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Wildsmith shoe brand resurrected

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by bengal-stripe, Jun 22, 2013.

  1. Chay

    Chay New Member

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    Location:
    Northamptonshire, England
    Happy New Year Gents!

    Opinion is always subjective and the world would be a boring place if we all thought the same..

    For those of you who know me personally, or have worked with me previously, hopefully you will agree that I have a certain passion for good shoes, so when I became involved with Wildsmith I can honestly say that my first thoughts were about how I could design a collection of quality shoes, which materials to use, and the quality of manufacture. Second to this was the fact that I wanted to embrace the history of Wildsmith in a manner that was befitting of the heritage, which is why the vast majority are classic styles and not too fashion forward. Finally, I wanted John Wildsmith to be pleased with what we had created, that was important to me and still is.
    I am pleased with the shoes and would happily have them dissected as I am entirely comfortable with the materials used in their making. That stated I always think that there is room for improvement and as such each pair is now hand polished prior to dispatch.
    I know we have a long way still to go in order to become established, there are some great shoes coming out of Northamptonshire and having been in the industry all my working life it pleases me to see the resurgence in English shoemaking. Hopefully people will try Wildsmith in addition to their regular brands and then they can come to their own conclusions on what we are offering, most folk here know their shoes!

    Anyway, enough from me. I wish that 2014 is a happy and healthy New Year for you all!

    Chay.
     
  2. wurger

    wurger Senior member

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    Great to have you back on SF, Chay, best of luck with Wildsmith.
     
  3. Chay

    Chay New Member

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    Thanks Wurger, appreciated!
     
  4. SuitedDx

    SuitedDx Senior member

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    My interactions with Chay has been excellent. I trust the shoes will not disappoint!

    Now I am just waiting for the Regents to be in stock!

    FYI I think they have a sale right now too :)
     
  5. j ingevaldsson

    j ingevaldsson Senior member

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    I actually can't understand this opinion at all, with all due respect. Sure, I only own one pair yet, but as opposed to you I have actually been wearing the shoes for a while, and I'd say they are everything but overpriced. The quality is excellent for the price, both when it comes to the materials and construction. I'd definitely say that these are more or less comparable to for example Carmina or Crockett & Jones benchgrade.
     
    Last edited: Jan 1, 2014
  6. PhiloVance

    PhiloVance Senior member

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    +1 I reviewed the Covent model at my blog and I don't see how one could describe these shoes as overpriced. As I wrote before, I actually think Chay is putting out a pretty unique shoe that offers features that you don't normally find at that price. In fairness, though, I've never seen a pair of Lodger shoes in person.

    http://uptowndandy.blogspot.com/2013/10/wildsmiths-covent-return-of-modified.html
     
  7. A.J.V

    A.J.V Senior member

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    Location:
    Helsinki, Finland
    Few pics of the Trinity loafer I ended up going with.

    [​IMG]

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    Not the most suitable choice for Finnish winter weather but summer is coming.. Will come up with a detailed review later on.
     
    Last edited: Jan 2, 2014
  8. A.J.V

    A.J.V Senior member

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    This pretty much sums up my thoughts of the shoes. And of course you can add Alfred Sargent exclusive-range to that list.

    Just as a mention, they are also running a short winter-sale at the website at the moment.
     
  9. j ingevaldsson

    j ingevaldsson Senior member

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    This is not necessarily true, it all depends on which business model the brands choose. For example Alfred Sargent who don't sell their shoes on their own at all, only through retailers, have the same price for when they are branded AS as if a shop or other brand wants to put their name on it. Hence Herring Shoes or A fine pair of shoes-collections made by AS to exactly the same standard as the AS Exclusive range cost just as much, even if it's sold to a brand who don't own a factory. Same thing with Wildsmith, they have managed to cut the pricing with less pronounced fiddle waist and chestnut tanned soles instead of oak bark tanned, but they are just as much shoes for the money as AS Exclusive.

    This goes for for example Gaziano and Girling and Edward Green as well, who make shoes for a number of different brands under their names but that cost just as much in many occasions (in some the brand ordering the shoes have chosen to raise the prices a bit though to get a higher margin). When G&G or for example Carmina sell their shoes on their own shops or websites, they still keep the same price as their wholesalers do, just get a higher margin in their own pockets.

    An example of the opposite is Vass, who has the lowest possible price for when you order directly through them, but when retailers sell them they cost more since they have to have a decent margin on the products. They haven't adjusted their pricing to a wholesaler perspective, at least not yet.

    But of course there are brands who buy their shoes from a factory and sell them for much more than what they are "actually worth". I'm just saying that this is not the only way things are, and I think that it's very wrong to generalise things the way you are doing it. You can find a lot of shoes with a great quality to price-ratio from brands who don't own their own factory as well.
     
    Last edited: Jan 2, 2014
  10. TheWraith

    TheWraith Senior member

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  11. Macs

    Macs Senior member

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    Yesterday I received my first pair of Wildsmith:

    [​IMG]

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    I am very pleased with the richness of the colour.

    Today I wore them for the first time

    [​IMG]

    I find them so comfortable and dealing with Chay has been such a pleasure that I have already ordered another pair...
     
    1 person likes this.
  12. Macs

    Macs Senior member

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    And here is the second pair, suede Brunswick on the same last as the chukkas.

    [​IMG]

    Received them yesterday, maiden voyage today

    [​IMG]
     
  13. ethanm

    ethanm Senior member

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    أرض العزم
    Does anybody have sizing information for the Bloomsbury? 7 UK in Carmina Simpson fits me perfectly, would 6.5E in the Bloomsbury work?
     
  14. Macs

    Macs Senior member

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    Is the Bloomsbury an E fitting? I looked at the website and did not find where they say so.
    Anyway I think the E fitting is narrower that the normal F fitting.
    Which fitting are you wearing with Carmina? If they are an F, I don't see why going on a smaller size with a narrower fitting, I'd rather go for a 7.5 E...
     
  15. vriche

    vriche Senior member

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    I'm going to be in the market for some Black Captoe Oxfords and was leaning towards the AS Armfield from AFPOS. Then I read a few reviews on the Sloane and saw that it's also made by AS albeit slightly inferior to the Armfield but share most of the same characteristics mainly leather quality and construction for $135 less, a no-brainer if you ask me. But when you take into consideration that the Armfield comes with lasted trees and free shipping, it's only a $21 difference for the Sloane after lasting trees and delivery fee to the US. In that scenario, I think the AS Armfield is the clear winner.
     
  16. Macs

    Macs Senior member

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    I don't think those are the only parameters that should drive the choice, they are made on hugely different lasts.
     
  17. wurger

    wurger Senior member

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    Armfield for sure, great looking shoe with a great price, and its fitting is pretty standard easy.
     
  18. Chowkin

    Chowkin Senior member

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    Location:
    Hong Kong
    +1.

    While I cannot comment on which last fits the OP better, the minimal difference in pricing will argue for the Armfield due to better materials. In addition, if the OP wears half sizes, the Armfield has the added advantage of having lasted shoe trees in half sizes, so he does not have to settle for smaller trees.
     
  19. vriche

    vriche Senior member

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    Thanks for the info, gentlemen!
     
  20. Wildsmith

    Wildsmith Well-Known Member

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    May 16, 2006
    I agree.......One must learn to overcome the issues one has no control over........

    As my earlier threads may or may not have made clear in my drought of dignity........I do wish the new Wildsmith every success. My stubbornness and pride wrongfully got the better of me.....

    Having visited the Wildsmith showroom, I was pleased to see a continuation of an age old family brand and I did feel a sense of nostalgia seeing the name up on the wall! I did want to purchase a pair of the midnight blue suede monks however they not, at the time, have a size 12. in a wide fitting.....a problem I come across frequently in any RTW shoe! Maybe in a few weeks time!

    Kind regards

    Matthew
     
    3 people like this.

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