Bespoke Shoes Unlaced – a shoemaker's blog

Friday, 5 April 2013

Makers of the exceptional

It's been as very busy, but exciting week. We are delighted to be part of the Vicheron Constantin and Walpole "Crafted - makers of the exceptional" exhibition at Somerset House and enjoyed a lively evening at the launch party on Wednesday evening...

(This was a rare moment of sunshine)

...followed by an early, but interesting panel discussion the next morning with Gillian De Bono of the FT's How To Spend It;  Tony Chambers, Editor-in-Chief of Wallpaper magazine; Guy Salter from Walpole; Deyan Sudjic Director of The Design Museum and Sasha Wilkins of libertylondongirl. 

It was great to catch up with crafted mentees old and new and to meet so many people interested in craft and design...and the show, expertly curated by Peter Ting and Brian Kennedy, provides plenty of surprises to draw visitors in and gives the work on show ample space to breath.  

On the subject of craft and design we visited the most excellent Battle of Bosworth Heritage Centre at the weekend. (The Battle of Bosworth was Plantageanants vs Tudors and was the beginning of the War of the Roses). It was when I photographed the following that I realised the 'It' bag is not a modern phenomenon! Below is a picture of a pair of boots from the period and a bag.

Just look how plain and simple the boots are in comparison with the already rather 'bling' bag? I love this bag's shape and intend to emulate it somehow.

And, on a final note on craft, the knife below was a 'thank you' gift from the Heritage Craft Association for my little presentation there a week or two ago. What an absolutely perfect gift for tool-obsessed shoemaker. It now sits with pride next to my cherished Laguiole. It is by Trevor Ablett, one of the last of Sheffield's 'little mesters', who makes pocketknives in much the same way as they were made 150 years ago.

A consummate craftsman and the perfect end to a craft focused post! Come and see us at Somerset House if you are in London today or Saturday and, until next week (when jimmyshoe is back from his holidays), happy shoemaking.