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Choose Perfect Shoes

14 Oct , 2009  

Choose Perfect Shoes

(By Bertie)

You have dreamt of it for so many nights, you have saved up each euro/pound/dollar/yen and now you’ve finally got it: your own suit from Brioni. However, when you walk down the streets, the girls don’t turn their heads to look back and Scott Schuman doesn’t ask you for a photo to post on his website…  Oh Georges “Beau” Brummel , God of the Dandies, please tell me, what’s my problem?


The problem lies in the fact that most men do not think enough about their shoes. Let me tell you this: you could have the most perfect suit from the most prestigious tailor but without beautiful shoes, it’s all over. The right pair of shoes will help lift up a middle-quality suit: nothing is impossible.

Think optimistic about it. Quality shoes are an investment. Shoes that are made with the Goodyear Welt method allow multiple sole replacements, extending the life of the footwear. So if you take care of your investment, you will keep them for a very long time: some of my shoes are more than 15 years old and I get asked frequently where I bought those new shoes.


Let me give you the rules to the game. Firstly, when you buy new shoes, make sure that you have shoe trees made out of cedar wood. This wood will better absorb the moisture and take away the smell. The shoe tree itself will help to keep the original form of your shoes. So when you are not wearing your shoes, use shoe trees! Secondly, you should not wear your shoes for two days straight to let the perspiration exit. Thirdly, regulary nourish the leather with a shoe cream; if you want your shoes to shine, you could add a drop of champaign or white wine (or a drop of water if you have a money problem due to the economic crisis), mirror effect guaranteed. This technic is called “freezing the leather”.


Shoes are a real passion for a lot of men, so perhaps tonight you will dream of going to John Lobb on St.James Street, London. This shop is the church of the beautiful shoes. Lobb has handmade his shoes for the Royal Family of Great-Britain for several generations. Kings and smarter-dressed men from all around the world have been served by Lobb ever since 1849, which is still a family-owned business. Their warehouse stacks wooden sculptures of each of their customers feet; Lobb only makes bespoke models, their prices start at € 2500 and there is 6 month delivery time. Note that you can also find Lobb ready-to-wear (property of Hermès) in some selected shops for around € 750.


It’s a lot of money for shoes, but at least you can promise your bankclerk that you will keep them marvelous for the rest of your life: your very own investment.



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  1. Lance says:

    Impressive post and great tips too!! I need some help, which brand shoe creme do you advice us to use on smooth leather shoes? Another question; does the brand or year of the champaigne matter? ;p Love it! Ps. Double monk = success

  2. Bertie says:

    Hi Lance,
    my pleasure if you find it interesting, thanks.
    I recommand using products from the brand “Saphir”, you can find them on the French website “” of course the text is in french and I don’t know if they send throughout Europe…
    You will need the leather balm “cirage crème universelle saphir” to nourrish the leather (most important !) and to shine the shoes use : “cirage pâte de luxe saphir”.
    For the “freezing method” you are right, I recommand “Dom Perignon 1988″ :-)

  3. Lance says:

    Thanks! You,re a pro Bertie! :)

  4. Karl says:

    Great article! :-)
    Will have to try the “freezing method”, but I’m not quite sure if I would use a 1988 DomP for it! ;-) :-D

  5. haha… freezing it… I’ll first try it with some white wine… it truly is a great article Bertie!!

  6. Lance says:

    I am getting thirsty reading this post and comments….

  7. Bertie says:

    ah ah ah I knew the wine freezing method would interest you !

    This technic is very old because I read somewhere that Napoleon Bonaparte (sorry I’m French) used it, Winston Churchill also did…

    To be honest I must say it works also with a drop of water…
    If someone would like to try: put the wax one your shoes with a rag, rub a little and with your finger add some drop of water (or champaign or wine), and rub again, your shoes should shine like a mirror : it’s the freezing !!!

  8. Lance says:

    John Lobb and Dom P should work together! They would make they most amazing and shiny shoes while having a party :)

  9. Bertie says:

    … you are right Lance, and when you are finished shining your shoes, you can drink the Champaign with your girlfriend : we really live in a perfect world ! ;-)

  10. ….the world of the Suitorialist through the eyes of a Suitorialist… Great job Bertie..

  11. Lance Miller says:

    @ Bertie; touché! :) Tomorrow night there’s FRANK (Friday Night Drink) in the Cruise Terminal in Rotterdam. The champaign isn’t good, but the girls are! :)
    @ I am presenting a case to MBA students at the RSM Erasmus University tomorrow and will be with them the entire day without a pc. So if I don’t find time to see you here in the comments. Have a good Friday and we catch up over the weekend!

    I am curious what you will think of my post on Saturday. If men …… are hot or not.



  12. Karl says:

    So, drink the water with the girlfriend and polish your shoes with champagne? Or the other way round? Hmm…depends on shoes and girlfriend, I think! :-P ;-) :-D

    But anyway, your article is great! It’s interesting and the way it is written is also great, always a little bit ironic! I like it! :-)

    So then, best of luck for your presentation tomorrow! :-) You are a student or you are the lecturer?
    Have a nice weekend! See you here! :-)

  13. haha… nice one Karl!

  14. Lance says:

    @ Karl, thanks man you too! I was a lecturer today and it was my first time and it was great!! Cool mba students from 36 different nationalities. They came up with some impressive solutions for the case!! Then we went wild water rafting or flowboarding @ zoetermeer’s Dutch Water Dreams; grand!!

    What are your plans for the weekend?

    Mine; work work work ;)

  15. Karl says:

    Hey, sounds great! Congratulations! :-)
    Heard of Dutch Water Dreams, must be great! :-)

    Weekend? Hm…work a little bit, some drinks saturday night! ;-) Chill out on Sunday!

  16. I really do need to up my shoe game.