Bespoke Shoes Unlaced – a shoemaker's blog

Friday, 8 July 2016

Istituto Marangoni and Cockpit Arts

Welcome back shoe fans and a belated happy 4th of July! Summer finally seems to have turned up for a few days so we've been out and about making the most of it. 

I haven't been over to the hip east end for ages, so it was a treat to visit the London campus of Milan's fashion school, Istituto Marangoni in aptly named Fashion Street, Shoreditch.

It was just a quick visit this time to catch up with an old friend and to hear about the school's fashion marketing, but I'm looking forward to a return visit and full tour soon. We hope to become involved with the school in the long term, perhaps offering a specialist handsewn bespoke module. But until then, Istituto Marangoni students can discover the English shoemaking craft for themselves on our Intensive Shoemaking and Pattern Making for Bespoke Shoes courses.

Walking back to Holborn, there were many reminders of just how much London has and is changing; buildings going up and coming down...

Being transformed from warehouses to homes... 

and becoming creative canvases...

A design company HQ
Underground train carriages converted into workshops 
A hidden 'figure'
It is a very inspiring area, full of creative energy. 

As we mentioned last week, we had another opportunity to step away from the work bench...this time for an evening of celebrations as our home for the last 12 years, Cockpit Arts, celebrated its 30th anniversary. We were blessed with a shower free sky on the rooftop gardens at King & Wood Mallesons and it was great to catch up with Cockpitters from both Deptford and Holborn sites.

We enjoyed great hospitality with thanks to Chair of Trustees at Cockpit Arts, Cornelius Medvei and some extraordinary views of the London skyline...

including the new Tate Modern extension...

Chair of Trustees for Cockpit Arts, Cornelius Medvei and guests 

Cockpit Chief Executive, Vanessa Swann with guests
Couture tailor, Thomas von Nordheim and fair trade jeweller, Ute Decker against dramatic skies
James, jeweller Kelvin Birk and me
That's enough glamour for one week...back to shoe fitting conundrums next week. Until then, happy shoemaking. 
(Our thanks to Ute for the Cockpit party shots)