Dearest readers, I have a confession to make. In addition to a trio of brand-new boots from (in some ways) brand-new brand Arno, in stock (for now) Clinch boots at Standard & Strange, and a new collaboration at Division Road, there are some terrible puns in this week’s roundup.
Now that you’ve been duly warned, I’m proud to present: The Shoes ‘n’ Boots of the Week.
Shoes ‘n’ boots from weeks gone by can be found here.
[Ed Note: while we never choose anything specifically because of them, some of these recommendations contain affiliate links—the price is the same for you, but Stitchdown gets a small commission if you make a purchase. It’s essential to keeping the site alive, so we really, really appreciate it.]
Division Road is one of the only retailers stateside that regularly stocks Crocket & Jones, and to our knowledge is the only one doing heavily customized collaborations at regular intervals—including the two C&J models releasing today. The first is this Chelsea boot on a Vibram Carramato sole in the patina-ready Natural Hurricane Hide. It’s a split welted Chelsea pattern on the sleek 378 last with a reliable bit of ruggedness added by the lug sole.
Meanwhile the Chepstow is another take on dressing up the offroad-ready Carramato: a high, three-eyelet chukka pattern on the 365 last with an Earth Green Suede upper and a 360˚ split reverse welt.
There are just a few sizes of Clinch’s seminal Jodhpur boot—with a Cat’s Paw heel—still in stock at Standard & Strange. This run is hand-welted on the CN-Wide last, which is designed to better accommodate western feet without sacrificing that “doctoral thesis in higher dimensional geometry” look that leaves Clinch releases allergic to long-term store shelve exposure. The leather sole is also dyed black to match the black calf upper before having a rubber topy glued on and reinforced with what I can only hope are clinch nails (I couldn’t help it).
Rivet & Hide, for the uninitiated, isn’t what you tell someone doing leatherwork behind enemy lines. It’s a menswear and denim boutique that’s grown from its online-only origins to operating two retail locations in under a decade. Enough background though, because it’s Thyme to talk about the boots, cap-toed Viberg 2030s in Thyme Janus Calf Suede. Maybe I’m just sick of the heat and humidity around here, but the crepe Lactae Havea sole and soft suede combo feels distinctly Autumn.
Given that Nicks’ TankerPro is a riff on the boots designed for and worn by actual people driving actual tanks for nearly 90 years, it seems only right that the pattern has made its way into Nicks’ Tactical series, which replaces the usual heavy lug sole with a light Vibram Sierra sole, and extend the usual 270˚ degree stitchdown all 360˚ around the boot. The insole and shank are still veg-tan, and the last is the (relatively) low arched HNW last. For the upper, leather choices include Weathershield Black, 1964 Black Smooth, or Coyote Brown Roughout.
Arno Shoes is an extremely exciting young brand from husband and wife team Mikhail Bliskavka and Christine O’Leary. The Stefano Bemer-trained duo, which has primarily concentrated on very limited custom work (which you can check out on their website) to date, just launched three ready-to-wear side-zip boots. The model, the Biskavka (“lightning” in Ukrainian) sports a sleek seamless pattern on gloriously blocky leather midsole and studded rubber outsole. The boots have a wide, 360˚ flat welt with a very dense and consistent line of stitching. They’re available in Buffalo Black Cherry…
…and Tobacco Kudu Roughout. Let’s just say we’re very excited to see what’s coming down the line.
The influence of the Red Wing Classic Moc on not just the Heritage Boot World (where it has occasionally been overshadowed by the Iron Ranger), but also 21st Century Style and the mainstreaming of workwear, would be a VERY long article in and of itself. Suffice to say that Oro isn’t the Classic Moc’s only legacy, so when Red Wing introduces a new Moc, it’s worthy of note.
The new style 8828, in Alpine Portage Leather from Red Wing’s own S.B. Foot tannery, is immediately notable for being the only moc in the current lineup to feature a black Traction Tred sole beneath the usual leather insole, steel shank, and 360˚ flat welt. If the product photos are to be trusted, it seems these will ship with a set of black leather laces in addition to the standard nylon.
Speaking of Mocs, Berlin Wisconsin’s own Russell Moccasin began accepting orders on their Backcountry Hiker in Weathered Oak Timberjack as part of their new Premier Build Models. Unlike some of their previous MTO or pre-order offerings, only one makeup option is available: double vamp, hand-sewn moccasin construction on a Vibram unit lug sole with 5-eyelet and three speedhooks, both in antique brass. Because of it, the lead time for Premier Build Boots is only eight weeks, with one exchange available if you mess up your sizing.
Russell has basically chopped their classic nylon-on-leather Safari PH down to create the lighter-weight Trail Boot, which is pieced together from Horween Rust Chamois, leather-lined navy cordura, and a Vibram Force 360 sole that can get some stuff done.
Oak Street took a breather from developing new things to dip boots in to release an unlined penny loafer in snuff Janus suede from C.F. Stead (among the world’s best) on a slim, comfy camp sole. The 800 last that they’re built around is part and parcel of classic American loafers of Ivy style fame, so they have a little width—and the unlined suede should offer stretch for those of you out there who like to size down and go sockless.
Baker’s has paired up with White’s to offer the C350 cutter in grain-heavy Bison. Part of White’s machine stitched line, the C350 lacks the hand-sewn rolled welt, but the innards are identical to the boots White’s has been producing for decades, and it gets a Vibram V-Bar sole and Quabaug heel. They’re available in brown bison…
…and Black Bison.