How It's Made
How It's Made

The production process in a nutshell: in the exhibition Hoe het Gemaakt Wordt we show the production process of leather and shoes using historical machines and contemporary interactives. In short videos, Dutch shoe designers talk about their sources of inspiration, working methods or their passion for shoes and materials.


The years 1960-'70 heralded the downfall of the leather and shoe industry in the Langstraat. Numerous tanneries and shoe factories closed their doors as a result of heavy competition from so-called low-wage countries. Many machines, which had been in use for decades, found their way to the museum collection. Special machines and machines with which a special operation can be carried out form the basis for a brief explanation of the process of making leather and shoes.


The machines are set up in a modern museum design, which further emphasizes their uniqueness. In the design corner and stitching room visitors can make their own shoe design by means of specially developed interactives, stitch shoes virtually or experience how complicated it is to make a shoe pattern. An exploded shoe shows how many, often invisible, parts a shoe can consist of.


The future is illuminated through the table of materials, which occupies a prominent place in this exhibition. Today, consumers are increasingly asking for more sustainable and animal-friendly alternatives to both plastics and leather. Recycling and upcycling of materials are important steps in this process. Bio-designers are looking for new materials that are biodegradable but can still match the special properties of leather. Special, new materials are refreshed regularly so that visitors can keep up with developments in sustainability and design.

In 27 steps, you are taken through the making of a pair of shoes from the tanning process onwards.

The semi-permanent exhibition How It's Made offers a fascinating glimpse into the world of leather and shoe production Then, Now and Later. In 27 steps, visitors are taken through the making of a pair of shoes starting from the tanning process.