightforward. We have here the materials and a step by step guide if you want to make your own pair of boots.

  • Deer hide
  • Pattern for your boots
  • Heavy duty upholstery thread
  • Heavy duty needle
  • Leather thumb guard
  • Waterproof shoe repair glue
  • Lining material (optional)
  • Wood or rubber sole
  • Cutting tool
  • Sewing machine

Step by Step Guide

  1. Cut the patterns. Separate the right and left foot patterns.
  2. Get one of the patterns. Line the boot that stretches across the foot. Stitch this on the part that will become the sole.
  3. Stitch the top part of the shoe. Use a sewing machine to stitch the boot lining.
  4. After the lining is stitched, place your foot in the lining and the boot. Your foot must be comfortable. This might take a few trials and errors, so make sure you’ve got several patterns in reserve.
  5. Once you’ve got the right lining, carefully remove your foot. Once the lining is in place, it’s time for the boot shafts or calves. Sew these pieces. You’ll want to use the same whip stitch you did for the foot.
  6. As you stitch the shafts, add the lining edges into the stitches so the lining is in place.
  7. To add the sole, put shoe glue all along the sole’s top side. Place your foot in the boot. Put the sole on the boot. Press firmly on the ground. Wipe the excess glue away.
  8. Once the glue dries, your boots are ready to wear. Optionally you may choose to waterproof it. You may use any of the waterproof sprays sold today. You may also use wood stains or dyes to get the color you want.
  9. Once you’re done, you can condition the boots, oil, etc.

Sewing Tips

  • You cannot have do overs: each hole you make is going to leave its mark, so make certain the fittings and patterns are correct.
  • Pins make holes in leather, so you can only use them along seam allowances. If you don’t want these marks, use hair clips, paper clips or quilting clips, as those are compatible with leather.
  • Patterns should be cut one layer a time. Stick with simple patterns if you’re a beginner. You can always try more complex boots once you have the experience.
  • Be careful when cutting patterns and make sure they’re as smooth as possible.
  • Remember to put all the markings on the leather’s wrong side. There are lots of marking tools, but a tailor’s chalk or marking pen is the most ideal.
  • There is no need for seam finishes on leather because the edges aren’t going to fray. In fact, not having them enhances the leather’s look.
  • Leather allows you to use different seam options. Plain seams, top stitched, double stitched or single stitch will do. No single seam is correct, as it depends on what type of boots you’re trying to sew.
  • Always use new, heavy duty needles. It doesn’t matter if you’re sewing by hand or with a sewing machine. Make sure the needle can handle the thick material and that it won’t snap while you’re using it. Regular needles won’t cut it, so make sure that it is made for leather.
  • Test, test, test. Check the quality of the needle, the materials and if your measurements are correct.

Sewing with Suede

  • If you’re sewing ultra-suede, preshrink it. If you’re going to use fabric softener, use a liquid softener.
  • Make certain the nap on suede goes in the same direction.
  • Suede can be thick, so you might find it handy to use a weight pattern so the seams remain together.
  • Your sewing machine needs to have a sharp needle size 11 or 9. The stitch length needs to be around 12 inches per inch or longer. You may need even longer stitches depending on the type of boot you’re trying to sew.
  • Practice on a smaller project before working on something as complex as boots.

​Frequently Asked Questions

Question: Is it possible to sew leather with a regular sewing machine?

AnswerWith garment weight leather, it is possible, provided there isn’t a lot of bulk along the seams.

Question: Is it possible to sew synthetic leather?

Answer: Yes, the process is basically the same. Some fake leathers have flaws in the design that may make it difficult to work around though.

Question: Is it difficult to sew boot leather?

Answer: If you know how to sew, the process won’t be that hard. It will take more time because the leather is thick, especially work boots.  


Sewing leather boots takes some time, but it isn’t as hard as you may have thought. As long as you have the materials and time, there’s no reason why you cannot do it.