It Was Only A Matter Of Time… Affordable Custom Shoes

It Was Only A Matter Of Time… Affordable Custom Shoes


With the fast growing made to measure suit and shirts industries I knew it was only a matter of time before shoes caught up.  Presumably socks, belts and ties will be next; but I can only hope for now.  For today, let’s talk on shoes.  It is oft said that you can tell how a man dresses by looking at his shoes.  Women no doubt judge a man by his shoes (partly because of their own shoe fetishes).  Brands like Cole Haan and Mark McNairy (and hopefully Justin Fitzpatrick of The Shoe Snob will soon be on the list) have been pushing the envelope on the ready to wear side of things while there are countless artisans like Pierre Corthay, George Cleverly, Gaziano & Girling who are killing it on the made to measure and bespoke side of things.

When I speak of these made to measure ventures I mean the ones that are affordable for men like myself; recently out of college (or perhaps even not), some disposable income and a desire to dress well.  But it is the amount of disposable income and desire to dress well that really classifies us.  For we cannot go and spend thousands of dollars on a suit or shoes; as much as we would like to. What this new wave of companies has done is changed that ‘thousands of dollars’ into the much more attainable range of ‘hundreds of dollars.’  I have discussed in depth a few of the suit companies that are doing this (Indochino, MyTailor, Black Lapel, Mr. Neds, My.Suit).  I will soon begin delving into shirts and shoes.

The first shoe brand I will discuss will be Scarosso, a shoe company based in Germany with its production in Italy.  They have a ready to wear line but my focus will be on their customizable shoes which cost around 250euro.  I also hope to also discuss Animas Code (and here) a company out of Spain (where my favorite shoe company Carmina is from) who also does ready to wear and has a similar customizable platform (including one womens shoe) with shoes costing around 280euro.  However, they focus on casual, not dress shoes.  To say I am excited about both of these companies is an understatement.

If you know of any other companies who are doing something similar to what these two are doing and would like them reviewed and/or discussed please let me know, I’m always open to ideas.  Or, if you have any experience with either please feel free to sound off in the comments.  Additionally, Carmina recently launched its e-commerce site, take a look.  And to say I am excited about that is also quite an understatement.


  1. I have been recieving emails from a company called itailor for made to measure shoes. Can you give me the 411 on this company. I ordered shirts from them but I’m not impressed with thier fit and finish of the garment for this company. There products seem dull and un-impressive in the fabrics Selection. I also ordered jeans from them and twice they have come back as skinny jeans with very slim cut thighs and low rise. When I asked to remake them and providing them with pictures. They told me they can not make changes to the pattern other then waste and length. Therefore, most of there garment don’t work for a full figure male like myslef. Please advise on the QA.

    • James,
      iTailor has actually reached out to me to review their shirts. I have not ordered my shirt yet though. I would agree with much of what you say here on the process. They don’t really do much in terms of fit options. I recommend you check out Luxire or Cottonwork; I’ve had quite favorable experiences with both of them.

  2. as far as shoes are concerned, over the last 5 years I had 3 pairs made by ADLER shoes and the quality and fit are perfect, especially since I wear a size UK 16. The prices are also the lowest I have found for bespoke shoes. They send their customers a pair of casting socks which is well explained on their site and is very easy to use –

  3. I ordered a pair of so called custom made boots from Adler, first I couldn’t get my foot in the shaft so they made a new pair, to cut a long story short the boots went back to Germany four more times until I came to the conclusion Adler didn’t know how to make boots. I still have these £350 boots and can’t wear them as the right foot boot is still not a proper fit. Be careful and don’t waste you’re money.

  4. I bought 2 pairs of boots from Adler – one pair were fine, the other ABSOLUTELY awful – supplied with multiple scratches in the uneven leather. I complained and Herr Adler said the scratches would come out with polishing… bullshit. After wearing them once a lace eyelet came out, I took the laces out and could see that they had used eyelets of insufficient depth and I HAVE HAD THEM ALL REPLACED. Please avoid Adler shoes, the quality is too variable and they don’t care.