September Had Many Surprises
Somehow we are already entering October. In the blink of an eye we are already in the final 3 months of 2020 somehow. Anyways, this also means that it is time for the September 2020 version of our Welted Shoe News Series.
A very eventful and diverse month with both good and bad news. From the closure of the new Foster & Son’s factory in Northampton to helping you avoid Scammers and the latest collection drops, I got it all!
Let’s get this party started!
Scammer Of The Month
And of course we kick start the news with yet another scumbag seller from the southern parts of Asia.
Right out of Pakistan we have Avio Boots. The scumbag that runs this account claims they will make your “handmade” shoes in 15 days and deliver them to your door.
Not only that, but they steal pictures from every legit shoemaker including mine and post them as their own. To add insult to the injury they put shocking descriptions and brand them as their own.
Since they removed my picture after reporting them here is an example of them using a picture from AFPOS.
Do not (and I mean DO NOT) buy or contact any of these sellers ever. You will NOT receive any shoes and IF you do this is how they will most likely look.
This is the most shocking shoe I have seen in a while. If you notice anyone attempting to copy or sell famous shoes please email me or comment with the link so I can out them here!
Vekla Sneakers Are Here
While this is not inherently welted footwear news it still deserves a spot. Because Vekla is the brand of my friend Tom that also runs Sons of Henrey. He specializes in some awesome MTO shoes and recently he launched his own separate brand to make sneakers.
I already covered the launch back in the day (Read Here) but now the first drops arrived. Response was terrific and in fact I hope I can get my hands on them and do a review.
Great materials, thoughtful construction and a superb price for just around $200. I would definitely get a navy or brown suede pair.
Make sure to check them out!
Foster & Son Factory Closure?
My first encounter with Foster & Son was in the Stockholm Trunk Show 2019 through Skomaker Dagestad. They were nice people with high end British shoes. On the 25th of October 2018 they opened a brand new factory in Northampton which was the first after 2006 to make their RTW line.
A frequent reader of Styleforum, I stumbled upon this post (Link Here) which apparently says that Foster & Son closed down their factory on the 14th of September. Gaziano & Girling absorbed 2 of their workers but 14 people lost their jobs.
Pretty sure the competitiveness of the market and Covid played their role but it is still very sad to see. The information comes from a person that looks like to be the Asian Rep for Gaziano & Girling however since there is no official confirmation or announcement take this with a grain of salt.
A Tribute To Chadwick Boseman
In a really nice move (or is it commercial? It is a very fine line), Acme Shoemaker released a Black Panther Tribute Seamless Black Wholecut. For those of you unaware, Chadwick Boseman was a great actor that recently passed away from Stage 4 Colon Cancer. I can greatly relate since this is the type of cancer my mom is currently fight although not that advanced. He was also the leading actor for Marvel’s Black Panther and it is a huge loss for everyone including us that love the MCU.
Acme Shoemaker is a high end Chinese Brand from Bejiing that makes really expensive shoes. This is a nice touch and an absolute stunner of a shoe. Seamless wholecut oxfords require skill, precision and typically cost much more than usual.
Chadwick seemed to be a great person and actor. All the best to his family.
The Name’s Bond, Commercial Bond
Movies are a great way for companies to promote product placement. James Bond has been one of the most important exports of Britain since the 60’s and as the titular super spy it would be rather ridiculous if he didn’t wear British Shoes.
Crockett & Jones is the one tasked with dressing Daniel Craig and with the upcoming release of “No Time To Die” on November 12th released their promotional campaign models.
A limited edition wholecut by the name of James in Black calf and on the 348 Last. It includes black lasted shoe trees with the 007 Logo and is from the Handgrade Line for £850.
There is also the Molton Chukka and Highbury Derby from the Benchgrade Range in this limited edition release. I personally think that you can buy something much better for £850 and it rides the name but it might be great for some people.
Find the James Bond Collection Here.
New Brand From House Of Agin | Mattina Shoes
My friend Andrew Gong who is an avid shoe enthusiast always had a passion for shoes. Australia has a notorious reputation when it comes to shoes and availability so he collaborated with Chinese Maker Mattina to create a small curated Hand-Welted selection for House of Agin.
He currently does MTO to avoid dead stock and it starts at $490 with a 50% deposit including Free Lasted Shoe Trees until October 31st 2020. Andrew is quite open and honest about any compromises to keep the price down which is very commendable. Here’s his own description about the shoes.
“House of Agin was launched to bring customers quality handwelted shoes at accessible prices. Honesty is our policy here – we can’t promise you bespoke level shoes for pocket change, but we have put a lot of thought into where we can save in order to invest more into the specs that matter most. Mattina Shoes represents the intersection of high quality and value for money, offering an understated but elegant aesthetic that can be appreciated without shouting for attention. Mattina has manufactured welted shoes in China for the Japanese market for several decades; House of Agin’s upgraded specs and QC are sure to please quality shoe enthusiasts around the world.”
I wish him the best and who knows maybe I will get a Review Pair one day!
Quick Noble Shoe News
I won’t dedicate too much space on this but I do want to mention we are running 3 superb GMTOs at The Noble Shoe that close tomorrow. Maybe I will extend them one more week since many request it.
- Carlos Santos 9156 Field Boots in Patina
- Carlos Santos 9899 Reverse Stitched Handgrade Oxford in Patina
- Carlos Santos 6307 Handgrade Single Monks in Patina
Which one are you getting? I will be happy to have you onboard!
That’s All For September!
And that was it my fellow shoe enthusiasts for the Welted Shoe News from September 2020. Quite a variety wasn’t it? There is always drama and excitement in the shoe industry. I should probably mention that the mad-lads in Italy went through with MICAM Milano and as expected it was completely dead.
Once more I urge you to only buy from reputable shops and shoemakers or do a lot of due diligence first. The future does excite me even though the impact of Covid on the industry is hard. I look forward to seeing what October brings.
Got any news to share? Let me know and don’t forget to Subscribe!
Thank you for reading,