Brands, mills, artisans, and customers amidst Covid-19 have additional hurdles to cross. Trunk shows have been cancelled and stores/mills closed. Some ateliers have ceased production altogether. Luckily, some artisans can work from home, with plenty of orders to tackle. Some countries are on partial or full lockdown. For sartorialists, this temporarily includes China, the UK, … Continue reading Shipping During Covid-19
For those ready to consider footwear beyond made-to-order (MTO) and ready-to-wear shoes (RTW) , made-to-measure (MTM) and bespoke shoes are the next step. The major difference between made-to-measure and bespoke shoes is that MTM shoes are created from a base last. That last is not made from scratch. It was not created to suit your … Continue reading Differences Between MTM and Bespoke Shoes
My obsession for the last two years has been searching for the perfect almond-toe Japanese shoe. A lot of shoemakers use sharp angles or too-round proportions. That's just their style. Han. Shoemaker at Atelier Rikka doesn't make shoes in crazy styles or colors, at least on his Instagram. The designs are simple. I wanted something … Continue reading Han. Shoemaker – Beautiful Almond-toe Shoes
I wish better language existed to describe the exact shape and style of a shoe. It's simply not enough use the word "style," because style can also encapsulate the patina, finish, and other characteristics of a shoe besides shape. Shoemakers use words like "almond" and "chiseled" to describe toe shapes, but we need better vocabulary … Continue reading The Shape of Shoes
They take the cake when it comes to shoemaking. Compared to their European counterparts, Japanese shoemakers are galaxies above when it comes to finishing, detail, and aesthetics. Among my favorites are Yasuhiro Shiota, Hiro Yanagimachi, TYE shoemaker, Yuigo Hayano (Bespoke Shoe Works), and Eiji Murata (Main d'Or). Many other makers with attention to detail exist … Continue reading Japanese Bespoke Shoemakers
100% yes. I pose this question because this was something I foolishly asked myself before I even learned custom shoemaking. Generally speaking, the majority of shoemakers are overwhelmingly male. There may be a few female upper-makers here and there, but the numbers leave much to be desired. That being said there are, I'm sure many … Continue reading Can Women Be Shoemakers?
For me, a shoemaker is someone who can construct a pair of shoes from scratch. This means that given a wooden last, a shoemaker can properly construct a pattern, sew the uppers, last the shoe, and build the bottom. Some may argue that truly excellent shoemakers make lasts themselves, which requires an additional set of … Continue reading What Makes a Shoemaker?
Hiro Yanagimachi visited the United States a second time this April, accompanied by bottom-maker Shunsuke Moriyama. Leffot in New York hosted this trunk show. A few months prior, I began a correspondence with Hiro. I told him I appreciated his shoes, and he invited me to have a conversation with him in New York. So … Continue reading Hiro Yanagimachi’s 2nd NYC Trunk Show