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Updated Cleverley Website - Page 2

post #16 of 37
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Live and learn. How well does it work?
The only pair of footwear I own that has been made using this method is a pair of custom-made cowboy boots from Wheeler Boot Company in Houston. In my case, it worked very well. I would imagine that the odder your feet are, the more problematic this method would be.
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Does either EG or Vass call that MTM?
I believe that EG doesn't differentiate between what they do and their normal made-to-order service. Vass calls their process bespoke.
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Are the modifications as substantial as the modifications on a MTM suit?
In the case of EG, I don't know. In the case of Vass, I would think that the modifications possible are much more significant than the modifications possible on a MTM suit.
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Also, bespoke shoes typically use different (better) materials and a lot more handwork. Is that also true of this type of shoe, or are they basically made to the same standard as a RTW shoe?
For both EG and Vass, there is no difference in production techniques or quality of materials used between their RTW shoes and their shoes made using this method. For Vass, their production techniques and materials are always top-of-the-line. EG's are somewhat less so, but why would they want to make it too good when they still have a full bespoke product available?
post #17 of 37
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I'm confused by your phrase "custom bootmakers".
I mean American makers of western boots produced to order in whatever design the client wants on lasts modified to match his measurements. Examples are Dave Wheeler, Tex Robin, Lee Miller, Paul Bond, and Dave Little. I purposely don't call it bespoke because the last isn't produced de novo for each client.
post #18 of 37
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I don't _think_ EG special orders are made with bespoke quality leather although tonyeg knows a heck of a lot better than I.
Shoefan? Shoefan, there. Help us out, please.
post #19 of 37
Thanks - I thought you were including U.S. shoemakers as well.
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In my case, it worked very well. I would imagine that the odder your feet are, the more problematic this method would be.
BTW - are you claiming your feet to be "Not Odd"? "Less Odd"? or "Normal"? If the latter, are they credentialed as such? Or is it merely an unsubstantiated allegation? Shoes. Shoes. Shoes.
post #20 of 37
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Thanks - I thought you were including U.S. shoemakers as well.
No, no, no. I don't want Roman Vainguz to hit me in the head with a last.
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BTW - are you claiming your feet to be "Not Odd"? "Less Odd"? or "Normal"?
I claim none of these but rather that my feet are not sufficiently odd to make this method problematic, despite the fact that I do have two right feet.
post #21 of 37
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In any case, seeing Cleverley's incredible and broad collection makes me wonder whether it's possible to get their RTW line on the US, other than on EBay.
The only stockists they list besides themselves are Beams in Tokyo, but I'm sure that they would be more than happy to send you some from Britain just as soon as you can get them your credit card number.
post #22 of 37
Thread Starter 
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Wow, amazing shoes.  You know, Cleverley's old website was way better than Edward Green's.  But with this new Cleverley website, Edward Green's now looks positively prehistoric.   What are there, about 4 or 5 shoes pictured on the EG website, and poorly photographed at that.  We have to go to the Japanese shoe porn sites to view pictures of EG shoes.   In any case, seeing Cleverley's incredible and broad collection makes me wonder whether it's possible to get their RTW line on the US, other than on EBay.
They will take orders during their shows (twice a year)
post #23 of 37
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They will take orders during their shows (twice a year)
Yes, but they only have samples, not try-ons. In the end, it's very much like calling them in London and ordering what you like.
post #24 of 37
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RJman is right. The acid test of bespoke is whether a pattern or last is individually drawn (or carved) for each customer. The acid test of MTM in tailored clothing is whether the stock pattern is modified to better fit a particular individual. So far as I know, this cannot be and never is done with shoe lasts.
"Lattanzi himself we find crouched on the floor whittling away with a piece of broken glass at a last, which he's already built up at the sides with what looks like plaster. "No machine can do this," he says, looking up at me. "Only hands"”knowing where you want to add and where to take away." What he's been doing, he says, is creating the shape of my feet out of standard-size lasts." http://www.departures.com/fa/fa_0300_lattanzishoes.html
post #25 of 37
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Does either EG or Vass call that MTM?   I believe that EG doesn't differentiate between what they do and their normal made-to-order service. Vass calls their process bespoke.
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Are the modifications as substantial as the modifications on a MTM suit? In the case of EG, I don't know. In the case of Vass, I would think that the modifications possible are much more significant than the modifications possible on a MTM suit.
Last November, I placed an order with E. Green for a Ladbrooke on the 888 last. I tried an 8 on in the shop, and liked it for the width in the ball of the foot.  Unfortunately, it was too long, and the heel was too big.  The fitter noted that I had a high (but not necessarily wide) foot.   He offered to modify the stock 7.5 last by affixing leather to the top of the last that my Ladbrooks will be made on.  The top of the last will be built up 3/16", thus giving me additional height in the shoe.   If I were to compare this modification to my MTM suit experience, I think that the 3/16" addition is quite significant in terms of scale.   I have yet to take delivery, so I cannot comment on whether this modification will solve my fit problems. Bic
post #26 of 37
Okay, okay, I stand corrected. There are made to measure shoes. Which one of us is going to write to the shoemakers and politely ask them to update their terminology?
post #27 of 37
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(Manton @ Feb. 08 2005,16:55) The acid test of MTM in tailored clothing is whether the stock pattern is modified to better fit a particular individual.  So far as I know, this cannot be and never is done with shoe lasts.
It can be and is done. The maker will add strips of leather or other material to a stock last to fit the client's measurements (hence the name -- the addition method). Vass in Budapest uses this method, as do all of the custom bootmakers in the United States that I know of. Edward Green will make some additions to stock lasts to satisfy hard-to-fit customers on special orders, but I don't think that the modifications that they'll make for this service are as extensive as you would find at Vass.
This is commonly done in Australia for MTM shoes. l have afew boots made by this method and they fit me well.
post #28 of 37
This whole issue of "MTM" versus "bespoke" is opening a can of worms where shoes are concerned.  (This is not true for clothes, for reasons I will try to clarify below.) First off, consider how a shoe is made, and what role the last serves.  For purposes of this discussion, the last serves two functions -- it can be used for the development of a specific and unique upper pattern, from which the upper leather will be cut; and of course it will be used for the actual production of the shoe, when the upper leather is stretched over the last and then the insole, welt, and sole are attached to the upper.  The value of the use of the last for the creation of the upper pattern is that, in theory, the upper will look nicer and hug the foot better if the upper is made specifically for the exact last on which the shoe will be produced.  In addition, of course, the ultimate fit of the completed shoe will be in large part a result of how the last relates to the wearer's foot. It is axiomatic that RTW shoes are made on "stock" lasts, from which upper patterns have been derived and on which the RTW shoes are manufactured.  In point of fact, though, I think that many manufacturers will have a reduced number of upper patterns for their production, relying on the pliability of leather and the "˜lasting margin' to allow them to use the same upper for more than one size - e.g. a size 8 and a size 8 ½ might both be made using the same upper pattern, which means the larger size will have the leather stretched a bit more over the last, and also with less "˜overhang' around the bottom of the last - this "˜overhang' is trimmed off after the shoe has been welted.  Also, in the case where a variety of shoe shapes are offered but the lasts are otherwise similar, one upper pattern may suffice for making a similar shoe with different toe shapes. "Bespoke" shoes, on the other hand, are made on lasts made specifically for the customer's feet, based on a series of measurements takes by the shoemaker, the nature of the customer's feet (e.g. fleshy vs. bony), the customer's preferred fit, the desired toe shape, and the type of shoe/boot to be produced.  There are a number of measurements that may be used to produce the last, including length (overall, and heel to ball, the latter more important), joint circumference, waist circumference, instep circumference, "short heel" and "long heel" circumferences, heel width, joint width, and ankle circumference.   Further, the shape of a customer's feet must be factored in, generally based on a tracing and/or foot imprint from the customer's feet - that is to say that measurements, while necessary, are not sufficient for a truly bespoke last. So, the objective in all of this is to end up with a last with a specific three-dimensional shape (perhaps topography is a better term, since it is the exterior of the last that is important here).  How the shoemaker arrives at that shape is, IMO, not important.  That is, s/he can start with a block of wood and carve it down to the desired shape, or s/he could start with an existing last and modify it (by building up and taking away material at the appropriate locations).  If these two methods end up with identical shapes/topographies, why should one be called "bespoke" and the other "custom" or "MTM"?  [Of course, this assumes that one can end up with the exact same shape through both methods.  This will depend upon the skill of the person doing the modification of the stock last, as well as its initial shape.] How is this different than the bespoke vs. MTM distinction in tailored clothes?  In tailored clothes, the pattern is used to cut the cloth, but there is no equivalent to a last in the production of the suit nor in the creation of the pattern; so, a bespoke pattern is based on all of a customer's measurements, plus variables such as amount of drape desired, weight of the fabric, and desired shoulder shape/padding, whereas a MTM suit is not.  Rather, a MTM suit is made using a stock pattern that is modified, to a limited extent, for the cutting of the cloth.  So, a MTM suit would most likely never be cut from a pattern that ends up identical to that of a bespoke pattern, given the constraints in modifying the MTM pattern.  (If a MTM garment ended up with a pattern identical to that of a bespoke one, then there would be no difference between the two, assuming no difference in construction.)  Given two identical lasts, one made de novo and the other by modification - which is conceivable --, the end product would be identical. Now, all of that being said, what about Vass' and E Green's offerings?  I think one issue is how much modification is done to the stock lasts before the shoe is made.  Vass certainly take a set of measurements; as I recall, these were: length; joint, waist, and instep circumferences; short heel; and overall foot tracing/perimeter.  Now, what they do with these measurements I cannot say, but given these measurements I think one could say their "bespoke" offering is truly bespoke, vis-a-vis the last's shape/topography.  The context in which Vass' offering is more like MTM is that they seem to offer customers a limited set of upper patterns, which can be combined with a (modified) last (and associated toe shape).  In contrast, the traditional bespoke makers offer customers the option of designing their own upper pattern, allow them to select their choice of leathers, and will essentially allow a customer to select any toe shape combined with any overall last shape.  I also tend to doubt that Vass are truly making a new upper pattern based on the modified last, although in this context I could be mistaken.  So, is it bespoke or MTM?  You tell me. I am less familiar with the specifics of the Green custom program ( see later post for clarification -- in this missive, I am addressing the non-bespoke offering, i.e. the "MTM"/stock special/____ service); my impression is that they will do some fairly simple modifications to a last to reflect a customer's unique feet, but these modifications are not based on an extensive set of measurements like those of bespoke lasts.  I also doubt that the Green custom offering would involve a new and uniquely made pattern based on the modified last; given the limited modifications to the last, the existing patterns would most likely be used   Green will make any upper patterns on any last and in a huge range of leathers; given their large range of patterns, this is quite a flexible offering. However, there is no doubt that it is not bespoke, nor would I call it MTM.  I don't know what I would call it. Moving beyond the issue of last and upper pattern, there is the issue of construction technique.  In general, bespoke makers (at least in the Europe) use different construction techniques than do RTW makers (with the exception of Vass, Lattanzi, and  perhaps Kiton).  The E Green custom/'MTM'/fill-in-the-blank offering is made using Green's RTW construction techniques, aside from any unique leathers they might offer. JCusey also addresses American custom bootmakers; the term "˜bespoke' has no tradition in US bootmaking, so it is not used.  However, in terms of the lasts used, I would argue that the best bootmakers do make "bespoke" boots.  While they do not generally make lasts de novo, they do extensive modifications to lasts, and they choose lasts based on a customer's foot shape, measurements,etc.  [It is said that a truly capable bootmaker can make a 10EEE last out of a 6AA last.]  Ultimately, the question is not the source/history/methodology for arriving at the shape of the last, but the final shape.
post #29 of 37
Extremely illuminating, shoefan. Thank you. I've linked it in one of the HOF threads.
post #30 of 37
Agree that the new website is so much nicer than the old one. The shoe pictures on the new site were available to anybody who asked for the catalogue though.... and it's been awhile since they changed that.
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