Review: Loake 1880 Badminton country brogue from Pediwear
During the summer months, I enjoy wearing tassel loafers paired with a linen suit. However, as the temperature drops my go to shoes are thick sole brogues. Courtesy of Pediwear, I received the Loake 1880 Badminton, a premium heavy country brogue with Dainite soles. Pediwear is purveyor of fine footwear and leather accessories. Pediwear was founded in 1976 by Barry Small. It started as a family run retail shop in Halifax, UK. In 1999, Pediwear expanded into 2 e-commerce sites: www.pediwear.co.uk and www.shoesinternational.co.uk. ShoesInternational.co.uk offers a wide range of ladies and mens shoes, accessories and luggage items. While Pediwear.co.uk specialize in fine english footwear such as Loake, Barker, Trickers, Grenson & Alfred Sargent. Pediwear pride themselves on helping each customers discussing their requirements and fitting. During my ordering process, Stephen, Pediwear’s Loake Expert, was very helpful in finding the correct size & width for my feet.
As standard in the Loake 1880 line, it comes in a sturdy, navy blue shoe box, 2 set of laces, pamphlet and a dust bag. The dust bag will prevent any accumulation of dust or dirt, which can cause drying. In addition, I received a hand written Thank You note.
In 1880, three brothers, Thomas, John and William founded Loake in Kettering, Northamptonshire. Today, five generations and more than 130 years later, Loake continue to uphold its tradition by making premium grade Goodyear welted shoes in Kettering, England, in the same factory that the three brothers built in 1894. The Loake 1880 and Loake Shoemakers ranges are still made in England and have become a firm favourite with customers around the world. The process required to make a pair of Goodyear welted Loake shoes involves approximately 75 components and 200 separate operations. From start to finish, it takes 8 weeks to complete. The Loake 1880 collection is one of most handsome, comfortable and durable shoes.
Goodyear Welted is a particular type of shoe construction with origins going back over 300 years. The Goodyear Welted construction is expensive, time consuming and requires highly skilled craftsmanship. It is still considered the finest method of shoe construction today.
To date, Loake has produced over 50 millions pairs of Goodyear welted shoes and exported to more than 50 countries.
The brogue was originally designed in Scotland and Ireland as a working shoes. Early brogues were made with heavy, untanned perforated leather and thick sole for stomping around the country side. The purpose of these perforations was to allow water to drain from the shoes. The Badminton is a quintessential country brogue with wingtip perforations, pebble grain leather and durable Dainite soles. Unlike leather soles, the Dainite rubber provide excellent traction on rainy & snowy days.
Here is a comprassion between the Badminton and an Italian Blake Stitch chukka boots. The Badminton is a little bulky due to the soft round last and storm welt stitch. A storm welt is a band of leather which is sewn into the interface between the shoe upper and the sole. It keep the water from getting into the upper. However, the last is still elegant to be pair with a tweed or flannel suit. Badminton is based on the 026 G width boot last. Loake’s most popular boot last are the 024 and 026. Both are very similar. The 024 is soft square toe while the 026 is a soft round toe.
According to the Pediwear website: THE 024 LAST – Shoes built on the 024 last are typically country styled wear, this means that the last is built slightly on the generous side. Traditionally this extra space was to allow for the wearing of thicker socks to take up the extra space, as most customers now wear thin to medium socks the excess room should be taken into consideration. A more slender foot will need a reduction in size by a half; we think that this may also be necessary for an average width foot.
THE 026 LAST – The thing to note about this last is that it is built in two width fittings; as such styles built in the F fit will NOT fit the same as the G fit which is very important to recognise. The 026 in the F fit is quite comparable to the Capital with maybe a fraction more space in the toe due to a more traditional style; however we do not think this will cause a problem to the standard foot and your usual size should suffice. The G fit is built with a few millimetres more width; because of this and the toe room this fitting will feel about half a size bigger than the F.
In term of sizing, I’m a size 11 US on the Brannok device which is a 10 UK. Stephen, Pediwear’s Loake Expert, suggest to size down 0.5 due to the generous width. I ended up with the 9.5 UK and its a perfect fit. It took about 1 week to break in the shoes. During that period, I walk around the house in thick socks before wearing them out in public. After that, the leather & footbed fully moulded to my feet. I can easily wear this shoe from 9am – 5pm without any problem. They are very comfortable. It’s a workhorse in my shoe rotation. If you live in inclement climate, the Dainite sole works great on slippery city streets.
A country brogue is smart investment for any man’s wardrobe. With a shoemaking heritage dating back to the 1880s, it’s no surprise that Loake offers up the perfect pair. The Badminton are expertly crafted from rich dark-brown leather that will stay looking great for years to come. Wear them with dark denim to upgrade your casual look or with a tweed suit for a smart look. More importantly, Loake is granted a Royal Warrant of Appointment to HM The Queen. With a purchase of Loake Shoes of over 150.00 GBP, Pediwear offer a free shoe tree or free shipping world wide.
Order your Loake shoes today at http://www.pediwear.co.uk
Tel: +44 (0)1422 367609