My Dad used to snowshoe many miles in boarding school in Manitoba sporting mukluks and several pairs of socks. He has talked about his experiences since we were kids and has wanted a new pair for quite some time. I started working leather last year, mainly recycling old coats or pants into hand bags. When I picked his name for Christmas this year, I knew exactly what I wanted to make for him. Using an old pair from a family friend as a model and many hours on Google, I strung together ideas to string together his Christmas gift.
Step 1: The Tools
The best leather to reduce humidity and therefore help keep your feet warm is supposedly deer. The deer leather I found was beautiful but not very thick nor rugged. I opted for vegetable-tanned cow hide for the sole, scrap cow hide for the tongue and deer hide for the leg. Veg tan is very rigid stuff and initially I had thought it just needed some breaking in. Turns out it won't wear down to become a flexible sole so I suggest using malleable leather and glueing on a crepe sole to protect it should you try to tackle this project on your own.
Tanner's bonding cement is handy to keep the pieces in place in addition to the thread, which is coated in wax so it's easier to handle. The leather conditioner is mainly beeswax and helps protect the leather from moisture. For deco I picked up some coyote teeth and bone.