The U-last is very pleasing to my eye, when did Vass start using this?
When I visited Budapest in early 2003, they weren't selling it yet (though I did see a prototype) so, it's been around for 1-1.5 yrs .
The suede Chukka, why does it have a v-notch on the back? Its interesting looking, I dont think I have ever seen something like that before? Is it merely for aesthetics, or does it serve some purpose, comfortwise perhaps?
I believe it is meant to keep the back of the boot from chafing the back of your ankle while walking.
Are those new shoes on the U last, or a new last?
They are on the U last. It's possible it is a newer, less severe version of the U, but I can't say for sure as I have not seen them in person yet. Â
Andrew, why do you call those wingtips on the "U" last "Budapests"? I thought that the Budapest was a specific last with a rounded, high toe box?
As the guys said, Vass uses "Budapest" as a name for their signature model, as well as a generic term for a wingtip shoe.
where are these available and what is the price range?
The shoes are available at Louis Boston. On the U last, they carry a wingtip derby, a Norwegian laceup, and a Norwegian penny loafer similar to these:
They also carry a burgandy penny loafer on the Peter last, a shell cordovan wingtip on the Banana last, and a black shell cordovan full boot with a rubber sole (think couture combat boot.) Prices run appx. $800-$1150, and just under 2K for the shell cordovan boot.
When are those "new styles" going to be available?
As soon as we can convince stores to stock them.. It's a lot harder than you might imagine. They would rather sell RTW Lobb at the same price-point, even though Vass is a Lattanzi-quality shoe at a Lobb price. I understand why - shoes, like most of the clothing business, are still very much a name game. Louis in an exception to that rule - they prefer to pioneer new brands, as the Louis name is enough to sell whatever they stock. Also, if you are interested in special-orders, Gabor will be accompanying Darren Beaman for his US visits, and will be taking orders then.
Regarding the U-last, I also have thought perhaps it was too severely pointy. The picture of the chukka boot doesn't look too pointy, though it has the U-last. But that may just be due to the side photography.
I ordered those boots with a double sole for that reason. It really balances the shape in my opinion, especially as they are a size 13.
Yes, one thing about the Vass shoes is that pictures simply don't do them justice.
Thanks Koji. Very true.