Welted Shoe News June 2020 | Alden Lawsuit, J.FitzPatrick New Line & More
June Was A Very Eventful Month!
Welcome to the June 2020 Edition of the Welted Shoe News Series! At the beginning of each month I do a summary of the most important news I could find in the shoe industry. June was actually a really interesting month with scandals, lawsuits and brand new releases.
Most notable is the lawsuit of Alden and its former VP, as well as the brand new entry level line from J.FitzPatrick. There is even a joint lawsuit for counterfeit shoes coming from Amazon of all places!
Let’s get ready to rumble!
What’s New At The Noble Shoe?
It is traditional for me to start the article with news from my own little shop which is The Noble Shoe. This time however I will keep it short and simple with the latest arrivals.
This is a dual drop since it consists of the same model in two different make ups. Both Chukkas cost 309$ with Free Shipping and you can use the code FIRST5 for 5% off your first purchase.
One is in Dark Brown Coimbra Patina (Link Here) and a wardrobe staple for everyday wear.
And there is also one in Dark Brown Suede (Link Here). Yet another great pair that can work in most seasons and occasions.
You can watch my showcase video here! Please consider subscribing to the channel!
Alden Sues Ex-VP For 27 Million $
Alden is one of the most beloved companies in the shoe world and one of the few that remain in the US. This makes it a very sad to include them for the wrong reasons in the June 2020 Welted Shoe News. If you are unfamiliar with the brand you can get a quick overview in my guide.
Instead of going in depth about the situation I will try to make it short and concise. For those of you that want to read the whole story here is a quick link from Boston Globe. There are more articles on Google about the topic as well.
So what happened is that the former Vice President of Alden Shoe Co. Richard Hajjar took $27 Million from the company between 2011 and 2019. He practically gave the money to a blonde bimbo influencer and TV Persona, Bianca de la Garza. He even bought her a $1.1 Million mansion. Unbelievable he could get away with this and it does show how poorly a company’s security and audit can be.
Now they are suing them for $15 Million and I really hope they get it back. No matter their revenue this is still a colossal amount.
Amazon & Valentino Sue Fakers
It’s really lawsuit season and a very interesting at that. If you remember from last month’s article, I absolutely despise shoe scammers. You know, those that steal photos and pretend they will make you shoes for 50$ and end up stealing your money.
One of the biggest channels for these kinds of scams is Pinterest, Random Shopify Stores, Ebay and of course Amazon. In this instance the Italian Luxury (lol) Brand Valentino teamed up with Amazon to sue Kaitlyn Pan Group. The latter allegedly counterfeited Valentino shoes and sold them online.
The case seems to be older but the news surfaced this month (Source).
Loads Of News From J.FitzPatrick
Justin from the Shoe Snob Blog is a really nice guy with passion for shoes. He also operates the eponymous J.FitzPatrick Footwear and he had tons of news last month.
To begin with Justin finally managed to open his first New York Store which is a huge achievement! You can find the store at 101 Thompson St. in the Soho neighborhood of New York. They will be open to welcome you from Monday to Saturday (11 am to 7 pm).
Secondly he also begins offering custom patinas which is excellent. What is even better is that the patina artist is well-known Greg Park (@hancore on Instagram). I knew him from some of his stunning patinas for JM Legazel. Prices range from $120-160 for shoes and up to $295 for bigger leather goods like bags.
Lastly, Justin launched a new entry level shoe line called the JF Line. His older more expensive designs were always a bit more flamboyant and unique so this is the gap he is trying to fill with the JF Line. Affordable, Goodyear Welted shoes for around $250. In fact if you enter the current Pre-Sale you can get them as low as $195.
The collection includes more conservative designs, chukkas, loafers and oxfords but there is still a “Justin feel” to them with vibrant colors and daring suedes. Very interesting development.
New Podcast Idea
A Podcast about shoes and maybe tailoring is something I’ve been meaning to do for a long time now. Last week I had a conversation about it with multiple shoe enthusiast friends and they supported the idea. Therefore it is slowly taking shape.
What always strikes me about these kinds of podcasts is that they always involve very experienced people or makers. That’s great, but what about us, the normal everyday people? I want to have discussions with someone that shares the same passion as me but on a more hobby level.
So when I get this started I will be having some really nice discussions with many of you! I am excited about it even though I don’t have a particular timeline. More about it next month!
Brooks Brothers Files For Bankruptcy?
While this is not pure Welted Shoe News, in June 2020 Brooks Brothers was on the edge of bankruptcy. They do make shoes that allegedly Crockett & Jones produces so it deserves a mention.
Brooks Brothers always based its reputation on the “Made in America” slogan which is very appealing to the US market where more and more outsource production overseas. This however also results in higher operating costs and with flat revenues and increasing debt over the last 3 years Brooks Brothers might have to file for Chapter 11. It could be bankruptcy, liquidation, closures or refinancing and restructure.
Time will tell for the iconic retailer whose revenue had a nosedive during the peak of Covid-19. Brooks Brothers is one of the oldest tailoring brands with their first shop opening in 1818.
Sales & Re-openings
Lastly, I would like to briefly talk about a few things that involves sales and the re-opening of physical stores. Beginning with Crockett & Jones that opened its physical stores in the UK after so long in mid-June. A very welcome sight to see that we are slowly getting back to more normal times.
The other thing involves summer sales and mainly from other British Brands like Loake, Cheaney and Tricker’s. Here’s a very quick overview:
- Loake: 30% Off on selected lines (Link)
- Tricker’s: Up to 40% Off (Link)
- Cheaney: Up to 50% Off (Link)
- Allen Edmonds: Up to 75% Off (Link)
- Gaziano & Girling: 20% Off with code SPRING20 (Link)
- Carmina: 20-30% Off selected styles (Link)
Other brands have sales here and there too but it’s a good chance to get something from the high end or the entry level. Not bad.
Half Of 2020 Gone Already!
Can you believe that? We are already in July 2020 and so many things happened this year. You can see that the industry is changing a lot and continue to evolve and favor companies with a strong digital footprint and infrastructure. Bloods are boiling, lawsuits are flying and many iconic chains might close for good.
So please remember to support the small family owned businesses and invest in quality over quantity. There is something out there for every budget. This concludes the “Welted Shoe News for June 2020” and I hope you enjoyed it. Did I miss something? Please let me know in the comments and don’t forget to Subscribe!
I will see you next week hopefully with an exciting new Review from CNES Shoemaker.
Thank you for reading,