Paul Kaufman Shoe Design Masterclass - Atlas Obscura

Los Angeles, California

Paul Kaufman Shoe Design Masterclass

An in-depth workshop exploring the foundational elements of shoe design with a legendary shoe designer.

Take the ancient art and practice of creating a shoe into your own hands (ahem, or feet). While the specialized skill of shoe making is disappearing, there are luckily a few dedicated individuals still working to keep this essential craft alive. This is a unique chance to work with a master and explore the current world of footwear. 

Award-winning shoe designer and creative visionary Paul Kaufman will lead this intensive workshop at his studio and gallery space in downtown Los Angeles. In this session, Paul will take the group deep into the process of designing a pair of shoes — from inspiration to idea, to design creation, to working out the pattern, to manufacturing realities and marketing approaches. The purpose here is to show the craft and artistry possible in this creative form. A form that is quickly being pushed aside for mass produced and poorly made foot wear. 

Paul blends history, lecture and practical application while attendees work on their own creation. By the end of the masterclass, each person will have their own basic pattern, based on the available lasts (shoe-forms) in the class, from which they then could use to have a pair of shoes made.

Drawing skill is helpful but not required. The workshop is about understanding the process and exploring an art form more than about becoming a designer. As a long time educator and passionate spokesperson for shoe making, Paul understands the power of bringing our creative visions to life in simple ways, regardless of skill level! Take this rare opportunity to learn about a vital element of our heritage. 

ABOUT pskaufman...

Long known for his design work with numerous brands, Paul decided to put his name to a brand that would completely reflect his passion for shoemaking and his values. Throughout a long design career, Paul seeks to create authentic products; expressing the heritage of shoemaking and a genuine appreciation of the artisans who make the shoes. He holds a firm belief in the value of making footwear that can be worn for decades, rather than months, using sustainable materials (like re-purposed truck tires and jet tire inner tubes). Constructed by hand, as well as on ancient machinery, his footwear has traveled back in time to help the wearer walk stylishly into the future. 


  • Price of the workshop includes all materials, including access to using available lasts (shoe forms).
  • Workshop attendees will leave the event with a roughly-prepared shoe design pattern. 
  • Refreshments and light snacks are provided. 
  • All skill levels and abilities are welcome. The workshop is structured to support attendees in being able to explore their creative side. 


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