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My first pair of handmade English shoes by Ducker and Son

post #1 of 12
Thread Starter 
I was in Atlanta this weekend and thanks to Kenneth Pollock's post on SF about 9.5 Grensons at Bennie's, I went to check it out. The captoe Oundle in brown was stunning but the last too narrow for me. There were some nice Grensons (including the loafers picked up by Artisan Fan) but none fit me and I really need laceups.

Just when I thought it was hopeless, I noticed a pair of black perforated captoes w/medallion in a wider, rounder toe last than the Oundle (rather like the EG 82 or 606 vs. the 888 for the Oundle). These were not marked Grensons but had the exact same sole with black in the middle and nail pattern, and insides as the Masterpieces. The calf leather is softer than anything I have ever seen. They are marked Ducker and Sons, The Turley, Oxford and the salesperson confirmed they were made by Grenson.

They were stamped imperfect and the only defect I could notice was the medallion on the left shoe was slightly off-center (see pic). Also, an interesting detail I have not seen in other shoes is the tongue on one side was stitched to the upper. Best of all, they fit me great and they were marked down to $150 (from $500), less 10% = $135!! As much as I like the styling of sleeker lasts like the EG 888, they don't work as well for my feet as rounder toe lasts.

I just looked up Ducker and Son and it seems they are a bespoke operation in Oxford. http://www.travelpublishing.co.uk/Co...y/CSO25728.htm

The shoes I bought retail for £358.00 GBP on their online site http://www.duckerandson.co.uk/shoppi...S44e36cffecd25 (it's the first one: Black semi Brogue Top Quality Box Calf) so I got an amazing deal and am quite happy.

Does anyone know more about Ducker and Son? Do Grensons make RTW shoes for them?










Here you can see the medallion is slightly off-center on the left shoe.


post #2 of 12
I actually lived a couple of doors down from Ducker & Son for 3 years or so when back in university. Lincoln College is almost directly opposite their shop along Turl Street in Oxford.



They're based in a small shop slightly further along and just out of shot further down the right hand side of the street. Lincoln College runs down the left side and I lived in accommodation just out of shot nearer to us on the right side.

Their shop always struck me as one of those "how do they possibly stay in business?" operations. But they clearly do. The shoe pictured looks a fair bit sleeker than some of their (presumably sample bespoke) numbers in the shop window which have a very, very rounded (and to my mind, fairly inelegant) toe area.

EDIT - Hmm, I see your shoes are indeed featured on the company website. Your photography is considerably more flattering to the shoe than theirs!
post #3 of 12
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Holdfast
I actually lived a couple of doors down from Ducker & Son for 3 years or so when back in university. Lincoln College is almost directly opposite their shop along Turl Street in Oxford.

They're based in a small shop slightly further along and just out of shot further down the right hand side of the street. Lincoln College runs down the left side and I lived in accommodation just out of shot nearer to us on the right side.

Their shop always struck me as one of those "how do they possibly stay in business?" operations. But they clearly do. The shoe pictured looks a fair bit sleeker than some of their (presumably sample bespoke) numbers in the shop window which have a very, very rounded (and to my mind, fairly inelegant) toe area.

EDIT - Hmm, I see your shoes are indeed featured on the company website. Your photography is considerably more flattering to the shoe than theirs!

Thanks for the info Holdfast. I agree their pics are not very good but somehow, I doubt they sell many shoes online.

Do you think that Grenson made these shoes for Ducker or do you think they were indeed made by Ducker in Oxford?
post #4 of 12
Yes, these are Grensons. I also own them.
post #5 of 12
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by zjpj83
Yes, these are Grensons. I also own them.

Thanks. Are yours Ducker and Son too or branded Grenson?
post #6 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by EL72
Thanks for the info Holdfast. I agree their pics are not very good but somehow, I doubt they sell many shoes online.

Do you think that Grenson made these shoes for Ducker or do you think they were indeed made by Ducker in Oxford?

Grenson for Ducker would be my bet.

As I say, the Ducker ones in the window look even MORE rounded at the toe and generally seem "stubbier" if that's a word and/or makes sense. Not my cup of tea, I'm afraid.
post #7 of 12
No, mine are also Ducker and Son
post #8 of 12
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by zjpj83
No, mine are also Ducker and Son

Bought at Bennies too?
post #9 of 12
Yes, a long time ago, and I know for a fact that they came in with the Grenson shipment (not this last one - the one before that, a couple of years ago).
post #10 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by Holdfast
I actually lived a couple of doors down from Ducker & Son for 3 years or so when back in university. Lincoln College is almost directly opposite their shop along Turl Street in Oxford.

Just down from an even better college, Exeter.

I used to stand and stare at the shoes in the Ducker window during my, sadly, brief time there. It's interesting to know that they're Grensons.
post #11 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by AlanC
Just down from an even better college, Exeter.



Does not compute!

Quote:
I used to stand and stare at the shoes in the Ducker window during my, sadly, brief time there. It's interesting to know that they're Grensons.

I think the ones in the shop window are (at least mainly) Ducker's own (presumably bespoke) style. Some of them certainly look very old. Their RTW seems to be Grenson by the sounds of things in this thread.

On the other hand, that's just my supposition based on the photos here and my memory of the shoes in the window.
post #12 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by AlanC
Just down from an even better college, Exeter.

Them's fighting words! I was on the winning end of a protracted and bitter darts rivalry which was only put to bed with a definitive cuppers victory from St. Anne's in 2000. Nice bar at Exeter, shame about the farmers in it
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