Someone famously said, " Shoes speak louder than words."
I am a firm believer in that.
I have no interest in first class travel, fancy cars or golf sets. But yes, I do like to put some money aside for a fine pair of shoes. Here's my pick of the well-heeled ones.
Koji Suzuki: When he was just 22, Suzuki left for Florence to study the art of shoe making at the Sarteco School. Subsequently, he became an apprentice of Roberto Ugolini. A few years later, he set up his own factory in Kobe. That is where he cobbles together the finest possible shoes. Particularly distinguished is his Spigola shoe. You can find his shoes at The Armoury in Hong Kong.
Corthay: It was well over a decade ago. I was walking down the streets of Paris when I suddenly saw the most delightful shoes in a crummy show window. It took me a while to figure out that the entrance was from the back lane. When I walked in, I saw a craftsman sitting besides a clutch of delightful shoes. Corthay's speciality is its jaw-dropping colours. But since I am aging, I stick to their Oxfords: specifically a shoe called Fantomas. Closer home, Corthay is available at Malmaison By The Hour Glass in Singapore.
Gaziano Girling: My friend Kevin Seah is a devoted dandy. His store in Singapore is a shrine to style. That is where I discovered Gaziano Girling. The lads are British. They have 20-member team that crafts shoes in their factory in Kettering. The uppers are made from Swiss and French calf leather. I particularly fancy their Sinatra shoes.
Cesare Paciotti: The one Italian brand that really does it for me is Cesare Paciotti. There is a certain edge to his designs and truckloads of innovations as well. In particular, his Nappa leather flat loafers are unfairly and insanely great.
Berluti: These gents have been dressing up dudes since 1895. Their shoes are seriously glorious. Their patinas are poetry. The craftsmanship pregnant with character. And with Alessandro Sartori as their artistic director, this brand is certain to walk many miles ahead. I am particularly fascinated by their Gaspard shoes. It is breathtakingly beautiful.
So, there you go. That's a lot of shoes to step into. Enjoy them.