The praised Japanese brand Miyagi Kogyo now gets its first retailer in Europe, when Norwegian Skomaker Dagestad (which of course has an online store) starts selling their shoes. Very well-made RTW at a good price.
Miyagi Kogyo is often called Japan’s Edward Green, as its aesthetics reminds a lot about the British premium brand. Kogyo is one of Japan’s oldest still active shoe factories, founded in 1941 at the request of the military. In peace after World War II, the company has made various types of shoes, mainly Private Label production for various luxury brands. For the Tokyo store World Footwear Gallery, they started making shoes under the company’s own name, and from there they have received a good reputation. They are part of Japan’s Shoes Export Platform, Jsep, which works to establish Japanese brands in the EU ahead of the Free Trade Agreement, which will enter into force next year (JSEP will also come to the super trunk in Stockholm on September 29th).
Now, however, it is not a store in a non-EU country that is the first to offer Kogyo in Europe, Norwegian Skomaker Dagestad (Norway has no customs on shoes from Japan so that they trade as we do in the EU from next year already today). They currently have two models, one is Kogyo’s popular split toe derby in black and medium-brown leather, with a so-called HAF sole (double leather sole in front, single at the waist). And a semi brogue derby which Dagestad developed themselves together with Kogyo, which they have in a dark brown leather and medium brown suede, with single leather sole. Both are on a classic round toe last, which fits European feet well, I have tried them myself and fit good, are normal in size. More sizes than the ones in stock now will be added within a couple of weeks, and in addition to these models, there will also be a chukka in autumn, and more models later on.
In Japan, Kogyo usually has Japanese leather, albeit fine, but Dagestad has chosen to spec the shoes with high quality parts of European leather, from the tanneries Annonay and Charles F Stead, offering really good quality. Prices are then slightly higher than in Japan, they amount to about €590 (5,450 NOK) for the semi brouge, and about €690 crowns (6,450 NOK) for the split toe with the hand stiched upper. Customers outside Norway receive VAT refund after purchase, but will then pay VAT in their home country. A lot of shoes for the prize, either way.