For a while there, it was pretty fun to dominate the podcasting scene so hard that the Shoecast rose to no. 43 on the Swedish fashion podcast charts (actually true story right there). Well, looks like that free ride is OVER!
Because Nicks Boots now has a podcast, and it’s quite legit and very worth a listen.
Other than pushing out truckload after truckload of overbuilt boots, Nicks in recent years has focused on giving folks a look behind the scenes at their factory—whether that’s been through their lively forums on Facebook or Reddit, or through their highly prolific YouTube channel (scratch that, TWO YouTube channels, now).
The new Nicks Boots podcast—named From Start To Finish, referencing how founder Nikolai Blahuczyn proudly described building his boots—offers something distinctly different from these other mediums. Instead of the back-and-forth of a comments section, or a series of unnarrated bootmaking video clips, you’re getting some in-depth insights from the people who help make Nicks Boots possible.
A couple of the episodes are focused on Shuyler Mowe, CEO and owner of Nicks Boots. Shuyler often interacts with Nicks customers directly, but this is the first time he’s really been front and center to talk about his experience at the helm.
Perhaps the most interesting episode so far is centered on Shuyler’s first one hundred days (give or take) running Nicks Boots after his father Steve Mowe stepped down—which just so happened to overlap with the unfolding Covid-19 pandemic. Shuyler and Nicks general manager Grant Pemberton reflected on those weird touch-and-go days and how the company navigated through them with grit and creativity. (Apparently, they even considered opening their own ranch at one point to raise cattle for leather to try and get around the supply crunch…briefly.)
While much of the content is focused on the inner workings at Nicks, the podcast also features voices from elsewhere in the industry. Shuyler had a quick chat with George Armstead of United Shoe Machine—one of the last shoemaking machine distributors left in the United States—about the challenges of sourcing and maintaining the old machinery that Nicks and other bootmakers rely on. He also spoke to Matt Bressler from Wickett & Craig (who we also had a chat with a few years back) about veg-tanned leather and some of the exclusive products they make for Nicks.
From Start To Finish has only a handful of episodes out so far, but it seems like it’ll be very worth following, whether you’re a fan of Nicks, or you’re just interested in getting one company’s perspective on the state of making boots in 2023. You can find the podcast on just about any of your favorite podcatchers; you can also watch some of them with accompanying video footage over at the Nicks USA YouTube channel.
(PS: the Stitchdown Shoecast will be back soon!)