Monthly Archives: July 2012Monthly Archives: July 2012

Roughout Leather

There is a common misperception that “roughout” leather is less durable than full grain leather.   Leather is composed of three parts: the skin surface (top grain), the middle (corium), and the bottom of the hide (flesh side). Many tanneries remove, or split off, the top grain of the leather side for use in the manufacturing of other goods. This leaves only a portion of the leather to be used toward a pair of boots, resulting in less durable upper leather.  For our roughout boots, the full grain leather remains intact and the leather is simply inverted, placing the top grain surface on the inside of the shoe.

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Charles Beckman | Company Founder

Shortly after arriving in the States from Germany in the late 1800s, the Red Wing Shoe Company’s founder, Charles Beckman, started working at a leather tannery in Red Wing, Minnesota. Situated right on the banks of the Mississippi River, Red Wing had been an industrial area since its founding in 1857, and Beckman recognized a need for sturdy boots by the town’s hardworking residents. After working at a local tannery, Beckman decided to open his own shoe store. He later came to the realization that the boots he was selling didn’t live up to his own standards or the needs of his customers. He decided that in order to find a more comfortable and durable boot, he’d have to make his own.

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New Series | Shoemaking Mondays

Shoemaking Monday will feature a photo and definition that highlights a step specific to the way we construct our boots and shoes. Every Monday, we will post a picture on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook to show you how we make our Red Wings.