Bespoke Shoes Unlaced – a shoemaker's blog

Friday, 4 February 2011

Spotlight on the Goldfish Bowl

It has been a busy week at Gieves and unusually for us we have been somewhat in the spotlight!

We are always thrilled for our shoes and the craft to get attention and praise - from press and customers alike...but James and I have both been shy about too much personal attention. We knew that things might change when we moved into the 'goldfish bowl' - (until then, we had only ever made shoes in our workshop here at Cockpit Arts or at trunk shows - remember James in the window at Leffot in New York?) - so making shoes here is helping us to overcome our shyness.

It's to be expected and is certainly welcome. I've always believed that choosing someone involved in creating your style - whether it is your tailor, hairdresser or shoemaker - is as much about a meeting of minds as about the product. So we are quite unusual I guess, in that we are both the business partners and the actual shoe makers - yes, James and I actually do the making. So for customers, the 'goldfish bowl' really is a special opportunity to not only meet the people who actually make your shoes, but to to see them at work and to talk to them about what you are looking for.

Anyway, back to all this you know from James' distracted blogging last week his photo now graces the entrance on Vigo street... but this week, as well as enjoying showing our craft to the owners of Gieves & Hawkes... (and evading the 'paps' hanging around looking for Wills-related shots) we both had our portraits taken (yes you may actually get to see what The Other One looks like), we have our fabulous Snob Loafers in GQ and we celebrated the launch of Crafted YR2 generously hosted by Gieves & Hawkes.

Credit: GQ magazine

The shoes on show in GQ (see above) are one of the series that we are producing especially with Gieves & Hawkes and is the ultimate luxury - a tasseled loafer in sumptuous matte crocodile with a Tyrian (royal) purple lining. It sits proudly in the G&H window on Savile Row alongside our Campaign Boot (in soft English grain and Gieves' military twill). The Snobs truly have arrived on the Row!

Wednesday evening's Crafted Yr 2 launch was a special night for us. We were thrilled to be chosen by Crafted as part of the programme's first year and have really benefited from the mentoring help that we received. Wednesday was a night to say thank yous to so many people - to Gieves & Hawkes, Peter Ting, Cockpit Arts, Crafted, Arts & Business, Walpole, the American Express Foundation, our advisers and of course, our mentor Mark Henderson.

Gieves & Hawkes provided a luxurious showcase for the wonderful work from this year's intake of carefully selected craft entrepreneurs and it was lovely to meet so many of them. With a shared fundamental belief in craftsmanship and an appreciation for objects beautifully made, there was much to talk about.

A great night and a great week, but I'm looking forward to a few days of just shoemaking next week!


Shane Bailey said...

congratulations! post more photos of your works:)

jimmyshoe said...

Thanks Shane, we are always happy to self promote

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