How To Resole Shoes

Think of all the money you can save learning how to resole shoes. Even if you don't need to save money, you can still enjoy resoling shoes as a hobby. Working with leather in this way can also lead to other enjoyable pastimes, such as making belts or purses.

To learn how to resole shoes, you will need:

  • Vise
  • Hammer
  • File
  • Utility knife
  • Panel nails
  • Shoe repair cement
  • Soles and half soles
  1. Begin by cleaning the soles of the shoes thoroughly. Allow them to dry completely if soap and water were used. Learning how to resole shoes can be a dirty job.
  2. Remove the insoles by using the utility knife. Carefully cut the old soles off. Be very careful because utility knives are super sharp and your hand could slip applying this kind of pressure.
  3. Use the file to "rough up" the bottom of the shoe where the old sole was previously attached. Doing this will help the new sole attach more securely. It's the same principle as sanding before you paint. To resole shoes, it's important that the sole adhere securely.
  4. Using shoe repair cement, coat the new soles and place them evenly on the bottom of the shoe. Coat the insoles lightly and place them carefully back into the shoe. If the shoe was also in need of a heel, cement the half soles into place as needed. Place the shoe in the vise and hammer five panel nails around the edge of the heel to secure it.
  5. After the cement has dried completely, use a knife to cut off any uneven or protruding edges. The file can be used to smooth everything out to perfection. With practice, you can learn how to resole shoes like a professional.


  • When learning how to resole shoes, be very careful with utility knives. Injuries from these types of knives can happen quickly and the cuts can be very deep.
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