Bespoke Shoes Unlaced – a shoemaker's blog

Friday, 18 June 2010

Adieu to Crafted!

The Master is rather busy catching up with shoemaking work after our New York course so it's my turn to share a little, none-making related news. (Sorry makers, back to the leather and knives next week!)

Yesterday was a momentous day in some ways as we bade adieu to our friends at Walpole and Arts & Business, our fellow Crafted colleagues and our magnificent mentors and advisors. (But it was adieu and not farewell as the generosity of the mentors and advisors with their time continues!)

As pioneers of the Crafted programme it has been an interesting experience. We have benefited enormously as a business from the exposure to luxury brand and business experts - not necessarily in immediate sales, but in making contacts and getting the business ship-shape! We now understand better the business side of things and the one critical thing that we will sink without - profitability!

Any craftspeople out there looking for a little business help should definitely apply to Crafted. Get cracking though, because the deadline is the end of the month!

Anyway, yesterday was all about feedback and it was revealing to discover that not only have we all taken away something very different for each of our businesses, but that it has been a two-way thing and many of our mentors have also learned from the experience.

It is great to share success stories - Helen Beard's work with Fortnum; and discover Crafted collaborations such as our Winkers in Eloise Grey's tweeds. In fact, we are loving the whole tweed thing so much, that we are showing our new bespoke tweed boots and Harris Tweed Winkers alongside Eloise at the Goodwood Revival in September.

Looking ahead, I can't believe that it is June and we are already gearing up for the next shoemaking course. New York still seems just a few weeks ago. With eight students under our watchful eye this August it is going to be quite a time. We now have a waiting list for future courses, so we are currently discussing if and when to do an autumn course, and dates for our New York and London courses in 2011. It is great to hear from so many people keen to have a go and find out whether shoemaking is for them.

So not only do we have Goodwood to look forward to, but we have also been accepted for Origin which has relocated to Old Spitalfields Market for September. We hope that the new venue will be as big a draw as Somerset House was and that some of those uber cool Hoxton and Shoreditch trendies will venture into the world of craft to discover us there!

That's it for this week - oh, except to say that the Wolf & Badger sale starts next week and our Limited Edition Half Cuts will be on sale (not often a word associated with carreducker we know) so get down there if you want to snap up a pair!

Have a great weekend and happy shoemaking!