Review: Loake 1880 Naylor derby shoes

For the past month, I’ve been trying to build a more versatile business casual wardrobe. I wanted a pair of derby shoes that I can wear for client meetings to summer weddings. Courtesy of Pediwear, I’ve been wear testing the Loake 1880 Naylor, a medallion toe derby. The Naylor is the perfect crossover shoe. The dark brown colour is particularly good at bridging the smart-casual style and goes well with any colour trousers.

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, Pediwear’s Loake Expert, was very helpful in finding the correct size & width for my feet.

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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.

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Loake 1880

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.

Derby vs Oxford

Men’s lace-up dress shoes come in two styles, the Oxford and the Derby. The difference is the Oxford has closed lacing and the tongue is stitched to the vamp, whereas on the Derby the lacing is open and the tongue is part of the same piece of leather as the vamp. The Derby is the more versatile casual style. It pairs great with a grey suit to jeans and chinos.

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Construction  

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The Goodyear welted process was invented in 1869 by Charles Goodyear, Jr. Goodyear welt is the oldest, most labor intensive, and most durable shoe method of construction. Essentially, the upper part of the shoe is shaped over the last and fastened on by sewing a leather known as the ‘welt’ to the inner and upper sole. The welt forms a cavity which is then filled with a cork material.

The process involves approximately 75 components and 200 separate operations. The whole process, from start to finish, takes eight weeks to complete. The main benefit of footwear that is made using Goodyear welted construction is that it can be resoled repeatedly, giving the shoe a longer lifespan.

Last

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The Naylor is based on the Claridge last on a G width. The Claridge last is a modern, soft chisel toe. I really love the more the streamlined, sharp shapes and the G width is perfect for us with slightly wider feet. The G width is equivalent to the E width in US sizing.

According to the Loake website: Another versatile last shape, Claridge is used for both classic English styles and more contemporary shoes. Claridge is a medium width last which should run true to size. There is a little extra (cosmetic only) length in the toe of this last, which has a slightly rounded point.

Sizing

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In term of sizing, I’m a size 10.5 E US on the Brannok device. Pediwear’s Loake Expert suggest to size down to 9.5 UK and its a perfect fit. It took about 1 week to break in the shoes. After that, the leather & footbed fully moulded to my feet. I’ve worn the shoes on a business trip to San Francisco. The 3 eyelet design was easy to slip on and off at the Airport and long walks to meetings was a breeze.

It’s a workhorse in my shoe rotation. The half rubber sole works great on slippery city streets. These shoes are very comfortable.

Conclusion

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The 1880 line is Loake’s top tier collection. It is built to last a lifetime and made with a premium leather upper, lining and insoles.  Overall, its an outstanding business casual shoe and can been worn all year around. Pediwear is offering a free shoe tree or free shipping world wide with a purchase of Loake Shoes of over 150.00 GBP,

Order your Loake shoes today at http://www.pediwear.co.uk
Email: sales@pediwear.co.uk
Phone: +44 (0)1422 367609

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James Chung

Founder & Editor in Chief of Hello Vancity magazine. Email james@hellovancity.com

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