A Fine Man Once Said:

"Part of the 10 million I spent on gambling, part of it on booze, and part of it on women. The rest I spent foolishly."

- George Raft

Sunday, January 6, 2013

Gaziano & Girling's Rothschild via Bespoke England

Gaziano & Girling have amassed quite a following during the company's short existence. I had shied away from the shoes only because I knew that my patience would be sorely tested by the usual 8-12 week waiting period for the company's ready-to-wear models. I had admired the Rothschild, G&G's wingtip offering, from afar for some time but the lag time always dissuaded me from making the purchase.

I finally decided bite the bullet and order a pair - wait time be damned. After reading so many positive reviews of the service at Bespoke England, I called Nick A. to inquire about size and availability. As I expected, Nick indicated that the wait would be about 8-12 weeks. He was also extremely helpful regarding sizing, based on my sizing in other brands such as EG, Lobb, and C&J. After confirming my order for a pair of Rothschilds in vintage chestnut on the DG70 last (with extra burnishing on the toe box), I settled in for the long wait after convincing myself that this would be the ultimate Christmas gift to myself.

Then things took an unexpected turn for the better. After only a few days, Nick emailed with an update - the shoe would be ready in about 6 weeks. Great news, I thought. The shoes would arrive before Christmas, but I wasn't complaining. But it got better - a few days after that, Nick emailed again to let me know that he had just been around to the G&G factory and the shoes were basically ready, but for a last bit of finishing! I'm still not sure exactly what happened, but the end result was a pair of G&G Rothschilds which took about two weeks to arrive at my door after my initial email to Nick.

As for the shoes, well, to put it simply: they are incredible. The vintage chestnut color is exquisite, as is the extra burnishing on the toe cap. The sole-work is quite impressive, and the variety of bespoke details on a ready-to-wear put G&G ahead just about every other English shoemaker. If I had to nitpick, I would say that I find the lasts just a bit too pointy or elongated. Personally, I would have to say that I prefer Edward Green's 888 last or John Lobb's 7000. But this is a minor quibble, as the DG70 is a unique round-toe last with its own distinct silhouette, and is well-worth adding to your collection.

Finally, a heartfelt thank you to Nick Anderson at Bespoke England, an absolutely pleasure to meet and work with. Nick has a wealth of knowledge that is at your service when choosing a model that will suit your needs and fit you perfectly.

PS The best lasted trees on the market for ready-to-wear shoes? Quite possibly.

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