Shoes | A Continuous Lean.

Boots. Just Boots.

Nov 25th, 2014 | Categories: Fall, Footwear, Jake Gallagher, Menswear, Shoes | by Jake Gallagher

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“Pull yourself up by your bootstraps.”

This idiom dates back to the 19th century when men wore tall boots which they had to pull on using loops at the mouth of the boot. Overtime, the phrase came to describe the act of overcoming an obstacle using nothing but your own willpower, and that’s how we still use it today. So, why are we telling you this? Well, boot season is finally upon us here in New York, and instead of blathering on about the merits of a good pair of boots (which we’re sure you’ve heard countless times) we figured why not give you an inane bit of trivia? And, now for something you actually can use, here’s our list of this year’s best boots. Bootstraps not required.





Northampton | The Cradle of Shoe Civilization

Nov 4th, 2014 | Categories: Made in England, Menswear, Shoes | by Jake Gallagher

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“Finishing” is the dirtiest word in high-end footwear. As shoe companies have exported their production to China or Bangladesh or any other country where the production practices are as questionable as the quality of the shoes, many English, Italian, and American brands have begun to exploit a convenient loophole when it comes to marking the country of origin. A shoe might be almost entirely produced overseas, but if it is “finished” in England then that company is free to tack on a “Made in England” label.

What exactly is finishing? Well in some cases it means that the shoe is completed in England – pieces are stitched together, the sole is affixed, etc. but in some cases it means that the shoe was finished and little more than the laces were added in England. Of course, countries have now begun to crack down on this, and it’s not exactly clear how many companies have taken advantage of these loose guidelines, but it’s enough to make savvy shoe-buyers weary. As a result, that “Made in England” tag no longer holds as much weight as it once did. Customers now want greater clarity on the exist origin of their footwear, which has narrowed the scope of “Made in England,” down to one area in particular: Northampton.

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Beyond the Pale | A White Sneaker Round-Up.

Sep 2nd, 2014 | Categories: Footwear, Jake Gallagher, Menswear, Shoes | by Jake Gallagher

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Growing up, my dad used to refer to white sneakers as “nurse’s shoes.” Oh, how the times have changed. White sneakers are now the shoe, the singular sneaker that I can honestly say everyman needs. Regardless of your respective style, no wardrobe is complete without a pair of blanked out sneakers. From Italian leather lace-ups, to dirt cheap plimsolls, the sneaker marketplace is inundated with white sneakers of all material, shape, and price. To help you chart your own course through this sea of white, we’ve rounded up our favorite colorless lace-up sneakers. Wear ‘em till they’re no longer white, and then start all over again.





X Marks the Spot | The Converse Jack Purcell Cross Stitch Sneaker Collection

Aug 22nd, 2014 | Categories: Footwear, Shoes, Sponsored Post | by Jake Gallagher

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Great design is an intersection, lying at the point where all these different features, details, and ideas converge. The crucial component to this meeting is balance – if one point outweighs the others than the center shifts and the perfect X collapses. From the light blue JP stitching on the tongue down to the molded cork footbed, the sneakers of the Converse Jack Purcell Cross Stitch sneaker collection are perfect X’s all the way through.

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Hender Scheme Pays Hommage.

Jul 25th, 2014 | Categories: Footwear, Jake Gallagher, Japan, Shoes | by Jake Gallagher

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Leather shoes are all about potential. The real appeal of a pair of leather soles lies not in how they look today, but how they’ll look tomorrow. “Character,” is that intangible factor that compels us to purchase a pair of shoes based at least partially on its ability to age along with us. Japanese footwear label Hender Scheme is driven by this notion, as their collection of raw leather shoes are distinguished by their promise of an incomparable patina. Unlike most leather sole labels though, Hender Scheme isn’t best known for dress shoes (although they have recently begun to enter into this market), instead they focus primarily on sneaker silhouettes. These shoes, much like paying a visit to your hometown as an adult, are at once both familiar and unknown.

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Get In the Van(s).

Jul 10th, 2014 | Categories: California, Jake Gallagher, Shoes, Shoes of Summer | by Jake Gallagher

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“Man, I need Vans.”

From an Anaheim, California warehouse in 1966 Paul Van Doren churned out the first pair of Vans. They were basic canvas creations, outfitted with a diamond patterned sole and compact rows of laces, but before long those rubber sneakers would send southern California, and eventually the rest of the world into a frenzy.

Today, you can still walk into really any shoe store in the world and pick up a pair of Vans that looks almost identical to the pair that Van Doren produced back in the late sixties. While their contemporary models are now made abroad (come on guys, where’s the Made in the USA Vans collection we’ve all been waiting for) they do still retain that laid-back, easy wearing vibe that made them so damn popular nearly a half century ago. What’s best about Vans is that their irresistible simplicity has made them an ideal platform for countless obscure patterns, collaborations, and revamps. We’ve rounded out ten of our favorite Vans from the past year or so to add some rubber to your summertime shoe rotation.





An Ode to Beat Up White Bucks.

Jun 30th, 2014 | Categories: ACL Endorses, Jake Gallagher, Shoes, Shoes of Summer | by Jake Gallagher

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White bucks are the blank canvas of menswear. Each year, as the temperature rises, they reemerge like red soled birds flying south for the season, primed in a flat white coat that will be marked up, dinged out, and just plain dirty come Fall. There’s something unnatural about a pristine white buck – it’s too clean, too pristine, not worn in enough. On the other hand a beat-up buck proves that you’ve been living, and living well. Each pockmark and spot on a pair of bucks is earned and from that first time you nick up a fresh pair of bucks, you’ll be recording a seasons worth of wear and tear. As designer, and legendary buck wearer (seriously he’s been wearing them for over forty years straight) JP Williams puts it “they take on your personality.” So, here’s to a season of worth of grass stains and spilled cocktails, because a beat up buck is just a better buck.