There is a new bespoke maker in town, who is revolutionizing what it means to get ‘bespoke’ or better yet ‘semi-bespoke’ in a day and age where international travel might be difficult if at all permitted.
That maker is Wayman Bespoke and they are coming out of Germany. Like many stories of success, theirs started with a need that was hard to fulfill so they decided to fulfill it. Or should I say, he, Simon Wegmann, the owner. Having quite narrow feet, which is a difficult issue to remedy in terms of well-fitting shoes, Simon found himself forever at a loss with something he felt worked well with his feet. So he decided to do something about it and create a service where all people, from no matter what location of the planet they were in, could easily get well-fitting shoes with a self-service nature and a few clicks on a screen. And so was born his Semi-Bespoke Service.
Not to be confused with traditional bespoke, this semi-bespoke service features a self-measurement system whereby the customer actually takes in-depth measurements of their own feet with the assistance of a professional if need be, all via email and/or whatsapp video etc. Quite clever as it goes. After the measurements are taken and customer confidence is achieved in sizing, you can then easily select your shoes and all of the details added and patiently wait 12 weeks as your shoes and personal last are made.
The shoes are in-tune with this new ‘handmade’ of being hand-clicked, hand-lasted, hand-welted, and machine-stitched sole (180 degrees with waist stitched by hand). And all of that starting at $750 which is an impressive price to say the least. And of course, to get this price the shoes are made in Shanghai and QC’d in Germany, where the company is based.
It feels as if this is the new future of bespoke, as sad as that sounds for traditional makers. As we become forevermore automated, streamlined, and lose touch with that personal connection, Wayman Bespoke, is paving the way for the ‘new normal’ of shoemaking, or so it seems. Time shall tell. I will always be in favor of traditional bespoke as art that we should never lose, but can also appreciate the progress of industry to keep up with the times and culture of the world.
Nonetheless, my hat is tipped to the owner Simon. He had a problem, found a solution and taught himself shoe designing. Reminds me of someone I know 🙂 And his shoe design is quite cool, to say the least. The blue austerity brogue wingtips with grey suede details are sublime!
I don’t see this sort of service eliminating traditional bespoke… That’s as much about the “intangibles” – the service, prestige, etc – as it is about the product. Rather, I see this opening up a near-bespoke service to a lot of people who couldn’t afford it otherwise, which can only be a good thing. Unless you’re a traditional brand selling at that price point… Crockett & Jones should be more worried than John Lobb.
Fair enough, time will tell. Of course there will always be the customer who can afford bespoke without blinking and will do so but also the customer that might aspire to go full bespoke might stop at this and never actually get to the full bespoke…so it really depends to be honest, as well as where our world leads us
Quite interested in this is services. I’m in Australia where is hard to access many of the shoemakers standard offerings let alone bespoke. Only not sure about the quality of the leather and workmanship.
One can only know by ordering or other peer reviews