In this modern age of factory-produced disposable goods, a sturdy handmade item that is built to be beautiful, worn, and maintained is rare.
Daphne Board became a custom shoemaker in 2001, and a certified pedorthist in 2014. Drawing design inspiration from early 20th century styles, Daphne makes everyday fine footwear in the bespoke shoemaking tradition. This allows for every detail of the shoe be considered via an initial measurements/style discussion session, sketching of design ideas, creation of mock-up/fitter shoes, and the making of the final footwear. The final product is the realization of a thoughtful process that responds to the wishes of the client, and is intended to be worn, carefully maintained and repaired.
In 2013, she exhibited work as a part of “In These Shoes: Bespoke Footwear in America” in Dubuque, Iowa and Holyoke, Massachusetts. In 2014, she was a Traditional Arts Finalist in the 2014 Artist Fellowships Program of the Massachusetts Cultural Council and in 2018 was a Crafts Finalist in the 2018 AFP of the MCC. In 2017 and 2018, Daphne’s shoes were on display in Brooklyn, NY at Brooklyn Shoe Space, in Hartford, Ct, at the Connecticut Historical Society’s Southern New England Arts Apprenticeship Program 20th anniversary exhibit, and at the Wistariahurst Museum's Homespun exhibit. In 2021, Daphne was awarded an Artist Fellowship in Crafts from the Mass Cultural Council.
The studio is in Holyoke, Western Massachusetts, a former industrial city full of old brick paper mills and a hydroelectric canal system. Holyoke is halfway between NYC and Boston–the best of all worlds in the beautiful Pioneer Valley.
Daphne is a certified pedorthist through BOC International.