The peak of the traditional shoemaking is usually considered to be somewhere around the 1900s, when the competition was enormous, both completely handmade shoes and machine-made shoes were sold en masse, and the knowledge in shoemaking was very great. With the increased interest in classical shoes and the spreading internet makes possible, we are now in the most competitive period in decades, which also benefits the development. One example is the effort to find new variants of material, where the above suede grain is one such example.
The shoes in the picture is from Gaziano & Girling, but there are also other manufacturers who’ve started using suede grain in different variants. This is done by putting fine suede hides through the same presses as you do with the regular embossed grain leather. The result is that the suede fibers are compressed a lot and can maintain the pattern.
There are many other examples of more or less new things being done to stand out in the globalized shoe world, and us customers benefit from it through increased choices.