If you have ever watched a fixer upper show, you know that some people have a creative eye for renovating homes that are in poor condition. I am not one of those people who has the “eye” for a home renovation. I do, however, have this skill when it comes to envisioning how a worn out pair of Birkenstocks would look after a recraft.
Sometimes when I am scrolling through used Birkenstock listings on Poshmark or eBay, I come across a pair of completely dilapidated Birks that I cannot pass up. To most people, they would scroll past such a listing and look for something that is not falling apart. But for me, when I see a unique pair of leather Birkenstocks, that appear to be in total disrepair, something draws me in.
I can look past the cracked cork, the uppers that are peeling away from the footbed, or the sole that has worn through to the cork. If the Birks are authentic, the uppers are unique and leather, and the buckles are in good shape, then I have to have them. It’s like finding a diamond in the rough! I like having uncommon Birkenstocks because that is what makes Gina Mama, Gina Mama.
When I came across these two pairs of Gizehs on Poshmark, I knew, immediately, that they needed to be added to my collection.
The bedazzled Gizehs were an extraordinary find!! I realize, that Birkenstock will be releasing sandals this season, and next, with rivets. But, none of those Birkenstocks have diamond like gems and star bling. The stars on these Gizehs reminded me of my Grandma (another blog) and I had to have them.
As for the pair on the right.....Red. Leather. Gizehs. Need I say more?
Unique. Rare. Awesome. There is no sacrificing here.
Guess how much I paid for these Birkenstocks? Now, I realize, that for some of my readers, the answer might be “too much!”. However, for those of you with an artistic eye, you will agree, that I got these for a steal. I only paid $20!! Whaaat?? For leather Birkenstocks?!
This is a true bargain despite their appearance. Once I get these recrafted, they will be brand spanking new. Plus, in my opinion, they will be priceless since no one else will have them!
For recrafting, I decided to send these Birkenstocks to Michelangelo, at Michelangelo's Foot Comfort & Pedorthic Shoppe because he specializes in Custom Made Birkenstocks. (I mean, who amongst us doesn’t want to commission something artistic from Michelangelo?) Michelangelo had emailed me after coming across my webpage. I learned that Michelangelo is a licensed and certified pedorthist.
What is a pedorthist? A pedorthist is a professional who has specialized training to modify footwear and employ supportive devices to address conditions which affect the feet and lower limbs. Michelangelo is also a certified orthotic fitter. Plus, his business is a certified Birkenstock repair center, as I confirmed via Birkenstock USA’s web site.
What intrigued me is that Michelangelo does more than just repairs and recrafts. Michelangelo's website states that he “can make your old Birkenstocks look like new again. We can heel you and save your sole. Repairs available on Birkenstocks: Heels, Soles, Lifts, New Foot Beds, Rockersoles, New Straps (whole or partial). You name it and I am sure we can do it. We can even do Golf Soles on Birkenstocks!” I might need to get my husband a pair of Birkenstocks with golf soles.
When I contacted Michelangelo about recrafting my Gizehs, he was extremely professional and responsive to my inquiries. My questions were answered promptly and honestly. When I sent my Birkenstocks to Michelangelo, he only had one pair of 38 regular footbeds in stock. He mentioned that it would take a few extra days to recraft because he needed to order another pair of footbeds from Birkenstock USA. He kept me informed about the status of the footbed order throughout the entire process.
Michelangelo is not only a skilled pedorthist who can work wonders on a pair of Birkenstocks, he also has a great sense of humor. Like when he fooled me with some Birkenstock humor. He asked me what color soles I wanted on each pair. He asked, “did you want the light black, dark black or medium black soles?”
Tough question. I had to think about it. I knew that Birkenstock has a rainbow of colors when it comes to soles. But, did they have different color black soles? Was I not familiar with the terminology of the variety of dark sole colors? He had me going there.
I answered, for the “Red Gizehs I would like dark black. Pearl Gizehs light black or dark brown”. I am sure he had a good laugh at my answer because I fell for his joke. After I replied, he told me that Birkenstock only makes one color black sole!!!
Here is what the Birkenstocks looked like when I sent them to Michelangelo:
Bedazzled Birkenstock Gizehs (before)
Red Leather Gizehs (before)
Here is what the Birkenstocks looked like after Michelangelo’s recraft:
Bedazzled Birkenstock Gizehs (after)
Red Leather Gizehs (after)
These recrafts turned out to be amazing. Michelangelo is truly an artist when it comes to Birkenstock repair work. Let's compare the before and after images:
I am so satisfied with Michelangelo’s work, I am wondering if I might need to order a custom made pair of Birkenstocks. To learn about the type of Birkenstock and Tatami sandals that he can customize, please refer to Michelangelo's web site. Michelangelo states that he “can make almost any type of Birkenstock…Unlike the other guys who market custom made Birkenstock sandals, we have the ability to obtain any Birkenstock sandal, take it apart and reassemble it just for you! The other guys only make styles that are available as parts from Birkenstock USA”. For a Birkenstock connoisseur like myself, such possibilities are endless and this offer is very intriguing.
If you are in the market for Custom Made Birkenstocks, a Birkenstock repair or recraft, or other unique footwear solutions, I highly recommend that you try Michelangelo's Foot Comfort & Pedorthic Shoppe on for size.
TIP: Want more information about recrafting? If so, please click here to read my original blog on the topic.
Birkenstock blogger since 2016.