Tonight the Swedish shoe store Skoaktiebolaget has its official grand opening for its new premises at Nybrogatan 23 in Stockholm, where they presented their latest addition to the brand flora: John Lobb Paris.
Most certainly know the background already, but John Lobb Paris is the phalanx of John Lobb which was bought by Hermes in the 70’s, and today has a bespokev workshop in Paris and a factory in Northampton, England, where the company’s Goodyear welted RTW shoes are manufactured (the Lobb family still owns the London based bespoke workshop). With the luxury house Hermés behind the steering wheel they have muscles that only Berluti and their owner LVMH and the Church’s owned Prada can sniff at. For example Hermés both the main French tanneries for shoe upper leather, Annonay and Du Puy, which means that the finest hides are going to themselves. They also have a wide range of lasts and models, both current and historical, and Skoaktiebolaget will likely offer some special make-ups as time goes.
Now initially they have 12 models in its range. Only leather soled shoes, a boot or two would have been nice too. But there are some very nice things in what they offer from the start as well, for example the split toe derby Harlyn in Parisian suede on the 8695-last, and the always lovely discrete quarter brogue Philip II on the classic round 7000-last in Parisian museum. About half of the models are from the premium Prestige range, half from the standard line. They have three variants of Lobb’s really nice plain cap toe oxford City II in the standard make-up, where black additionally is available in both standard width and extra wide.
Prices are now thanks to the weak pound relatively low. Models from the Classic line is priced around €950, and the top range Prestige with a more elaborate sole and narrower bevelled waist including lasted shoe trees is at about €1 280.
Skoaktiebolaget’s new premises is a clear improvement from before. Instead of the cramped feeling it had become in the previous venue since they are constantly growing, this feels airy and spacious, which is enhanced by the architectural firm Broberg & Ridderstråle has used all the generous ceiling height. The only disadvantage one can feel is that it can be perceived as almost a little bit low on shoes as it is now, but it’s positive that they have space to fill with more models and more manufacturers.