New York: Shopping Spot- How to Make Boots from Your Garage By: Courtney
If exclusivity is one of the most important things to you when it comes to your style,
and you get a high off of knowing you’re wearing something one-of-a-kind, then new
Bushwick spot, How to Make Boots from Your Garage, promises to thrill your style
How to Make Boots from Your Garage is built on these principles – those and the
solution to all those times you’ve dreamed up the perfect boot in your head only to
realize it doesn’t actually exist. This craft school/shop is the creation of designer
Olivier Rabbath, who was tired of not being able to find the shoes he envisioned for
his unisex line, Illusion. He studied the art of shoemaking, and now wants to share
with shoe lovers in New York.
At How to Make Boots from Your Garage, $375 will enroll you in a fifteen-hour
class that can span over the course of a week or a month.
During this class, you’ll learn how to make a pair of shoes from start to finish, and
then you will, of course, get to keep the pair you make.
This is DIY at its finest. You’ll learn from a master. You’ll reach that fashion nirvana
state of knowing that you are, without a doubt, the only person wearing those boots.
If you’re not feeling so hands-on, you can also shop Rabbath’s creations at the
Bushwick location. A buzzed-about favorite is a pair of boots with gold-plated heels.
As fashion continues to get more and more hands-on and community-based, making
your own boots could be the future of shopping.
How to Make Boots from Your Garage is at 180 Hoyt Street in Bushwick.
Meet Olivier Rabbath: Frenchman, Philosopher, and Jack of Many Trades
Posted on January 14, 2012 by Adam Warner
From his little shop in Boerum Hill, Olivier Rabbath, 51, makes magic. Born in Paris,
he moved to the states in 1987 pursuing his love
for fashion and boots. He felt France was too focused on the old world, which didn’t
give him room to expand and grow. He worked
in Miami, making thousands of boots by hand, before moving to New York and
opening up shop in Brooklyn.
He’s created well over 30,000 boots in his lifetime, and that’s not even mentioning
everything else he’s done. He’s also a cartoonist, painter, graphic designer, media
designer, decorator, composer, writer, and inventor (to name a few).
Even after all these years, life fills Rabbath with wonder, excitement, and energy.
He says while his friends age around him, he maintains his vitality by being
passionate about what he does and living in the moment.
His shop, How To Make Books from Your Garage, is a place of “magic,” according to
Rabbath. There, he teaches groups of aspiring-shoe makers his art. He says in this
tough economy it’s important that people feel proud about the work they do and
have fun doing it. By empowering his students and encouraging them to turn their
new hobby into a career, he hopes to influence a new generation that will be less
reliant upon big companies and mass-produced goods.
“What we’re doing here is beautiful,” he said. “We’re getting in touch with our roots.”
He also has a gift for gab, and many of his conversations delve into the universal and
Here are some sounds from his shop and some of his thoughts on boots,
consumerism, and life.
Rabbath has machines for shaping soles, cutting leather, and stiching shoes together:
He has a love-hate relationship with his home city, Paris. He says it’s beautiful but
too focused on the past. He enjoys New York’s ever-evolving attitude and it’s bend
He says people must take their time when learning a skill, recalling his experience as
an amateur shoemaker in Paris. While there, he sized the shoes wrong, so some
women were wearing a 12-size shoe when they should have been wearing, say, a nine:
Rabbath believes Henry Ford’s approach to product making is entirely wrong. His
ideal future is one where products are shaped organically, away from factories and
production lines, in people’s homes, which act as their shops:
He also says science has dealt humankind a bad card, and emphasizes the
importance of art and creativity in the evolution of our species.
Rabbath would like us to shed our post-Victorian tendencies and embrace our past,
one where we were more creatively impulsive and connected to nature:
This entry was posted in Jobs by Adam Warner.
Brooklyn Independent Television, a community media program of BRIC Arts | Media | Bklyn
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