Best Shoe Trees: CEDAR SHOE TREES
Cedars are one of the most popular tree species used for shoes. They have a very strong and durable wood. Cedar is commonly found in the woods, but it is not as common in footwear due to its fragility.
However, cedar trees do grow well in some areas of the world where soil conditions are favorable and water supply is plentiful.
The cedar tree is native to North America. It grows in open forests and shrublands from sea level up to around 3,000 feet (900 meters). There are several subspecies of cedar.
The American cedar is the largest and the most widely grown species. Its wood is prized for furniture making, flooring, musical instruments and other crafts. Other varieties include the European white oak, the Asian redwood and the Brazilian blackwood.
The cedar’s bark is tough and resistant to rot. The wood is light and easy to work with. It is relatively inexpensive compared to other woods, but it does require more care than other woods such as ash or pine.
Because of its strength, durability and low cost, cedar makes up a large percentage of the lumber market worldwide. Cedar trees have a distinctive smell that some people find pleasing. This pleasant aroma makes cedar shoe trees more appealing to customers.
Cedar’s natural oils make it resistant to pest and fungal attack. When this oil is applied to shoes, it prevents the leather from becoming brittle or cracked. Cedar absorbs moisture and also has a deodorizing effect.
It keeps shoes smelling fresh and clean even if you wear them every day. Airing your shoes with cedar shoe trees will prolong the life of your footwear.
Cedar is also a renewable resource. Replanted and well managed, cedar forests could potentially provide lumber for future generations to come. Cedar is also a relatively easy wood to work with.
It carves, nails and sands smoothly. Cedar has a straight grain and is not prone to knots or other defects that would interfere with the manufacturing process.
Best Shoe Trees: WOODLORE SHOE TREES
The Woodlore Company is an Australian company manufacturing some of the finest shoe trees available today. The company was founded in 1932 by a man named H.G.
Parsons with just six workers and one small factory. Today it has over 180 employees and multiple factories that produce a variety of items from leather goods to office supplies to outdoor equipment.
The Woodlore Company’s shoe trees are constructed out of beech wood from sustainable forests. Beech trees grow all over the world in many different soil conditions. They thrive in temperate to sub-arctic climates with rainfall between 20 to 60 inches (50 to 150 centimeters).
The seeds need sunlight to germinate, so they do not do so well in full shade. The trees do not grow as high as other types of hardwoods such as oak and maple. Beech trees are typically harvested between 80 and 100 years of age to prevent depletion of the forest’s nutrients.
Beech trees have a relatively soft wood that is easy to work with. It does not splinter or shred when cut. The light color of the wood makes it easy to turn, carve or bend.
The wood absorbs paint and stains well, but glues and nails well too. Beech is a relatively soft wood, but it is strong enough to use for furniture and flooring. It has been used for centuries in the construction of houses and buildings, particularly in Europe.
The shoe trees are designed with an innovative dual-purpose lifter. This lifter not only lifts your shoes off of the floor, but also props up the front of the sole slightly so that you can put your shoes on or take them off easier. The lifters are designed to accommodate a wide range of shoe styles including dress shoes, casual shoes or boots.
The lifters are adjustable to accommodate thicker or higher heels, as well. In addition to the lifters, the shoe trees also feature heel forms and toe cups to keep your heels and toes from wearing down and to maintain the general shape of your shoes.
The shoe trees are available in black or a light mahogany finish. The standard shoe trees are sized to fit men’s shoes sizes 8 through 12. They are also available in a set of three sizes, small (women’s 5 to 7 and children’s 1 to 4), medium (men’s size 8 to 10, 13 and 14) and large (men’s size 15 and 16).
An optional kit with screw-in hooks makes it easy to mount these shoe trees on walls or inside cabinets. The kit has four, two inch screws and four screw hooks. You can mount two or more shoe trees anywhere you need storage space.
The shoes are held securely out of the way and off of the floor, but remain easily accessible.
The Woodlore Company also produces a fine line of leather balm and various other shoe care products that maintain and preserve leather. These products are used by manufacturers, professional shoe repair shops as well as hobbyists.
Sources & references used in this article:
Expansible shoe trees with tubular heel portions by FP Dewitt – US Patent 2,811,731, 1957 – Google Patents
Plastic shoe tree by RE Johnson – US Patent 3,263,252, 1966 – Google Patents
Shoe-tree by WR England – US Patent 1,506,519, 1924 – Google Patents
Shoe disinfectant device by JE Malberg – US Patent 2,510,315, 1950 – Google Patents
Foldaway shoe tree by WF Sheppard – US Patent 2,452,689, 1948 – Google Patents
Foldable shoe tree having means for engaging the heel of a shoe by JH Myers – US Patent 2,799,032, 1957 – Google Patents