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Dear Readers,

I have finally received the rest of my prototypes, adjusted up to this point, and am feeling a whole lot better about the way that my line is taking shape. At this moment, the shoes are finally done with all of the pattern adjustments, which takes up the majority of the prototype work. Now, I just have to finalize the minute details like lining & sole colors, perfecting the medallion (placing on shoe and style), making sure that the shoes (patterns) are consistent with one another (when using the same pattern on two different lasts) and have them wear tested by a trusted expert who can give me constructive feedback on fit and comfort. I assume that I will need to take one more trip to my factory, sort out the rest of the work and have them re-made one more time for the final prototypes to become complete. I am thinking (best case scenario) that this will be sometime in May/June that I will receive them back. At that point, I can’t say whether or not my shoes will be ready for A/W 2012 release. I guess that it will depend on who takes them and how fast we can sort the business stuff out. Nevertheless, please know that I am doing everything that I can to make sure that the shoes come out quickly, but that the shoes are also going to look good and hold the integrity of the price that they will be selling at.

(Toe shape more accurate looking to picture on right)

When looking at the pictures, try to bear in mind that I took these very fast (just to show all of you) and right after they came out of the shipping box. So, if they look a little rough around the edges, that’s because they are, as I did not do anything to enhance their look, especially as they are all just prototypes that will not be apart of my true finalized samples. At this point, I have shown you just a little over half of the collection, and mostly all of the straight forward stuff. There are still about 6 styles that I am going to leave until the prototypes are completely finalized. I do this first and foremost, because I would like to leave a bit of excitement and anticipation in the air and partly because I do not wish to release all of my ideas to some of the people that read this blog (i.e. other shoe brands, designers etc.) before they are ready to be released to the world. Just so that you know, allow me to go over what I have showed you and what will be left for later.

What I have shown you: Cap toe oxford, saddle oxford brogue, penny loafer, chukka boot (in pointy last), plain toe quarter brogue with medallion (in black leather on pointy last and suede version on round last), Prince Albert wholecut loafer and derby with piping.

What I haven’t shown you: Balmoral boot, double monk strap, chukka boot (in round last with heavy sole), derby without piping, oxford saddle shoe, oxford wholecut with brogueing, and jodhpur boot.

What I am hoping from all of you, as I want to involve you in this whole process, is to start thinking about the models that I have showed you and to give me your thoughts on what colors you would love to see them in. When the prototypes are all finalized, I will put them up for a week or so, in order to let all of you give your top picks for color options. But, as a way to get that process going now, in order to speed things up, I would be more than happy to have you list them in the comments section below. Bare in mind that I will have to look at all of the comments and make a decision based on what is most feasible, sellable and popular.

For the derby shoe below, I am still very unsure about the piping that I originally thought would look good. I know that it is not for the common individual, but thought that it would pose as something fun for the shoe lover that wants something a bit different. Obviously, this derby will also come without the piping, but when making prototypes, I believe that you should make the craziest things first to know what they look like. It’s easy to imagine it without the piping but would be difficult to understand how it looks with it, without having seen it. So please, tell me what you all think. If I keep it in the collection, it will most likely be a one-off anyway.

I hope that all of you are enjoying watching the progress of my shoe line, as it unfolds and are also enjoying the product that I have created thus far. Do know that there is still more to come, some fun stuff too, the stuff that you would expect to see from me, after all this time of talking about colors, details etc… But I want to save it until later so you will just have to trust that it is there…

Thanks to everyone who has supported me and who eagerly awaits the release of my shoe line…


Justin, “The Shoe Snob”

25 thoughts on “Some More J. FitzPatrick Prototypes….!”

  1. I really like the loafer. The piping on the navy derby really sets it apart and would love to own it. As far as colours go I would love to see some forrest green suede and leather. But as I believe you need to make them appeal to as many costumers as posibile the safest choices are of course chocolate, black, cognac. Can you tell us about the price range?

    All the best

  2. Hey Justin

    Loving the new models.
    I’m in need of a heavy soled Chukka, so am looking forward to that, any chance it may be in a country leather?

    As for colours, I would love to see the brogue at the top of this page, in a beautiful Chestnut.

    Not 100% sure about the red piping, maybe if it was in a slightly different blue? Definately keep the blue!

  3. I’m up for the Albert loafer in pretty much any shade you care to name. I’d prefer it in not-black, since it’s fairly easy to find Alberts and similar loafers in black. In utopia, it would be available in not-brown, too – navy, grey, maroon, or even a deep green.

    I like the look of the red piping but would not myself wear a shoe with a standout bright detail, since it would pull the eye to my feet and I’m more of a harmonious-details type.

    In general, I’m interested in muted but less common colors, since it’s fairly easy to find appealing shoes in the usual range…and realistically, I have almost as many black, caramel and brown shoes as any one person really needs. It takes a lot for me to buy black brogues these days, but I’d mortgage the dog for a pair in a deep grey.

  4. The derby with red piping are unbelieveable. I love it and I am waiting exactly for this. You should definitly keep them in your collection.
    You can also try with a burgundy piping, it could make it.

  5. Hi Justin,

    GREAT designs you got there. Love the Chukka boots, colour is perfect for me. They should never be black.
    However, would always prefer a Dainite sole or similar!

    Keep up the good work,


  6. I don’t think the shoes are distinct; there are many like models out there, Justin, but your efforts are appreciated. The leather does not look to be of a good grade, although your price point is rather low so that is probably the best that could be used. Good luck.

  7. The red and blue look really good. Not a look I would expect to like, but I am impressed.
    I second having some forest green suede somewhere in the collection – perhaps the Prince Albert slipper?
    Overall I like the designs and look forward to seeing them become a reality. Best of luck!

  8. Very nice. Especially the loafer.

    What would be the price range and can we see a picture of the sole?

    Thank you.

  9. OK Justin!
    I love the loafers (in order of priority), but your deep brown suede would be definitely my second choice. I think six eyelets add some distinction. the clean design of the derby is outstanding, and the red (I’d use blue) make it outstanding.
    Great work.

  10. the idler of march

    Hi Justin,

    These are looking better than they were the last time you posted them up – has the last changed? It looks better – slimmer and with more defined lines. Although maybe that’s just the photographs. I think these are now looking very nice. If I can first make some observations unrelated to the colour:

    1. The full brogue at the top looks great – the last is stylish but the detail gives it a rugged look.

    2. The wholecut loafer is a great idea – have no idea why there are not more wholecut loafers around – hate the straps that most of them get lumped with.

    3. For the black and the suede one (same model I think) I like the broadening of the laces but I think they come too far down the shoe.

    4. For the two-tone derby, I think the piping is a great idea and I would definitely go for it myself. Obviously the colour selection is key and I’m not quite sure what would look best – maybe maple & oxblood?

    On the subject of the colours, one thing which I think is definitely lacking from the market at the moment is shoes with a kind of mottled/textured colour – lodger’s original shoes used to have this, I think they hand-painted them or something. Although lots of makers do a nice patina, I have yet to see anything as attractive as that. I’d also say don’t bother with any black shoes – C & J have those well covered and it’s much easier to add value to the trendy/traditional area of the market than it is to the traditional/traditional area.

    My view on colours, with the obvious disclaimer that this is just my personal opinion:

    The full brogue looks good in its existing colour, I think, but would also go well in burgundy or maybe cordovan-style tobacco colour.

    The boot would look good in a slightly lighter brown.

    The loafer is quite simple so I’d go for a bolder colour – light tan or again maybe tobacco.

    I think the one after the loafer probably goes best in medium brown, and for the suede version, I’d go for something lighter – chestnut kind of colour.

    For the two-tone maybe light tan and maroon, or light tan and dark brown? I personally think that if the colours are too contrasting then it can look cheap. How about getting the body of the shoe in blue suede and the piping in light tan? Is that mental?

    Finally it would definitely be helpful to know the rough pricing point in order to provide feedback – it really does matter as I’d be prepared to take more stylistic risks with a 300 pound shoe than a 600 pound shoe. I personally think that if you can make them septieme largeur-style prices without losing quality too much then that would be about right. The 400 pound pricing point is quite crowded and I would definitely go for G&G for anything above 500.

    Hope that helps and keep us updated!

  11. Hey Justin,
    Great Designs so far! Been following for a long time and must say that the evolution of your line is coming along nicely.

    The derby looks fantastic and I can see your dilemma with the piping. And given your original intent of the shoe, it seems to make since to keep as is.

    In terms of colors, would love to see loden green and instead of black for the quarter brogue, why not do it in grey. Especially after reading your last post,that would be an amazing shoe.

    Keep up the good work,


  12. I would prefer a slightly higher heel, perhaps 1/8th of an inch more. This would make all of the shoes presented more attractive. If this small change can be accommodated without significant adjustments to the last or pattern, it would be worth doing.

    I would also like to see the sole at the waist rolled. It looks as though it has been thinned. If the waist can not be rolled at the edge, I would leave more thickness.

    Perhaps some of the shoes could come with a higher heel and a HAF sole. This would be a real differentiator.

  13. My favorite is the saddle shoe. I like the brown, though the option to select two-tone colors would be highly cool. Alternatively, brown with a maroon middle bit.

  14. Valeriu – Price range will be around 300 for oxfords, loafers and around 340 for boots. I am glad that you liked the loafers, they are also among my favorites. Will see about that forest green suede, as I too would love to have a shoe in that color…

    Anon1 – It will come in that, but in a pebble grain with rubber sole.

    OwenB – Yes, I will offer the chukka in a chunkier rubber sole version, which will be in pebble grain leather. Glad that you are enjoying the models.

    Lark – Gray is indeed hard to come by….and hard to also get right. Thanks for all of your feedback. Abnormal colors will definitely be something that you will find in my range, but it might be something that I have to progress with slowly. There will be some navy and green shoes, also burgundy of course. But the grays and reds might have to come at a later stage.

    Romain – Glad that you like that Romain….I will save it for you!

    Vincent – Dainite like sole will be available….glad that your are enjoying the prototypes thus far. Thanks!

    Anon2 – Thanks for you input. I bet though, that when everything is said and done, you just might have a change of heart….

    BCBurroughs – Thanks for your comment!! Always glad to have support and know that the efforts are appreciated.

    Anon3 – I did not add a picture of the sole, mainly because I forgot to, but also because they did not come in the way that I wanted them, so they will be different. Price range will be around 300. Glad that you enjoy it thus far. Thanks!

    Ike – Thanks Ike!! Glad that you are enjoying them. I love those loafers too!! I want it in every color!

    The Idler of March – Wow, I appreciate all of the feedback and suggestions. I will have to take notes later (written) to remember everything. I will definitely be creating loads of colors, but do have to have those standard black shoes, for the non shoe maniacs out there… Price point is listed above a couple of times, but will be more Septieme Largeur style than G&G. Have to start in the medium range and then work my way up if I maintain my success.

    I did not change the last on any of the shoes that you have seen up to this point, just probably better picture angles. It’s funny how they can make or break your perception of something. I am definitely not a professional picture taker either…so that doesn’t help.

    Thanks again, I appreciate everything.

    Gentleman’s Gazette – They are actually still not done, just almost there….I can’t wait either!

    J – Thanks for all of the kind words. I will do my best to get some gray shoes in there, at first I thought may be the saddle brogue would be good in gray, but I think that maybe you have nailed it on the head suggesting the quarter brogue. Gray would be nice in that! Thanks for commenting!

    Anon4 – I am glad that you suggested the higher heel. Shamefully I knew something was wrong but couldn’t put my finger on it and that was it! Waist is pegged and yes, too thinned to have rolled. Some of the shoes will have a thicker, rolled waist, but I did them all like this at first to then see which ones I wanted to change back. It’s easier for me to imagine them with a non-thinned waist than it is with one. But they won’t all be like that when everything is done. Thanks for input!

    Anon5 – Glad that you like that!! Will definitely have a saddle with two toned options. That’s inevitable for me! Thanks for the comment.


  15. Justin,

    Needless to say all your designs are excellent and clearly show both your obvious talent and your passion for shoes.

    With regard to colours I would say black is ever only black but brown has such a wide spectrum of shades. With regular care and polishing even the better end (Tyrwhitt, Barker, T M Lewin etc)high street brands in black can look passable and possibly not too noticeably different (to an inexperienced eye) to the much more expensive brands. So you possibly may not compete so well in this colour.

    My favourite would be the saddle shoe in very subtle colour combinations. Those on the market today have very stark colour contrast which you younger men can carry off but us old guys would find too gaudy. Possibly something in a dark chocolate or conker brown vamp and quarters with burgundy saddle. From a distance to appear as just brown shoes but on closer inspection to have such an interesting feature. What do you think?

    Best regards,

  16. Pricing seems about right, kinda where I expected it to be.
    It’s funny how about a year ago, prior to discovering your blog, I could have never imagined spending more than 100euros for a pair of shoes and now I own 5 pairs of goodyear welted shoes and a desire for more.
    Another funny fact that I didn’t believe to be true is that ladies do really notice!:)


  17. Big fan of the whole cut loafer with toe detailing (actually fan of them all but like the loafers mucho). When is your range going to be on sale? Put me down for a pair in 11 (uk) please.

  18. Snapper – I thank you for your very kind words. It was quite a difficult process having to decide what to make and what not to, out of the 50 or so designs that I created. I do think that your suggestion is a great one, as I am finding that many individuals seem to want to see burgundy accents in my shoes, which makes me quite happy as I love burgundy! I will continue to do my best to not only provide lovely color options for the young and racy individuals, as well as the more reserved and dapper gentlemen. Thanks for commenting!

    Valeriu – It is very pleasing to read what you just wrote. Part of my goal in starting this blog, was to get men to truly care more about their shoes and hearing that you did just that, brings a nice smile to my face. And I am sure that you are much happier about it! Thanks for always haring Valeriu!

    James – Will do James. Can’t say for sure, but hoping to have them selling by the end of this year….but could very well be SS 2013. Only time will tell. Can’t rush though, as they need to be as good as possible before I do release them for sale.


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