Footwear stitching techniques


The technologies, equipment, machines and processes for closing the upper components of footwear by various seams such as closed, lapped, butted, welted, piped and moccasin.

Alternative labels

stitching techniques for footwear uppers
stitching techniques for footwear uppers closing
footwear stitching processes and techniques
stitching techniques for footwear
stitching processes and techniques for footwear uppers
stitching processes and techniques for footwear

Skill type


Skill reusability level


Relationships with occupations

Essential knowledge

Footwear stitching techniques is an essential knowledge of the following occupations:

Pre-stitching machine operator: Pre-stitching machine operators handle tools and equipment for splitting, skiving, folding, punching, crimping, placking, and marking the uppers to be stitched and, when needed, apply reinforcement strips in various pieces. They may also glue the pieces together before stitching them. Pre-stitching machine operators perform these tasks according to the instructions of the technical sheet. 
Footwear production manager: Footwear production managers plan, distribute, and coordinate all necessary activities of the different footwear manufacturing phases ensuring the adherence to quality standards and production and productivity pre-defined goals.
Footwear stitching machine operator: Footwear stitching machine operators join the cut pieces of leather and other materials to produce the uppers. They use several tools and a wide range of machines such as flat bed, arm and one or two columns. They select threads and needles for the stitching machines, place pieces in the working area, and operate with the machine guiding parts under the needle. They follow seams, edges, markings or moving edges of parts against the guide. Finally, they cut excess thread or material from shoe parts using scissors or dyes.
Footwear hand sewer: Footwear hand sewers join the cut pieces of leather and other materials using simple tools, such as needles, pliers and scissors to produce the uppers. Also, they perform hand stitches for decorative purposes or for assembling the uppers to soles in case of complete footwear.

Optional knowledge

Footwear stitching techniques is optional for these occupations. This means knowing this knowledge may be an asset for career advancement if you are in one of these occupations.

Footwear production machine operator: Footwear production machine operators tend specific machines in the industrial production of footwear. They operate machinery for lasting, cutting, closing, and finishing footwear products. They also perform routine maintenance of the machinery.
Footwear quality controller: Footwear quality controllers perform visual analysis of the aspects of footwear, raw material and components applying criteria previously defined and decide on rejections or acceptances. They analyse collected data, prepare reports and deliver them to quality management. They apply previously defined quality management tools aiming at the better achievement of the objectives stated in the quality policy. They participate in monitoring and control of the quality system and in the implementation of corrective and preventive measures.
Footwear production technician: Footwear production technicians perform a wide range of activities regarding footwear manufacturing. They are involved in all phases of the process including product engineering and different types of construction. They aim at maximising productivity and reducing production costs, assuring the functionality and quality of product and customer satisfaction.
Footwear production supervisor: Footwear production supervisors monitor and coordinate day-to-day production activities of a footwear manufacturing plant. They oversee quality control to ensure that the end product is in alignment with production specifications, and manage the footwear staff. The work also involves negotiations with suppliers as well as taking care of the production plan and production costs.
Footwear maintenance technician: Footwear maintenance technicians are the professionals who install, program and tune different types of cutting, stitching, assembling and finishing equipment used in footwear production. They perform preventive and corrective maintenance, and verify periodically working conditions and performance. They analyse faults, correct problems, repair and substitute components or pieces, and do routine lubrications, providing information on their use and energetic consumption mainly to the decision makers inside the company.




  1. Footwear stitching techniques – ESCO


Last updated on September 20, 2022

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