Production Update: Zero Drop Dress Shoe
This update has been a long time coming.
Having started a redesign of our zero-drop dress shoe back in March of 2017, the path to now has been long, slow and frustrating.
There have been times I have wanted to say “screw it” and be done with making shoes. The time needed, the expense required, the ridiculous emails (my favorite came with the subject” “WTF is your guys problem” with a body asking why “we couldn’t get our shit together and make some shoes.” Fair enough.) all made the question of “why” harder and harder to justify.
But I found myself unable to set the shoes down for long. I believed that if I could find a factory that could make exactly what I was looking for in terms of quality, construction and manufacturing minimums then I would give it one more shot.
And so that is what I have spent the last two years doing.
And I think this design made the decision worth it.
This updated DERBY is the best zero-drop dress shoe we have made. Handmade on the eastern coast of Italy, we started from scratch, re-assessing every detail.
Of course, we can go through all of the individual checkboxes:
“Double Hand-made” thanks to the Blake Construction (stitches sole to upper + providing enhanced flexibility)
Soft Italian leather
8mm leather sole
Lightweight (this leather soled version comes in 12.2 ounces per shoe versus the 12.7 ounces of the previous rubber soled versions)
…but the real magic comes when all of these individual components work together in unison.
When this combination of materials and design meet the soul and craftsmanship of a true shoe maker, something new is born. (Sounds familiar…)
Which is why I am excited to share with you the pre-order launch.
How the Pre-Order Process Works
I am placing an order with the factory for 100 pairs of shoes.
As a one-man operation, capping this run will allow me to fulfill these orders while putting in place a system to build on for the future.
I am accepting pre-orders for 10 days OR until all 100 pairs are RSVP-ed. First come, first served.
Pre-orders will come at a discounted price of $199. If you pre-order, you are guaranteed a pair in the size you requested.
Please understand, by pre-ordering you are opting to pay now to receive a discounted price. The shoes will arrive in 6-8 weeks. This is why pre-orders receive a 20% discount.
If there are any pairs not RSVP-ed out of the 100 ordered, I will make them available for $250 upon arrival.
I will do my best to be transparent about the availability without bombarding you with real-time updates on inventory. I will try to keep the updates minimal, sending emails when 1/2 are remaining and again when 1/4 are left.
That being said, I am making this offer exclusively to those who have signed up for the email list. I am not running any online ads on any platform for this pre-order. You guys have shared extreme patience, for which I am grateful. Which is why I want to make sure you have first shot at ordering.
Preorders will be available for a discounted price of $199 (20% off the retail price)
Every pre-orderer will be guaranteed a pair in the size you requested.
If you pre-order and the shoes do not fit, you can of course send back to me for an exchange (if I have your size available) OR for a full refund.
What goes into a $250 shoe?
For me to be personally willing to spend $250 on a pair of shoes would mean that the shoes need to be pretty special. So I am sensitive to the costs involved and trying to keep as affordable as possible.
But quality is not cheap.
For the sake of transparency, here are some of the costs that go into a $199 pre-order:
$6 - Development Cost
$101 - Manufacturing Cost (materials and labor)
$6.50 - Shipping Costs from Italy to USA
$5.97 - Credit Card processing fee
$5.50 - Shipping costs
And this does not include any of the additional administrative costs or expenses like traveling to Italy to meet with the factories.
This shoe is not for everyone. I am okay with that.
But for those of you that are looking for a zero-drop dress shoe that gets the job done day in and day out, you will be hard pressed to find anything more comfortable or as well-crafted.
In the meantime, feel free to email me with any questions: firstname.lastname@example.org
Again, thank you for your all of the support.