It’s confirmed! On Saturday May 7 it’s finally time again for one of the world’s largest open event on classic shoes, The London Super Trunk Show, organised by Shoegazing and The Shoe Snob. In the middle of London on 12 Regent Street, we gather more than ten brands from all over the world, interesting partners, there will be the World Championships in Shoe Shining and Shoe Patina, plus the World Championships in Shoemaking will have it’s award ceremony and competition shoes displayed. Below all info about the event. Do not miss this!
The situation with the coronavirus turned the world upside down. Therefore we first postponed the event from April 25 2020, when the situation started to escalate in spring, to October 10, then to May 8 2021, then to October 9 2021, now to the final date in May 2022. Now, the situation with the pandemic is much better in general, there’s no travel restrictions or restrictions on amount of people at events etc. in the UK, and we organisers together with the participants and the venue feel that we can, finally, go ahead with this great day.
This also means that we have been prolonging the qualifications for the world championships in shoe shining and shoe patina until March 13 2021, more info about that in this post.
This article is an updated version of the original invitation article, with all current dates, times etc.
Location: Showcase.co, 12 Regent Street, St. James, London.
Date: Saturday May 7 2022
Full schedule for the day:
11:00-19:00 Trunk show open for the public, FREE OF CHARGE AND NO REGISTRATION NEEDED. Exhibitions with Acme Shoemaker, Bridlen, Catella Shoemaker (Daniel Wegan), CNES Shoemaker, Modum Shoes, Mori of Shoemakers, Norman Vilalta, Paolo Scafora, Septieme Largeur, and Skolyx / TLB Mallorca. Also exhibitions with the event’s main partner Saphir (shoe care) and partners Bresciani and Cad & the Dandy (tailoring), plus shoemaking championships partner Master Shoemakers (book). On display are all competition shoes in the World Championships in Shoemaking.
11.00-19.00 Free Shoe Shining Service by Saphir. Have your shoes shined by one of the best shoe shiners in the world, Samuel Norsworthy, Tricker’s / The Valet.
11.15-17.15 (1 hour break 14.45-15.45) Final of the World Championships in Shoe Patina in collaboration with Saphir, 1st prize TLB Mallorca shoes. (More info in qualification post here)
15.00-15.30 Final of the World Championships in Shoe Shining in cooperation with Saphir, 1st prize shoes from Loake. (More info in qualification post here)
17:30-17:50 Award ceremony for the World Championships in Shoemaking, in collaboration with Kirby Allison’s Hanger Project and Master Shoemakers. The top ten including the three podium positions are presented. In the prize pool is £6,000 (€6,700 / $7,800), plus being exhibited at Isetan Men’s, Tokyo, and at other places around the world. (More info in the Call for competition)
19.00 Event closes.
Here’s the Facebook event page where you’ll get all the latest updates. As always, we highly appreciate any help with spreading the word about the event! The hashtag used before, during and after the event in social media is #supertrunk.
The London Super Trunk Show will take place at the same praised venue as 2019, Showcase.co located on 12 Regent Street. It’s just below Piccadilly Circus, across the road from the world’s nr. 1 shoe street Jermyn Street. Showcase.co has a store-front towards the road and behind this is the exhibition venue, also on street level, where we also have a bar/café serving the guests during the day. Here we gather some of the most interesting shoe brand’s around today, all of whom are not easily accessible in the UK, which always has been an important part of these events. This year we’ve done a larger swap of exhibitors, and a vast majority are brand new to the event, and have never exhibited in the UK before. We always strive to get a good mix of types of shoes, price ranges, origin and so on. We who organise the event are Jesper Ingevaldsson of the blog Shoegazing and Justin FitzPatrick of The Shoe Snob blog.
As always, the event is open for everyone with no registration needed between 11.00-19.00. This is the fourth edition of the London super trunk, and last time we reached the 1000 visitors bar, with people coming from all over the world coming to see, try, buy and order shoes, meet fellow shoe aficionados, see interesting scene events and have a good time in general. The super trunk is now an established meeting place for people from various parts of the industry and for shoe interested customers. Not only people from England, but from all over the world, we have customers, shoe industry representatives and shoemakers coming.
Here’s a brief summary of all the exhibitors (more info about them all below). Acme Shoemaker, the highly praised Chinese maker of fully handmade RTW, MTO and bespoke, starting at £1,000 / €1,200. Bridlen is a brand from India doing Goodyear welted shoes the old-school way without gemming, at an impressive price of around £210/€250. Catella Shoemaker is the newly launched brand of Daniel Wegan, world champion in shoemaking 2019, offering bespoke shoes at absolute highest level. CNES Shoemaker is Vietnam’s largest manufacturer of Goodyear welted shoes with a very good reputation, a lot of shoes for the about £195/€230 they cost. Modum Shoes from Germany, who aims at bringing affordable bespoke into the digital era with 3D scanning, starting at £460 / €550. Mori of Shoemakers is merging bespoke and factory-made in a very interesting way, with Chinese hand welted shoes starting at £510/€600.
Norman Vilalta from Spain started as a bespoke shoemaker but now also offers a progressive range of RTW shoes that cost around £720/€850, plus a top RTW range that is made to bespoke standard. Paolo Scafora from Naples, Italy, makes hand welted premium RTW with a lot of flair and excellent patinas, price is about £850/€1000. Septieme Largeur is one of the most popular brands of Goodyear welted shoes in France, with lovely looking stuff available for £230/€275. Skolyx brings its own affordable Goodyear welted range made on Majorca, priced at only £185/€220, and the praised brand TLB Mallorca with the impressive Artista range, loads of shoes for the price of £360/€425.
All brands will bring a lot of shoes to display and to try on and all will take orders, plus that some of them will sell shoes directly at the event. For those who offer bespoke services you can reserve an appointment in advance, or take the plunge and get measured and order on site. As mentioned, read more about them all below.
The ones making this event possible is our partners. Main partner is the leading premium shoe care brand Saphir, whose Medaille d’Or range is considered the best shoe care products in the world by many shoe aficionados and professional shoe shiners. They will exhibit at the event as usual, and bring a bunch of their products to sell. As partners we have the famous Italian sock company Bresciani, arguably making some of the finest socks in the world. We have the modern British tailoring firm Cad & the Dandy, who have been a revitalising factor at the famous Savile Row with really affordable tailoring. They will give a teaser to what they offer, and talk to visitors about all the tailoring possibilities they have. Also partner and helping us out with lots of things is The Valet, where Tom Beecroft (previously The Jaunty Flaneur) has taken his shoe care service and teamed up with alterations tailors and dry cleaner expertise.
Apart from the exhibitions we’ll also have the stage area where some of the event’s highlights will take place. It starts already directly after opening, at 11.15, with the final of the World Championships in Shoe Patina, organised in collaboration with Saphir. Three finalists will have five hours (with one hour break at the middle of the day) to paint a pair of TLB Mallorca crust leather shoes. Winner who’ve made the best patina according to the jury will get the shoes, after they’ve been on a world tour together with the top trio in the shoemaking contest. A bit more info on the patina contest below, and much more in the more info in qualification post here.
In the afternoon at 15.00 we have the final of the World Championships in Shoe Shining, also this in collaboration with Saphir, where the winner will receive a pair of shoes from Loake. Three finalists who has made it through the qualifications (open at the same time as patina contest qualifications, more info here) will receive one Loake 1880 Aldwych Mahogany, a can of Saphir Medaille d’Or Pate de Lux and one can of Mirror Gloss, water, brush and polishing cloth and have 20 minutes to polish the shoe as beautiful as possible. The winner will also qualify for the Shoe Shining Champion of Champions in Tokyo, Japan, which will take place again in three years time, similar to the contest last autumn (read more about it here).
Also, as presented thoroughly in this article, we are once again organising the World Championships in Shoemaking, in collaboration with the webshop Kirby Allison and the book project Master Shoemakers. In the prize pool is £6,000 (€6,700 / $7,700), three handmade awls by Phil Norsworthy, and a chance to be showcased for shoe lovers around the world. A contest that has been a huge success, with lots of interest both in the industry and media etc, and with shoe entries that are reminiscent of the most amazing footwear we see in museums. We have had over 90 registered entries, and the shoes that are sent in will all be on display during the day, and at 17.30 at the stage area we will present the top ten with the three podium positions, including the world champion.
As always we will live stream from the different championship competitions and the award ceremonies, on Shoegazing’s Youtube channel and here on Shoegazing.com, as well as on Saphir Medaille d’Or’s Instagram.
Please follow the Facebook page for the event here where you’ll get all the latest updates, let us know you plan to attend and spread the word. And if you can, do take the time to visit the event, for shoe interested people, it’s not many other places you would like to be more, both considering the shoes shown and for all the people gathering. Take the chance to have a weekend in this great city topped up with the London Super Trunk Show.
And since the event is built on it being worth for the brands coming, the more shoes that are purchased or ordered at the event, the better is the chance for it continuing being a growing part of the shoe world.
Hope to see many of you in London on Saturday May 7!
Below some more detailed info about all the exhibitors at the event and the scene happenings:
Acme Shoemaker was launched last year (read more in this review or here on my second pair), and they have made a huge impact already with their highly refined shoes. Acme is an ambitious project, with serious investments behind it, and supported by the founders of the famous shoe stores Medallion Shoes. It’s a workshop with over 15 people based in Beijing, with Oliver Tang (previously at among others Xibao) as the workshop manager.
All shoes are made to the same standard (apart from a basic range of casual styles which is cemented), no matter if it’s RTW, MTO, MTM or full bespoke. Here, all are manufactured to the same top level as their bespoke shoes, so hand lasted, hand welted, handmade sole stitch, blind welt waists, real leather heel and toe stiffeners, and so on – and with a refined making and finishing. Welted RTW cost a bit over £1,000 / €1,200 and MTO about €1,400, this is including lasted shoe trees. Of course, a lot of money, but considering what you get it’s still highly affordable.
Bridlen is an Indian factory who have teamed up with the people behind introducing Meermin in Japan (which was their first market), and have been revamping their whole offering. Bridlen will introduce their new top range at the super trunk, which they will focus on for the European market.
What’s interesting with this range is that it’s Goodyear welted shoes, with the welt seam made directly to a full leather insole, the old-school way without gemming (a canvas rib glued to the insole). What’s even more interesting is that they are able to offer shoes with this make at an impressive price of around £210 / €250.
Catella Shoemaker is without a doubt the youngest brand at the event, and perhaps also the most hyped. Since Daniel Wegan, reigning world champion and previously head of the bespoke department of Gaziano & Girling, announced his own brand a few weeks ago, bespoke shoe lovers around the world have been raving and drooling over the few things that Catella Shoemakers has shown. And the client list is already long.
With Catella Daniel Wegan aims to persuade his idea of the perfect bespoke shoes, with the absolute highest level of making, and a design mixing classic British and more contemporary continental flair. Prices starts at £4,300 / €5,100, plus £600 / €700 for the making of the last at the first order.
CNES Shoemaker is one of Vietnam’s largest manufacturers of Goodyear welted shoes. At home, they are huge, with their own stores in many cities, and they are also established in other markets in Asia such as Singapore and South Korea. Now they have also started to look towards Europe, and when the brand visited the Stockholm super trunk 2019 the reception was sensational.
CNES have a very wide range of shoes, both very dressy and elegant models, sometimes with patina, but also more casual models and boots. The shoes look a lot more expensive than the around £195/€230, and they also make hand welted shoes for just a bit more.
The German brand Modum is a different player in the world of quality shoes, a brand that aims at bridging together historic traditional craftsmanship with the modern digital era. This with the use of a 3D scan mobile app, 3D printed lasts, and shoes Goodyear welted by a factory in Portugal. Founded by two shoe interested engineers, Milad Malfi and Philip Erik Jahn, and Matthias Vickermann and Martin Stoya of the German bespoke shoemaker Vickermann & Stoya. After three years of developing the software together, and working closely with the factory to have them being able to handle the unique lasts and patterns in an efficient way, a lot of testing and sampling done, they are now just about to roll out wider.
When customers order, they use a phone app to make an exact digital scan of their feet. Some personal data on fit preferences are noted, and then one choose the model and specifications as when ordering regular MTO. The last is then 3D printed, patterns automatically produced with their algorithms, and then the shoes are produced the traditional way for midrange Goodyear welted shoes. Modum should especially interest people who have a hard time finding good fitting RTW shoes, but can’t afford traditional bespoke. Price starts at £460 / €550.
Mori of Shoemakers
Mori of Shoemakers has a slightly different approach than most brands, in their mission to merge bespoke and factory-made shoes. The brand is founded by Maslow So, and base collection is designed by Hong Kong based shoemaker Masaru Okuyama, and a new bespoke maker will have a small capsule collection launched each year.
The lasts and designs are made by the bespoke makers, while the shoes are made in a Chinese factory. They are hand welted with handmade sole stitch at the waist, machine at the front, and soles and finishing which are very advancely made. Price from £510 / €600.
Norman Vilalta has become an institution in the shoe world. The charismatic Argentinian-Spaniard learned bespoke shoemaking at Stefano Bemer in Italy, and now works from a studio in Barcelona. Bespoke is just one part nowadays though, his RTW collection has been growing steadily ever since the launch.
Norman Vilalta is known for his excellent ways of upgrading and modernising the classic shoe tradition. His RTW shoes are made in a factory in Spain and cost around £720/€850. At around twice the price he also offers a RTW/MTO range made fully by hand to the same standard as his bespoke shoes, lovely looking stuff.
Paolo Scafora is based in Naples, Italy, a brand that has developed their style in recent years, still distinctly Italian shoes, but with more classically styled last shapes and tighter sole edges. The shoes are hand welted with machine-made sole stitch, and have leather stiffeners both in heel and toe. Superbly made.
Scafora’s prices start at around £830/€980. The MTO surcharge is 20% of the base price, which is relatively low, and the options are endless if you’re interested in making something unique. The brand has gained popularity in recent year’s with retailers in many placers over the world nowadays.
Septieme Largeur is one of the most successful French brands of Goodyear welted shoes, and has been around for a decade. Run by the legendary shoe entrepreneur Marcos Fernandez and his nephew Mathieu Priess, they have been doing everything right in this rather fierce competition in the domestic market, and has also become a large international player.
The shoes are Goodyear welted in Spain, often with rather slim wood pegged waists and elegant sleek lasts. The amount of models offered are astonishing, and they continuously launch new interesting models and patinas. Priced at £230/€275
Skolyx / TLB Mallorca
Skolyx is a Swedish based online store, which sell a lot of shoe trees and shoe care, but are increasingly famous for its excellent selection of Spanish-made Goodyear welted shoes. The host Jesper Ingevaldsson of Shoegazing works for the company. Skolyx has a private label range of classic models produced on Mallorca with good specs for the price, things like leather board heel stiffeners and leathers from among others French tanneries Annonay and Du Puy. Starting price only £185/€220.
They also sell TLB Mallorca, who has made a mark since they entered the market a couple of years ago, not least with the top range Artista who pushes the bar for Goodyear welted shoes in the midrange price segment. Incredibly narrow waists with bevelling going in under the heel, close cut and finely santed sole and heel edges, tight sole stitching, real leather heel stiffeners, and more. At £360 / €425 TLB Artista offers some of the most bang for the buck on the market, and the regular TLB range at is also great stuff at £310 / €365.
Saphir is one of the leading premium shoe care product manufacturers in the world. The French brand is owned by Avel, which also has brands like Tarrago, Dasco and La Cordonnerie Anglais under their branch. Known for both the high quality of care and protection products, as well as for being very easy to use. The standard Saphir range holds a massive amount of products, everything from your regular shoe cream, wax polish, cleaners, waterproofing sprays etc. to more specialised products like leather dye or leather repair pastes.
For shoe nerds and professionals, the premium shoe care range Saphir Medaille d’Or is the go to choice. The name comes from the gold medal it received at the International Exhibition in Paris 1925 due to the high quality of the products. Still today the creams and waxes are produced by the same recipe. But since then they have also added a number of other premium shoe care products to the range, and they constantly develop their range with new products. For example we have Mirror Gloss wax polish which makes it easier to achieve a real high gloss shine on the toe and heel of your shoes, a product that instantly regained high popularity. And just recently they introduced several new specialised leather cleaners to the range. All Medaille d’Or products contain only natural products: bees wax, carnauba wax, essence of turpentine, lanolin, mink oil, neatsfoot, vegetal materials and so on.
This is definitely one of the foremost sock brands in the world, Bresciani, who’ve manufactured socks in the Italian city Spirano since 1970. The founder Mario Bresciani first worked together with the socks and knitwear company Maglificio Avon Celli, and many of their historical designs and fabric references are still used today. Mario’s serious and passionate work earned him the title of Knight of Merit of the Italian Republic in 2009 and the Star of Labour Merit in 2012.
Bresciani’s line-up of quality socks is extensive. They have some more modern and playful stuff, but of course it’s their luxurious men’s dress socks that they are most famous for, where they have versions in variuous wool-, cotton- and silk mixes as well as super exclusive stuff like 100% cashmere socks. Not least the excellent fit and comfort is what customers love with them.
Cad & the Dandy
The tailoring firm Cad & the Dandy was launched in 2008 by the two bankers Ian Meiers and James Sleater, together with the experienced tailor John Debois. They wanted to modernise British tailoring, and has since the start grown to be the biggest tailor on Savile Row, recruiting experienced tailors from among others Huntsman, Anderson & Sheppard and Norton & Sons.
The main reason for the success is the low prices offered, with three different ranges of bespoke tailoring, from a fully machine made (though still full canvas) range starting at only about £800 / €950 up to the premium bespoke offering made completely according to the Savile Row Bespoke Association’s rules, which starts at £1,300 / €1,500. All garments are produced in one of their three workshops in the city of London. At the event, they will also be joined by the British luxury slipper maker Albert Sleep, who they share their space with on Savile Row. Sleep has a huge selection of various slippers and opera pumps, which all can be had with personal monograms, some examples will be displayed on their table.
World Championships in Shoe Patina
The World Championships in Shoe Patina is organised in collaboration with Saphir. Three finalists will have five hours to paint a pair of TLB Mallorca crust leather shoes as remarkable as possible. Shoe patina is something that has grown massively the past decades, and today we have specialists around the world working full time with painting shoes, as well as a lot of shoe brands that offer patina services or has painted shoes as a given part of their standard ranges.
The World Championships in Shoe Patina have a similar set-up as the shoe shining event. We have a a qualification round open (read more here), where people are to send in images of a pair of painted shoes, where a jury consisting of us organisers, representatives from Saphir and TLB Mallorca, as well as the professional shoe patina makers Tom Beecroft (The Valet), Neus Benavent (previously Gaziano & Girling and Corthay), Mathieu Preiss (Septieme Largeur) and Norman Vilalta. We will go through and pick out the three best patinas. What will be judged is the quality of the patina, the technique and how beautiful it is made. Qualification is open for three weeks.
The three finalists will then paint the TLB Mallorca Artista crust leather shoe during the event in London. They will paint for five hours between 11.15 and 17.15, with one hour break at 14.45-15.45. They will have a number of colours of Saphir leather dye to their disposal, and will bring their own brushes and equipment to work with. They will also have Saphir cream and waxes for the finishing touches. The same jury consisting of professional patina makers and shoe experts will judge how beautiful the shoes have been painted, and the quality of the paint job. Winner will be announced at the award ceremony 17.30. The world champion in shoe patina gets the TLB shoes, a shoe care package from Saphir and a glass plaquette, plus the winning shoes will be part of the world tour together with the top trio in the shoemaking contest. As mentioned, more on this when we open the qualification within a few days.
World Championships in Shoe Shining
The very popular shoe shining contest has its given place at the super trunk. At 15.00 during the event day we invite you to follow the World Championships in Shoe Shining in collaboration with Saphir, where the winner will receive a pair of shoes from Loake, a shoe care package from Saphir and a glass plaquette. In the qualification post found here you’ll get info on how to qualify by sending in pictures of a well polished shoe, from these a jury consisting of us organisers and representatives from Saphir and Loake will pick three finalists, who will compete during the London Super Trunk Show.
At the final, one Loake 1880 Aldwych in mahogany is to be polished as beautiful as possible. We’ll not only look at the highest shine, but the most beautiful polish work is rewarded. The finalists will have a can of Saphir Medaille d’Or Pate de Lux in the colour of choice, neutral Mirror Gloss wax, water, a brush, a polishing cloth of their own and a nylon cloth, and they have 20 minutes to polish the shoe. Previous year’s winners performed astonishing results in that short time, and have had a lot of attention in Asia as winners of the title. The winner will be titled the World Champion in Shoe Shining 2022, and gets to keep the shoe he (or she) has polished and its sibling, receives a glass plaquette and a kit with shoe care products from Saphir. He/she will also qualify to the Shoe Shining Champion of Champions in Tokyo, Japan, which will take place again in 2023 or 2024.
World Championships in Shoemaking
The World Championships in Shoemaking is organised by Shoegazing and The Shoe Snob, in collaboration with the webshop Kirby Allison and the book project Master Shoemakers (the book will be showcased and sold at the venue). More than 90 contestants from all over the world have registered for the championships, and previous years we are likely to see some amazing shoes made for it. Here in the official call for competition you can find all the details in how it unfolds.
But to summarise it, the contestants will make a burgundy/red brown longwing derby with a leather sole, hand welted with handmade sole stitch. The criteria that will be judged are the degree of difficulty and the execution of the making, but also the overall design/aesthetics. 1st prize is £3,000, 2nd £2,000 and 3rd £1,000, the top three will get a handmade shoemaking awl from Phil Norsworthy, plus all podium placed shoes will be exhibited at the Isetan Men’s department store in Tokyo, Japan, and at other stores in various locations around the world. As previous years we will create a small exhibition with the top three shoes (plus the patina winner’s pair), which will be on tour around the globe. Which locations next round will be presented later on.
In the jury who will review the shoes are several bespoke shoemakers and professionals within the industry, the preliminary jury members are shoemakers Jean-Michel Casalonga of Berluti (workshop manager and lastmaker in Berluti’s Paris workshop), Nicholas Templeman (previously John Lobb London), Masaru Okuyama (Japanese bespoke shoemaker, previously based in Hong Kong, now in the UK), Sebastian Tarek (independent shoemaker who previously have done outwork for many of the London West End firms), and Daniel Wegan of Catella Shoemaker, who won the contest in 2019. But to also add a slightly different view shoe experts Jesper Ingevaldsson of Shoegazing and Justin FitzPatrick of The Shoe Snob are part of the jury, and the te sponsors who are making this contest possible (together with Parker Schenecker, brother of Edmund Schenecker who was part of starting this contest and sadly passed away last year): Kirby Allison and Gary Tok, author of Master Shoemakers.
All the competition shoes will be on display at the super trunk show, and at 17.30 at the stage area we will announce the top ten shoes, and hence the podium placed ones and the world champion in shoemaking 2022.
You are very welcome to the London Super Trunk Show on Saturday May 7 2022, we aim for yet another day to remember! Thanks in advance for all your help spreading the word about the event, share this article and invite people with the Facebook event. See you all there!