Here are five tips for commissioning bespoke shoes:
- Buy a staple shoe in a conservative color. Your first shoes should probably be a black cap-toe oxford or brown shoe.
- Study different types of shoes and know all your order specifications prior to the visit — if you’re going to spend that much money on a pair of shoes, definitely do the research.
- Wear the trial shoes for at least a month — some shoemakers make only a rudimentary shoe with a glued heel, but I would push them to make a wearable pair that could be worn and tested. Only then can you assess crucial fit points, such as the heel and toes.
- If the shoes have fit issues, send them back (yes, even the final pair) — this applies to tailoring and shoes. If you ordered a bespoke item, you deserve a comfortable fit, even if it takes the maker time to revise. My Levis were re-made three times. Clothing or shoes should be wearable.
- Your first shoe will not be perfect — you will learn many lessons from ordering your first pair and will most likely have to keep perfecting your last with subsequent orders.
This list goes on, but five will do for now.