Originally Posted by Lonneker
Thanks - I had seen that too, but thought that I had read here and in other places, from people who are much more knowledgeable than I am, that that's not entirely correct. E.g. why would the additional comfort spacing not be necessary for monks?
Monks achieve the same result by having more than one hole on the strap, so you can adjust the fit.
One of the relevant issues is the way the leather is cut. Calf stretches more in one direction than another, so depending on how the pieces are laid out on the hide, there may or may not be stretching that would make an initial gap necessary.
Bespoke makers seem to handle it in different ways. Some include the gap to compensate for the stretching, while others cut the pieces out so that there's little or no stretching possible in that direction.
With RTW shoes, the makers generally try to get as many pieces out of a hide as possible, so the stretch direction could be any which way.