Wayman Bespoke has been gaining more and more interest in recent time, the German / Chinese brand who’ve launched a successful ”remote bespoke” service with hand welted shoes made to a high level at an excellent price. After developing both the shoes and the service since the brand started accepting orders about a year ago, they now have a very interesting offer on hand.
I’ve been following Wayman Bespoke since the middle of 2019 when they were in the development phase, up until the test phase early spring and now when they are fully up and running. Intentionally I’ve been waiting to write about them, since it’s been evident that they found new ways to work and tested various ways especially with the ordering methods to reach a good solution that is proving to work well. Now I feel that they are there, and also the shoes have been improved, last tweak with some finishing details was just this week, and I’m sure it will continue to develop, but that they have reached a good base to work from now. It’s not the first brand to offer bespoke over distance, but they are possibly the first to do it in this systematic way, and it’s a really interesting approach to merging the possibilities with modern technique and a globalised world with an old type of service/product like bespoke shoes.
The man behind the brand is the German Simon Wegmann, a shoe nerd who have complicated feet and struggled a lot to find shoes that fit well, which led him to start the project. He collaborates with a workshop in Shanghai, China, where they have a lastmaker making all lasts Wayman Bespoke and then a small team who make the shoes, with one assistant only working for Wayman Bespoke to keep things on track for them and to be the link to Simon. Simon sources a lot of the leathers in Europe, and the shoes are then hand welted with hand stitched sole seam at the waist, and machine stitched in the front half (as base, you can choose fully handmade 12 spi sole stitch as well, or Norwegian, at an upcharge). The shoes really have the bespoke look, with very closed cut heels, tapered if one wish, narrow bevelled or fiddle back waists, and so on.
But the special part then is the solution with only offering a “remote bespoke” service. Everything is basically like traditional bespoke, but with measurement and fittings done over distance. Measurements and outlines are taken by the client (and or someone with them), where a clear guide also including film is used, and help from Simon can be had if necessary. After the lasts have been made, which not only have smaller changes to base lasts but proper personalised ones, simple fitting shoes are sent to the customer and a fitting is done over video chat (this was not standard earlier, but now is not optional, to ensure a good first pair). Potential necessary adjustments to the lasts are made, and then the ordered shoes are finalised. The trial fitting period (of course only necessary for the first pair) takes approximately four weeks, then the making of the final shoes takes about eight weeks, so in total around twelve weeks time for a first order.
Wayman Bespoke’s shoes cost from €840 for their house styles, but bespoke patterns can be made where prices vary depending on what type of pattern and materials that are chosen. They have an excellent ordering form on the site where all options and the potential price change for each are very clear. Fitting process and test shoes for first customer cost €130, landing at just below €1,000 for first order (lasted shoe trees can be had for €70 more). All prices including VAT. For fully customised lasts and shoes made to this standard, it’s surely a good deal, and from what I’ve gathered from people who’ve tried Wayman Bespoke out the remote process seem to be working well. Especially if you have complicated feet and haven’t easy access to bespoke makers nearby, and/or are intrigued by the relatively low price, this can surely be an option worth exploring.