It should have been obvious from my piece back in May on Gaziano & Girling’s new Deco line that I would be very tempted by them, and this is the result a few months later.
They are gorgeous shoes, whole-cut Oxfords in a luscious black calf. Apart from a light bit of bleaching on the toe, the styling is kept to the last and waist treatment. But what style. A narrow rounded waist spreads flauntingly into a square sole, creating the so-called spade effect. The toe box is long, though the shoe is also deceptively wide across the vamp.
That is probably where I went slightly wrong with the sizing. I was concerned that the last would be too narrow, and so went for a 9 rather than my normal 8 1/2. As a result the shoes are a little too big. You can see that in the wearing (about a dozen wears so far) they are creasing in a few different lines on the vamp. That’s always a risk with whole-cuts, of course, but it is exacerbated in this case.
The style itself will not be to everyone’s taste. For me, they are a wonderfully sharp alternative to more classic, subtle business shoes like the Cleverleys I wrote about last week. Perhaps with silk laces for black tie, rather than meetings. Then again, even those Cleverleys are sharper than the more square-toed Cleverleys I got in the sale two years ago.
Incidentally, in the picture above you can get a better sense of the ‘gap’ around the waist that gives shoes such as these such delicacy – as I referred to in that Cleverley piece last week. That’s the most exciting aesthetic thing about bespoke shoes, for me.
For more details on Deco, see feature here.