The web tip - Die, Workwear article on bespoke shoemaking

The blog Die, Workwear is an establishment in the more serious menswear sphere, with often long in-depth articles on various aspects of men’s style. Most recently he has published what’s could be described as an essay on the history of bespoke shoemaking, with focus on the UK and how internet is saving bespoke shoemaking.


Derek Guy, based in San Francisco, has been writing the menswear blog Die, Workwear for many years now, and also regularly publish articles on Put This On and has written for various newspapers in the US. He’s also a well-known face (or rather the former attorney general Elliot Richardson is, Derek’s “internet avatar”) on Styleforum, and in recent times his Twitter account including nifty menswear memes has been favoured by Twitter’s algorithms making him a “celebrity” in wider circles.

There’s a lot of interesting articles on shoes written on Die, Workwear, since the basic Tumblr blog setup doesn’t have any menu or such you best find them using the search field. His probably best article on shoes is the latest published though, a two part article with the headline: “Sole Survivors: How the Internet is Saving Bespoke Shoemaking“.

Peal & Co

Peal & Co order sheet from the 19th century. Pictures above: Die, Workwear

It’s a well-written piece which goes summarise the history of how the bespoke shoe business has developed, mainly in the UK, since the 1850’s up until today. With the help of Daniel Wegan, Nicholas Templeman, Emiko Matsuda and William Efe-Laborde he then tries to understand the situation we’re at today, and why. It’s maybe a bit harsh at times and a bit too categorical in my eyes, but overall, a very interesting read I highly recommend.