Attention all: The Thunderdome is nigh! Only two days separate us from the beggining of the most grandest boot-and-shoe-wearing competition in the history of our species. If you’re shopping last minute, you’ll find Viberg’s second Autumn/Winter drop, a Division Road x Easymoc collaboration, and two innovative models from Yuketen in this weeks Shoes ‘n’ Boots of the Week!
Page through the rest of our release roundups 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.]
The Trek Boot, releasing today, is a collaboration between Division Road and Easymoc founder Greg Cordiero (listen to our Shoecast chat with Greg). Clicked from C.F. Stead’s Black Desert Oasis Oiled Suede, the handsewn moccasin construction upper is Blake stitched to Vibram’s chunky V100 lug sole. The four eyelet pattern is relatively high shafted for a chukka, and ends above the ankle.
The other model dropping today is a single-bottom, double vamp three eyelet moccasin in Black Chromexcel. Its design is classic Easymoc taken to chonky extremes. Except for a line of white contrast stitching, the shoe, down to the thick Vibram 2062 wedge, is completely blacked out. If camp mocs were a family, this is the black sheep, the disgruntled twin, the evil doppelgänger. You know, the cool one.
Viberg’s second AW23 drop is officially upon us. Whereas the Classic collection releases often communicate with lasts, soles, and hardware, the Refined and Terrain collections contain some of Viberg’s most complex patterns, tweaked by adding or subtracting details and applying leathers with formal or rugged connotations.
Take the Halkett in Nature Waxy Commander, a waxed suede which is treated to shrink and tighten the fiber structure, resulting a smooth but highly textured suede which marks visibly with wear. The distinctive leather is paired with an array of carefully prescribed details: French binding and blind eyelets contrasted by speedhooks, the crenulations of the 360˚ pinked welt, the cap toe simultaneously associated with both neat oxfords and heavy workboots. The pattern is higher shafted than the Viberg’s Service Boots and, it’s built on a Ridgeway sole.
The Bastion features an archival pattern originally created in the 60’s, which presents all the detail you’d expect of a cap toe oxford (a closed lacing system, blind eyelets, and of course a cap toe) with the rounded, military inspired silhouette that pervades many of Viberg’s lasts. Annonay French calf and 270-degree flat welt keep things sleek, and as is the case for every boot in the AW23 Refined collection, the sole is Ridgeway. Bastions have never not been polarizing for Viberg fans, but as Dress Chonk proponents we’ve always been quite intrigued by them.
Waxy Commander appears once again in the Terrain Collection (if you were wondering, it’s present on 46.6% of the boots in this release). This time, it’s appearing on a padded collar Pachena Bay, Viberg’s traditional Italian hiker pattern designed for the 240 last. Like historical examples of the style, the construction is stitchdown with a lugged, commando sole. An insulated lining means these are viable in cold weather environments.
There’s a shorter, unpadded an unlined hiker available as well in a trio of leathers including more Nature Waxy Commander and the Antique Phoenix pictured here. The same stitchdown construction and commando sole are present, as is an added pull loop.
If you’re looking for a hiking boot that you probably will never wear hiking, this truly is your week. FEIT has begun to accept pre-orders on their new Utility hiker, which showcases FEITs continuous experimentation with construction. In addition to an ultra-light lugged Vibram sole, the Utility Hiker also uses a 360˚ split-reverse welt, a black horsehide upper that FEIT calls “semi-cordovan”, and a padded collar made of rough-out suede with natural latex padding in place of the typical foam.
Part of the beauty of Alden’s retailer-focused orientation is that it results in an incredible variety of collaborations and one-off models, but there’s certainly something to be said for a simple pattern, damned well executed. This week Leffot has brought us exactly that in the form of a plain toed military derby executed in impossibly shiny Color 8 shell. The “military” in military derby comes from the last; Alden’s 379x, inspired by…military derbies. The model is flat welted on a single leather sole and rubber heel.
Truman is re-running one of their most interesting leathers, with pre-orders open now. C.F. Stead’s Rough Mohawk is just about as nappy as roughouts get, with an extremely textured, almost fluffy looking vibe. If Chewbacca was a boot, his upper would be Rough Mohawk. The 8-inch , 79 lasted pattern is pretty close to the platonic form of a boot, and a Truman commando sole and 270-degree flat welt keep the rest of the boot simple but well executed, highlighting the leather further.
If you’re looking for something to wear around the house this fall, Oak Street Bootmakers released a limited edition version of their penny moc on a camp sole. The hand-stitched moccasin is available in an appropriately cozy unlined nuff suede. It should be mentioned that these are perfectly suitable for outdoor use as well.