Jesse has been with Aurora Shoe for more than a decade. In that time he has become the resident expert at turning pieces of wrinkly leather into perfectly formed shoes that hold a shape and invite your feet to enter. This process, called "wet forming" is one of the most unique steps in our shoes' production. While most shoe makers form their shoes on a last, Jesse shapes ours by hand, leaving enough stretch for your feet to complete the final fitting.
After dipping each shoe into a warm water bath, Jesse uses a 5 pound shaping tool and smooths the leather, pushing the uppers and heel cups into place. After the shoes are shaped they are sent to the drying rack where they await straps, buckles and a final trimming. Many of our shoes will never see this shaping tool again, but if you're lucky enough to be fitted in our shop, you just might see us using it to stretch the leather a bit further, making for a more comfortable fit at the start.
It makes a difference, huh?
Jesse hasn't always been a shoe craftsman. Before joining the Aurora Shoe team, Jesse spent most of his adult years working on a small local dairy farm. He's been known to say that while he enjoyed farming very much, it is nice to be working inside, and out of the elements. It's pretty cold here in upstate NY (we were in single digits over the weekend) so we can't say that we blame him!
Many people also know Jesse as one of the moral pillars of our community. He spent several years volunteering his time as a Sunday school teacher and is one of the kindest, most honest and hard-working men you could ever meet. We feel honored to know and work with Jesse and hope that you enjoyed "meeting" him as well.
Check back to meet more of the personalities behind our shoes!