One of the biggest challenges of geting a bespoke garment or a pair of shoes is the time it takes for the completed product to arrive. It typically takes a shoemaker or a team of shoemakers between 50 to 60 hours to make a pair of hand welted shoes. However, fittings are required and this is best facilitated by easy access to the shoemaker, otherwise the process is slowed down to a snail's pace and dependent upon the shoemaker or your own travel schedules.
For better for or worst, I have reached the point in my bespoke shoe adventures where I have cultivated a pipeline, where one delivery can preoccupy me sufficiently between fittings and delivery. It has been six months or so since taking delivery of my first pair of bespoke shoes from Hidetaka Fukaya.
(Excuse the pants as they were new and a little too long. Rest assured that they have been fixed).
Hot on the heels (no pun intended) of the Hidetaka Fukaya was my order from Gaziano & Girling (or 'G&G' for short) and after a 12 month plus wait, one measurement and two fittings (one in Tokyo and another in Hong Kong) they have finally arrived.
A technically challenging and very rare seamless and stitchless (well only one visible stitch at the throat, slightly hidden) buffalo wholecuts.
Tony Gaziano applying the finishing touches.
So now that this pair has arrived, what else is in the pipeline?
A full brogue from Hidetaka Fukaya, with a second fitting thrown in to further perfect my pattern.
My first experience with a shoemaker who makes a trial shoe and subsequently rips it a part to better understand fit. For those in the know, you will be quick to recognise that this is a widely used technique by the French.
Stay tuned for more updates in the near or far future.