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  • tapgrrl 7:03 pm on March 25, 2020 Permalink | Reply  

    A New Tapgrrl!!!! 

    As most of you know, I haven’t been posting here lately (and I know I owe at least one person a post of photos he sent me), but I could not resist this post.  I began this blog hoping to find other women/girls who put metal taps on their shoes.  We are a rare breed!

    But lately I’ve had some back and forth emails with a woman from Arizona who bought a pair of boots (really nice tall leather boots with a chunk heel) and wanted to keep the bottoms in good shape.  I suggested the Arizona dealer who sells horseshoe taps, but he didn’t have small enough ones, she said.  But she found a pair of horseshoe taps on ebay and also got smaller ones for the soles.  She attached them all herself, too!  Side taps, too!!!

    Lilith is her name and I hope she’ll post something about herself, but she sent me photos of her boots which I’m posting below.  Another tapgrrl in horseshoe taps!!! Like me!!!

     

    20200323_182303 copy

    20200323_182247 copy

    20200323_182228 copy

     
    • mr. ed 9:45 pm on March 25, 2020 Permalink | Reply

      Glad to see you are back. All the best thru these times. Alot has changed for blogging sites.Going forward you may want to consider others for visibility. No one visits Word Press/Tumblr nowadays. Both are in serious decline.

    • tapmut 2:20 am on March 26, 2020 Permalink | Reply

      I like ’em. Interesting tap arrangement….I wonder why it didn’t occur to me…but it’s not too late to try it out or something similar…especially with lots of time at home these days.

      • Anonymous 5:11 pm on June 1, 2020 Permalink | Reply

        after wearing them for a while the side ones i should have but slightly more back but ya

        • lilith 5:12 pm on June 1, 2020 Permalink | Reply

          that was my lilith forgot to add the name

          • tapgrrl 12:07 am on June 2, 2020 Permalink

            Lilith, if you want to add another small pair of taps just behind the side taps you have on, I can send you a pair that you could glue on. Let me know.

    • lilith 12:12 pm on March 27, 2020 Permalink | Reply

      ello im the owner of theses boots they are freebirds i liked them and they were way over my price range so ya and questions feel free to ask

      • tapplate03 11:32 pm on May 10, 2020 Permalink | Reply

        Interesting how you did these, Lilith. I’m doing things with shoe taps now.

        • lilith 2:16 am on May 11, 2020 Permalink | Reply

          the heels i just held them with my thighs as hard as i could and some pliers to hold the nails steady as i hammered them in the toe taps shoe glue and seems to be holding so far

    • lilith 8:08 pm on March 29, 2020 Permalink | Reply

      ok idk if this will work but for if there are other girls this is the listing for the horse shoes cuz its the smallest i found

      https://www.ebay.com/itm/1-PAIR-METAL-SHOE-BOOT-HEEL-PLATES-ARMY-RIM-HORSESHOE-NAILS-5-sizes/220940930205?ssPageName=STRK%3AMEBIDX%3AIT&var=520065922652&_trksid=p2057872.m2749.l2649

    • tapgrrl 8:14 pm on March 29, 2020 Permalink | Reply

      The link was fine. Thanks! I do have some smaller ones if you ever need another pair! 🙂 Maybe on some loafers? Did you get the smaller taps at the same place?

      • lilith 2:57 pm on March 30, 2020 Permalink | Reply

        i got the smallest they had and as you can see they were still slightly big or at least i had wanted a little bit of a gap then again this is the shortest heel on a shoe iv worn anyways so idk why that matters but ya

        i might take you up on that offer sometime depending if i get some new shoes

    • danny 6:27 pm on July 17, 2020 Permalink | Reply

      Oh cool! Heel plates AND toe plates!
      I never see people wear those in Canada.
      I was actually looking into making a pair of heel plates and toe plates out of some aluminum plates for my boots, What do you think?
      what’s your opinion between steel plates and aluminum in regards of characteristics and durability?
      One of my concerns is striking a hard surface with a steel plate and starting a fire at a petrol system.

      • mark12547 6:32 pm on July 21, 2020 Permalink | Reply

        There is a definite spark risk if one has metal on one’s heels and is walking on certain surfaces like concrete, rock, tile, or asphalt, and sparks could potentially ignite flammable gas or flammable liquids. So if you work in such an environment, metal on the heels is not recommended.

    • John 2:17 pm on August 10, 2020 Permalink | Reply

      I mix steel horseshoes and aluminum dance taps (in the U of the horseshoe) on my boot heels.

  • mark12547 9:55 am on September 9, 2018 Permalink | Reply  

    Tonight (Sept. 9, 2018) Lifetime is showing a new “The Bad Seed”. I have no idea if this modernized version will have shoes with taps be the weapon, but I plan on finding out tonight.

     
    • mark12547 10:59 pm on September 9, 2018 Permalink | Reply

      I’m just a short way into the movie, but it appears that no taps were involved. 😦

      (Now if they had modernized it to take place on Texas A&M University and had lots of seniors wearing their boots with the horseshoe taps …)

    • tapgrrl 6:41 pm on September 10, 2018 Permalink | Reply

      So when you reached the end of the movie, any taps? What did they replace that weapon with? Still a little blonde girl?

      • mark12547 9:59 pm on September 10, 2018 Permalink | Reply

        No taps.

        I didn’t notice the color of her hair.

        Weapons: a push off a cliff (for the boy with the medal), natural gas filling the house with the electric stove on as a source of explosive ignition, drugged hot chocolate, a pistol, a hornet’s nest placed in a car, locked in a room with flammable liquids and a match, a drowning, a fall off the stairs. Not all of these were successful.

        Overall, it was an ok movie (not great, but I found it quite watchable), a thriller, a “film noir”. I liked it a bit more than the original, except, of course, the missing taps. Also missing was any hint on why it was called “The Bad Seed” (at least I don’t recall any mention of any of the girl’s ancestors being a murderer).

      • mark12547 12:49 am on October 19, 2018 Permalink | Reply

        For taps though, but on boots, you can look at http://www.hotboots.com/bol/ and scroll all the way down to “College Football” and many pictures of the A&M Senior Boots show taps.

        But they have nothing to do with The Bad Seed. 🙂

        • mark12547 4:59 am on October 23, 2018 Permalink | Reply

          The thread “College Football” has scrolled into the “archive” of Hotboots. To view those messages, including the pictures A&M Senior Boots with horseshoe heel plates, go to http://www.hotboots.com/bol/archive/ and search for college football in the first blank, 2018 in the second blank.

    • mark12547 2:39 pm on February 11, 2019 Permalink | Reply

      The 1956 make of “The Bad Seed” is scheduled to air on TCM (Turner Classic Movies) this coming Friday, February 15, 2019, at 2:30pm Pacific / 5:30pm Eastern. This is the one with the taps.

  • tapgrrl 7:56 pm on June 27, 2018 Permalink | Reply  

    Boots, shoes, and taps photos and stories from a follower 

    I’ve been emailing with a viewer on this blog who, over the years has sent me photos of boots (mainly) that he’s put taps on.  I’ve posted a few before but I forget which so here’s the whole set.  Plus below the photos is a long personal history he sent about his interest in boots and taps.  Enjoy.

     

    Here’s his story:

    A Tale of Taps

    When I was a kid, I could get a package of crescent taps at the Woolworth five-and-dime store on Grand River Avenue, near Southfield Drive, not too far from where I lived in Detroit. And of course shoe repair shops had them, too.

    Some of the more “daring” kids – the boys, not the girls – in my grade school bought them and hammered them onto the heels of their shoes. The click-chick-clicking sound they made on the terrazzo hallways in school were rather alluring. I got myself a pair and attached them to my brown and very boring Boy Scout shoes. They changed the way I walked.

    When I felt bold and brash, I could scrape my heels on the sidewalk and create a half-way decent racket. When I felt more withdrawn, I could walk on the sides of my heels and not make much of a sound at all. At other times, I could enjoy the simple click, click, clicking as I walked along.

    I remember one morning on my way to Sunday school. I was walking with a couple of friends and I thought they might tease me about my taps, so I simply moved off the sidewalk onto the grass. No click, click, click. But a little weird, as I kicked up quite a spray from the morning dew.

    One day – perhaps when I was in the seventh grade – I was on my knees at the back of the classroom looking for some books in a bookcase. One of the girls saw the heels of my shoes. “What big taps you have,” she said. I took that as a wonderful compliment.

    I only had a pair or two of shoes with taps when I was in grade school and high school. In college, I think I was tap free. But after college, I found that proper business attire included well-polished shoes with a little triangular metal tab on the edge of each heel. The sound wasn’t nearly as robust as it was with my earlier crescent taps, but it was still a muted click click. Better than nothing!

    One pair of business shoes I bought didn’t have any metal at all, just a round plastic peg near the edge of each heel. An interesting change of pace, but with no significant sound value whatsoever.

    I found that as my tap focus faded somewhat, my interest in shoes accelerated. I liked different styles – unique shoes and boots, something out of the ordinary. And I guess that’s when I began to take an interest in putting together a collection of shoes. It started very slowly, but ramped up as the decades drifted by.

    I remember one time in Kingston, New York (where I was working at the time). I was in a shoe store looking around (as I liked to do) and I found a pair of shoes with 3/4-inch platforms and probably 2-inch heels. The shoes were wild and wonderful and definitely out of the ordinary. I wanted to buy them, but then I thought: No! I’m way too old to buy these shoes. Maybe if I was twenty years younger I could get them. It’s just not right for me with job, home, and family responsibilities to make such a frivolous purchase. I have a reputation to uphold. I can’t be seen walking around in a pair of shoes that might look okay for some bopper to be wearing on TV. I have to be respectable. I have to be dignified. I have to be refined.

    I bought them anyway.

    And I enjoyed them. A lot. But I felt somewhat embarrassed. After all, I had disregarded all my sound and reasonable objections. I had let my feelings reign over my common sense.

    And I installed a fine pair of crescent taps to the heels. Probably Eagle 5s.

    I wore the shoes to a meeting in Canada. It wasn’t a business meeting. It was a casual gathering, so I thought my new shoes wouldn’t garner too much attention.

    As it turned out, I was called up on stage in front of everyone. Across the wooden stage I walked: click, click, click! It was a very loud CLICK, CLICK, CLICK. There was no hiding. My taps screamed out for one and all to look at my crazy new shoes! I wished the stage had a strip of grass on it.

    On another trip to Canada, this time with several friends, I wore the same shoes. Going through Immigration Control, I was pulled out of line and taken to a special room for questioning. I guess my shoes identified me as some kind of risk to the whole Canadian country! After a fairly brief interrogation, I returned to my friends, who were waiting for me in Reception. Yes, the ribbing lasted throughout our visit.

    At work in Kingston, there was one other guy (that I knew of) who had taps on his shoes. His name was Lloyd. He had taps on his heels and on the toes of his shoes. I thought that was a little over the top. Taps belong on heels, not on the front of the soles. I thought it was overkill. I thought it was silly. I didn’t like it. At all.

    To moderate and control somewhat the sound of my taps, I found I could countersink them ever so slightly into the heels. To do that, I outlined them in pencil in the proper location on each heel, then used a router to remove enough material so the tap would sit flush with the rest of the heel. Then, I could position my foot to either engage the tap or not as situations demanded. Sort of like having my cake and eating it, too.

    I had taps on the heels of the loafers I wore to work. One day when a bunch of us in our department headed out for lunch, I slipped in the stairway and almost slid down a whole flight of stairs. Fortunately, I was able to grab and hold onto the railing and prevent a full headlong plunge, but it was a serious embarrassment – right in front of my office mates. There was one and only one reason for my misstep: my taps.

    For some reason, such episodes did not sour my liking for taps.

    One time on a trip with my brother, he objected to the sound my taps were making. I didn’t think they were that loud, but he objected. Strongly. He said he wanted to walk behind me so he wouldn’t be associated with the clicking. He said I should never wear shoes with taps in his presence.

    So, that made me think: If brother Jim was so offended by a little click, click, clicking, how were others reacting to these sounds? Were they similarly displeased? Or were they okay with the noise-making going on? Or did they have any reaction at all?

    I made a number of business trips over the years to a number of countries, and if I had the time and was able, I tried to search out a shoe store to visit. I bought a pair or black boots and a pair of brown boots in London (during two trips there). Then I installed taps on each pair.

    I got a pair of suede boots in Sydney, Australia, then added taps when I got home. I’ve since tried two or three different kinds of taps for these.

    When I visited Thailand, I bought two pairs of ankle boots. Unfortunately, they’re now gone.

    As more years slipped by, I found my interest in shoes and taps continue to rise. My shoe collection was growing and I attached taps on heels wherever I could.

    Usually, taps work well with leather heels and not so well with rubber heels. Rubber tends to mute the sound and make it tinny and wimpy. Nonetheless, I put taps on some shoes with crape heels and even on some sneakers with reasonable success. But some shoes simply defy tap attachment. The resulting sound is rather unpleasant.

    Long ago, I found that shoe stores were usually the worst place to look for interesting and fun shoes. Most people want what’s more common, what’s more mundane, what’s for me completely uninteresting. But stores must cater to where the most business is, not to where my strange tastes lie.

    I’ve found the Internet offers a broad and often satisfying selection of shoes and boots for purchase. I spend more time than I should searching from website to website. I’ve made footwear purchases on-line from the UK, Spain, Mexico, Japan, and China, maybe elsewhere. And I am generally pleased with my purchases.

    Not so, however, with my dealings with China. I’ve been ripped off three times by China companies. Once when my money was taken, but I never received what I ordered. Two times when the businesses sent me something other than what I wanted. And they refused to give me a refund or allow me to return the shoes. Recommendation: don’t buy from China! Sometimes it’s hard to know you’re dealing with a China business because many Chinese websites are designed to hide that fact.

    I did run across a great shoe store in Miami a bunch of years ago at the Bayside Marketplace. I was mesmerized by the selection of New Rock shoes and boots on display. I had never seen the New Rock line before. I gazed at them for some time, then finally made a selection. The salesman wrapped up the shoes I was wearing so I could wear what I had just purchased. I was feeling mighty fine!

    I walked around the shopping center so others could appreciate my fine taste in footwear. I paused at a spot where I could look out at the bay. Seagulls were circling about high above me. A few landed just overhead. The thought came to mind that the birds might wish to relieve themselves. It was just a half-second or so after the same thought occurred to the birds.

    I was standing directly under them and I thought I’d get a good splattering on my head. Or my shoulder. Or an arm. Nope. Those clever birds timed things so their “gift” missed my head, and my shoulders, and my arms, and made a direct hit on my brand new shoes!

    It was an unwanted christening. The birds were totally indifferent to the horror they had created. I retreated to the mens’ room for a little cleanup.

    On the way back to my car, I paused for traffic to pass so I could cross a street. One driver had her window open as she drove by. “Nice shoes!” she yelled at me. My purchase decision was confirmed.

    I guess it has been five to ten years ago now that I first came across a website hosted by “Tapgrrl.” I enjoyed reading some of the writings and looking at some of the photographs of taps on shoes. But Tapgrrl is corrupting. She is! And I’ve been corrupted. Mightily corrupted.

    I saw some pictures of shoes with horseshoe taps. I hadn’t come across horseshoe taps before. I was intrigued. They looked mean. They looked intriguing. They looked terrific. I thought: I must get some horseshoe taps. And I did.

    I found a couple pairs of shoes in my closet were fine candidates for crescent-to-horseshoe tap transplants and I completed the operations. The horseshoe taps were dandy. They were great! Taps give a “click.” Horseshoe taps give a “clickity-click.”

    Lots of photos on Tapgrrl’s website showed taps on the front edges of soles. I thought that just wasn’t right. But then I thought: Maybe I should give it a try anyway. And I did. And I surprised myself by liking the result.

    Yes, I’ve been thoroughly corrupted. I thought toe taps were silly, but now I’m a fan. I’m a believer. I thought crescent taps were the entire universe. Now I’ve found there’s a horseshoe dimension I never knew existed. Tapgrrl has exposed me to a whole family of tap-wise, tap-wearing, tap-proud people roaming around enjoying the simple pleasure of the sound of taps. (Not from a bugle.)

     
    • blakeync 11:23 am on June 29, 2018 Permalink | Reply

      Thanks for the great pictures and for the detailed history of an interest in taps that got involved and better and better. Would be great to actually hear them.

  • tapgrrl 4:38 pm on March 17, 2018 Permalink | Reply  

    More from Mr. Ed–horseshoe plates this time 

    Here’s two sets of photos sent to me by Mr. Ed.  The first is of a pair of burnt-orange Flagg Brothers front buckle boots from 1969-1970-before I was born!–flat heeled and tall.  Nicely large horseshoes! 

    The second is a pair of recent shorty Western boots with, he says, 3 3/4″ heels!  Wow!

     

    NO TOE TAPS?  Or side taps either.  Well we all have room for improvement, don’t we?  Thanks, Ed., for sending them to me so I could post them.

     
    • Ed 6:49 pm on March 17, 2018 Permalink | Reply

      Sorry I just do the side or front taps. Things sometimes are slippery enough as it is. Gotta dig out some beatle boots and others for next time.

  • tapgrrl 8:07 pm on March 8, 2018 Permalink | Reply  

    3rd pair of taps on these boots 

    Photos from Mr. Ed, who may be a “lurker” on the site.  Welcome, Mr. Ed.  Write some more as a comment to this post about your history of wearing taps and anything else tap-related you’d like to share.

     
    • Ed 10:12 pm on March 8, 2018 Permalink | Reply

      These are a pair of boots from ebay that had holes where the taps used to be.Now on my 3rd pair size 6 taps. These were loud as hell without the taps. Sound loud and proud on a marble type floor with these boots. Love scraping on a newer sidewalk. Note carbon discoloration from taps on heels. This is my current in use winter boots As a child of the 60’s I grew up with these. I dare you not to get aroused when you hear these bad ass boots come your way. Got more pics {beatle boots flag bros} and more current to post. I have wide range of horseshoe and cast iron taps. Due to Nor’easter my internet is hit and miss here on Long Island. I will post soon.

    • Blake 10:42 am on March 9, 2018 Permalink | Reply

      Sounds like we are of the same vintage growing up in the 60’s. Will be great to see your additional photos. Going to post any videos on youtube so we can hear them?

    • Ed 10:33 am on March 10, 2018 Permalink | Reply

      Doing a video will be limited everything here is carpeted. Maybe the tiny bathroom though; stone tiles, I can give some sound effects. I grew up around Flag Brothers boots. Even without taps the heels on them were always very loud. Have 2 pair of brown boots from Flag. One with gold buckles, one without. Got on E-bay. haven’t set them up yet. Have a pair of Kinney boots; a look a like to the flag with buckles with horse shoe taps. And a pair couple pairs more modern beatle boots set up with taps among others. Will try to do more pics next week. I collected boots til I ran out of room. There other surprises I will dig out.

  • tapgrrl 11:00 pm on March 5, 2018 Permalink | Reply  

    Banana taps? Never saw those! 

    Blake sent these photos of two pairs of his oxfords. One of them is titled “banana plates”. I never saw that shape before.

     
  • tapgrrl 9:16 pm on March 1, 2018 Permalink | Reply  

    Tapnut–Are his shoes the “last taps standing”? 

    I received another set of photos from Tapnut: Some nifty penny loafers with double-thick horseshoes, #8 toe taps, and FOUR side-taps on each shoe, every hole inserted with screws. But it’s been many months, probably over a year, since anyone else has shown me taps on their shoes or boots and it might be that long since I’ve applied taps to shoes–mainly because I’ve not bought any shoes lately!

    If anyone else has photos they want posted on this site, just send them to me–tapgrrl@gmail.com. I’d particularly like to see some well-worn taps–not too well worn, just evidencing some substantial public exposure.

    Here is Tapnut’s fine creation. I’ll leave it to him to comment on why he chose this setup and how he likes them.

     
    • John F Tublewicz 11:21 am on March 2, 2018 Permalink | Reply

      I had big taps on the heel of my gator boots but removed them I came into a room with terrazzo floors and my boot slide out from under me I didn’t get hurt but I wonder how some people can live with so many taps

  • tapgrrl 10:00 pm on December 3, 2017 Permalink | Reply  

    Awesome Tassle Loafers 

    A year ago Tapnut 2 (I believe that’s what he identifies himself as here) sent me photos of some loafers he tapped up and I neglected to post them as he gently reminded me this week. They are awesome with double horseshoes that look like double-thick single horseshoes–no space between them–as well as a nifty outer ring of metal that he crafted from silver bracelets. Also nice-sized side taps and large toe taps. I want some! Here’s more of what he wrote about them: “For some time, I been looking for other metal treatments…
    The metal band on the heel was the best I could come up with this time.
    I haven’t noticed a problem with side taps, so far…perhaps it’s because my soles are a little thicker.
    But I am a bit concerned with my latest creation because their size may restrict toe flex.
    I use #4 flat head wood screws….available at larger home depots.
    I use 3/8″ for sole taps….they don’t poke through the sole…even my thinish soles.
    For the heels, I use 5/8″ or 3/4″.
    In both cases, I have to drill out the holes in the plates for the screws to penetrate.
    Then I have to countersink the holes too so the screws will at least be flush with the plate.
    Use a carbide-tipped countersink on a power drill.
    For the sole taps, an ice pick is sufficient to get the screws started,
    But on hard heels, I usually have to make a pilot hole.
    And yes, I use screws to get a solid attachment and identical sound.”

    Here’s his pics:

     
    • Blake 10:54 am on December 4, 2017 Permalink | Reply

      These look awesome and are so artfully crafted. Would be wonderful to hear the sound they make, but they look unworn at present. Pristine!

  • mark12547 4:29 pm on November 9, 2017 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: Heavy boots with horseshes, toe bumpers for sale   

    I came across a pointer to some pretty massive and “enhanced” boots on eBay: https://www.ebay.com/itm/272919543121

    With double horseshoe heel pates, toe bumpers, side plates, everyone would know when you arrived!

     
    • Ed 12:49 pm on November 12, 2017 Permalink | Reply

      Have 2 pair of Beatwear Beatle boots with horseshoe taps on the 21/2″ heels. Loud as hell. Have attracted alot of attention from people who love how nasty my black suede boots look and sound. I always start to scrape my heels as I talk to them, before I let them have a look at the taps. Got the boots and boxes of taps on Ebay

    • Blake-NC 9:45 am on November 20, 2017 Permalink | Reply

      They must sound great! Nice you have some interested in seeing the taps after they hear them.

    • mark12547 4:02 pm on December 13, 2017 Permalink | Reply

      More boots enhanced with metal: https://www.ebay.com/itm/192396915004

      Enhancements most visible include horseshoe heel plates and the metal toe protectors that some motorcycle boots have.

      @tapgrrl: It may be nice to grab pictures to add to the collection here.

  • tapgrrl 9:32 pm on September 21, 2017 Permalink | Reply  

    Wowsy! Horseshoe taps stacked HIGH plus toe bumpers sticking straight out and hobnails 

    Alright I’ve given away everything significant about these boots in the title but you might want to have a look at the 10+ photos now on ebay:
    http://www.ebay.com/itm/Gladiator-Boots-Custom-Taps-Heel-Plates-Added-UK-7-US-8-Steel-Toe-Lifted-Cleated-/142514018601
    Here’s one photo for you:

     
    • Tapnut 1:36 pm on September 22, 2017 Permalink | Reply

      The toe bumpers are a bit much!

      • mark12547 3:27 pm on September 23, 2017 Permalink | Reply

        Those toe bumpers don’t look like they were a good fit, hanging out with the two holes closest to the flange being unused. A more conventional toe plate would have been better in this case if the owner didn’t want to remove any of the hobnails.

        • mark 9:33 am on April 3, 2018 Permalink | Reply

          where can these toe bumpers be found?

          • tapgrrl 9:33 pm on April 3, 2018 Permalink

            It takes a lot of perseverence. I kept looking for them on ebay, generally searching in the categories of “shoe accessories” and “shoe care and repair” and finally found a collection of about 5 pair, as I recall, which are now on 4 pairs of boots and my saddle shoes. I doubt if any shoe repair place has them any more.

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