Customer insight- David Driegert, Virginia

IMG_8362Following on from our customer review from Jerry in Melbourne, we have been sent the following post by one of our ever loyal US customers, David Driegert Jr from Fairfax, Virginia.

We love nothing more than hearing what our customers think about their shoes and if you would like to write a review then please do get in touch by emailing chris@herringshoes.co.uk

Enjoy.

Herring Windermere Review

Here in Northern Virginia we get a wide variance in our Winter weather, from cold and snowy to mild and dry.  When that wet Winter weather starts to set in a pair of leather soled dress shoes just won’t do. I needed a shoe that could go with my business casual dress and stand up to any wet weather coming my way. I worked closely with Chris Clark at Herring to find the right shoe for my needs. With his expert advice we chose the Herring Windermere boots.

The boots arrived quickly and are a beautiful rich burgundy color with very soft supple leather and a nice grain detail. I ordered my normal size and they fit wonderfully with just a bit more width so I can wear a nice lightweight boot sock for the colder days. There isn’t enough room to wear a heavyweight boot sock, but anything lightweight or medium weight will work wonderfully with this boot.

I’ve worn the boot only a week now and the break in is very easy. They have become increasingly more comfortable each time I wear them. I honestly expected a much harder break in period especially with the full commando soles, but these boots are proving me wrong.

One area of note, these boots do not have the quick lace notches for the top lacing. I’ve kept the top two lace holes empty and feel that gives me a bit more flexibility in my ankle area. This is especially helpful when driving my manual car and does not detract from the overall look and style of the boot.

If you’re looking for a boot that can easily work with business casual dress to jeans and flannel, has soft beautiful supple leather, a rich color and comfortable style that can handle Winter weather, look no further than the Herring Windermere.

Sincerely,

David G Driegert Jr
Fairfax, Virginia

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Great shoes need great socks

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Last month I wanted you to understand that your feet deserve better, so my tips were about how to treat them the best way you can.

This time I want to “bring back to their former glory” something too often neglected:

your socks!

Obvious, isn’t it? But somehow 80% of you guys don’t wear good ones. You often buy cheap, too big, too small or poor quality socks that won’t last. Isn’t that a bit crazy?

Your socks should cocoon your feet. So again think about quality. Think about good material and fabrics. They will last longer, you will feel more comfortable and you will look so much better as well.

Choose different ones for Summer and Winter. You won’t sweat too much when it’s hot and you can make a fuss of your feet by wearing a mix of wool and cashmere when it’s cold.

You know that amazing feeling when you sleep under your favourite duvet? That feeling of well being? Well, trust me, good socks are the exact same thing for your feet.

You must also change your socks everyday, or even 2 times a day after a crazy morning running after your dog/wife/client/car/customer/bus… and it’s raining hard!

You need to show some common sense, because if you want the best shoes, they deserve the right socks.

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Customer insight- Jerry Tharapos, Melbourne

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This article has been submitted by one of our loyal customers, Jerry Tharapos.  He is from Melbourne, Australia and has become such a regular customer that we thought it would be great to hear directly from him. Jerry has kindly written the following article. If you are a Herring customer and would like to feature then please get in touch as we would love to share more of your insights.

In recent times, there has been a lot written about style cues coming from the 20s and 30s.  Probably because of a lot of period dramas.  I have always loved that era, the colour, textures and patterns of the cloths.  Things were so well made then, and bold and flamboyant.

About 30 years ago, I saw my boss wearing a double breasted Prince of Wales check suit and I thought it was the best thing I’d ever seen.

I’ve bought many shoes from Herring.  I have the standard must have’s but always get enticed by the spectator brogues and the colours that are a little bit left of centre.  For instance, recently I bought a pair of olive wing-tip brogues and a pair of purple suede brogues.  I’ve been buying shoes from Herring for about 5 years now.  The customer service is always excellent and the range of shoes is quite diverse.  I also do OK from the sales, twice a year.  I started off buying from the classic range, now I appreciate the offering from the premium range and I have bought a number of pairs from the 1966 range.  I have 3 sons and they enjoy Dad buying them Christmas and birthday presents from Herring.  I mentioned that the customer service is excellent, and it is, but the point of difference is that there is a genuine desire to delight the customer and I am proud to say that the guys at Herring have now become my friends.

FullSizeRenderBut shoes are only part of the story. I have also built up a good range of jackets and suits. Plaids, window pane and Prince of Wales check are de-rigueur in many different colours.  I have a tailor in Melbourne that has similar tastes, so I am one of his best customers. And, I love hats. I have a small head so it is difficult to find something that fits me well.  I also enjoy having a variety of styles and colours.  So, the only option is to get them made by a milliner in Melbourne.  She has made hats for Mick Fleetwood and his band and, apparently, one of his band members coveted a brown porkpie that she made for me.  I told her she should have sold it for a bomb and made a significant profit!

When choosing my outfits I think there are three basic and essential ingredients that make a point of difference and style to a gentleman’s wardrobe. Let me explain in more detail.

Firstly, and most importantly, I think it has to be the shoes.  Apparently women judge a man’s shoes twice as much as men judge a woman’s.  So, they are the first thing you need to get right. My preference is for oxford semi-brogues and three colours are essential; chestnut, mahogany and burgundy.  But of course you also need the classic; black “oxfords, not brogues”.  The oxford is an elegant style for a dress shoe and a semi- or quarter-brogue creates enough interest without being over the top.  Once you have the staples, you will begin to become more confident and then you can mix it up with different styles, colours, leathers and suedes.  The Herring Fencote is an excellent example of this. No wonder it is a best seller.  I often get asked about the number of shoes I have and the truth to that question is, “I do not know”, but I always get positive comments about them so does it matter?

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Secondly I think about the body; the waistcoat. A waistcoat will always make a two-piece suit pop, even in a plain charcoal or navy. You can make a significant statement with the colour and cloth of a waistcoat.  A subtle burgundy plaid waistcoat under a navy suit looks very classy.  You can wear the same waistcoat with a suit, chinos or jeans and get a three wholly different looks.  Three or four different waistcoats that compliment your existing wardrobe, have the affect of significantly increasing the number of options and outfits.  Also, some nice suspenders (braces) under the waistcoat will also give a unique twist.  Other men may not notice the suspenders (braces) but, like it is with good shoes, the ladies will notice the flash of colour under your waistcoat, and will be impressed.

Let’s top it off with the third ingredient – a hat. A Fedora is without question the one thing that will make your style complete. Again, the number three features here.  Three essential colours need to be in your wardrobe; and they are brown, grey and navy blue.  It is an unfortunate thing that men have stopped wearing hats but, thankfully, I believe that there is a resurgence of the Fedora.  Once you have the staple colours, you can add more and become more adventurous.  Would you wear a purple porkpie?  Not sure about you, but my answer is, yes!  And if you are even more daring you can get your hats custom made for a bespoke look.  I often get asked, “how many hats do you have?”.  Probably the best answer comes from Helen Mirren, playing Hedda Hopper in the recent movie, Trumbo, when asked, “New hat?” Her reply “… daily darling, daily.”

In the end, whilst other people’s views and advice can trigger some positive changes in what your wear, the real secret is to be comfortable with your own choices – “Know, first, who you are and then adorn yourself accordingly” – Epictetus.

Regards,

Jerry Tharapos

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3 great ways to keep your feet sweet

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Summer – What did it mean for all of us?
Basically our feet were free, in “the open air”…
We all need a break. We all need to breathe. This can be very liberating. It’s good sometimes to fully enjoy a non-active lifestyle and be lazy. And it starts by forgetting everything you read and hear about elegance and rules for a while. Even my articles. Especially my articles!
But the holidays are now over with. Time to get back to reality.
So first, let’s talk about your feet. It’s sad that most men do not take care of their feet at all.
I want to help you change this with 3 great tips.
Firstly you need some sodium bicarbonate – immerse your feet in tepid water (1L) to which you added a small cup of bicarb. Sit and relax for 15 minutes. This is good for everything even the bad smells!
Secondly think about Lavender oil – you just need 2 drops and add it to olive oil. Rub your feet with this perfect blend which I think is ideal against infections and makes your skin feel great. Make sure you always dry your feet perfectly.
Thirdly you must cut your nails. Podiatrist usually say that a pair of small nail pliers is always better than nail clippers. You could save yourself being in pain because of ingrowing nails if you take the time to care for your feet.
These are my favourite tips but you can find many more. My main point is that you must think more often about your feet. You spend half of your day on them so you should treat them like they deserve.
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Herring at Pitti

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Herring at Pitti and the power of classic and elegant accessories.

A Gentleman should always think about having at least one nice bag. This is not only a “woman’s affair”.

Something useful, practical, functional but also aesthetically pleasing. A simple and understated briefcase for example.
Forget about these backpacks/rucksacks we see too often in town with all these guys looking like turtles or snails. You need to think about bags the way women do.

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Gui Bo and Jared Acquaro

They try to match them with their shoes, with their coats… Basically it’s an important and integral part of their whole outfit.
It’s even easier for us men. I would never dare to wear a flashy red or pink weekend bag for example, I would stay classic. Try to follow the basic rules I have already talked about when you wear your shoes for accessories. No black belt with brown shoes, so no black bag with brown shoes etc.

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Herring Aldgate bag

When I’m at Pitti, I have to run everywhere and I have a lot of meetings. So my bags are vital. I cannot even imagine how to carry everything I put inside my briefcase if I had no bag. I need my briefcase!

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Herring Aldgate

My iPad, my papers, a bottle of water and my Coke and so many other things I need.
Moreover everything is protected and everything is in its proper place.

Simple, elegant, ergonomic.
What more could you want?

( Photographers : Marie paola_bh, Streetstylevgenio,  Des gens en photo.
Photos featured in : Esquirre, Vogue, Dandy magazine, W Magazine)

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Lead a more colourful life

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I’ve always been very surprised that men can wear sneakers with lots of colours but only black or brown shoes.

They think that dressing up means that they have to be sober/simple. And they are right,  we shouldn’t wear a nice suit and ruin the look with bad shoes. Especially in a business environment where understatement (meaning simple clothes and the barest of accessories) is vital. It means that shoes and socks must be as discreet as possible. Even the most audacious Gentlemen only dare a little patina. A light dark/navy blue luminous shine on their black Oxfords or Monks for example.

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But we also know that nowadays most men do not wear suits. But they still wear “boring” shoes and most of the time hideous socks. For a long time, there just wasn’t a good choice of different colours and far fewer designs.

It’s different now. It is possible.

What about matching a nice denim with blue loafers? What about tweed boots with a classic corduroy? What about wearing green derby with a smart green blazer? What about a strong orange or tobacco suede for your saddle shoe or chukka boot?

SHACKLETON AND ALDGATE

Don’t get me wrong, we mustn’t look like clowns., but we should be more playful with colour on our feet and ankles. After all we do it with our polos, with our sneakers, with our watches and our cars, so we should do the same with our shoes.

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It’s Summer, think about it.

Sartorially yours,

Guillaume Bo ( MenNeedMoreStyle )

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Spring into style

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Winter is over!
With the sudden arrival of spring,  the temperature is rising – sometimes. It should rain less -sometimes. So, this is a very complicated season for which to dress appropriately. Because it’s spring, your wardrobe is pulling itself in all directions: a blazer for your cold shoulders, Bermuda shorts for your Vitamin D deficient legs, scarves for the chilly morning and evenings or light fabrics because we all need and want to say to ourselves: “It’s Summer soon!” So what you need are good shoes to help you to feel good; to be your best.
BARCELONA NAVY

Herring Barcelona in Navy suede

 Gentlemen, think about loafers for example. Tassel loafers, penny loafers, Belgian loafers…
they are multipurpose and one of man’s best friends. With or without socks if it’s not too cold, with chinos or a blazer, in brown or black if you feel like wearing them like Italians do with their blue suits. You can wear them almost any time, except on a very formal dressy occasion. You will feel light and that is what Spring is all about.
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Herring James in Espresso calf

Think about buckled monk shoes too.
If it’s too hot and and your workday is too long so your feet swell, you can unfasten the buckle to let your feet relax. Just remember that single monk strap shoes are more dressy than double monks.
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Herring Jasper in Chestnut calf and sandal suede

And now, please, go outside. It’s Spring!

Sartorially yours,

Guillaume Bo ( MenNeedMoreStyle )

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Women and mens’ shoes by Guillaume Bo of MNMS

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You all know that women love shoes – and bags!
Did you also know that more than 50% of them look at your shoes, gentlemen, when they meet you for the very first time?
It must mean something!
First, a lot of girls and women would love to be able to wear your shoes. Yes, they would love to find more double monks, tweed loafers or suede two-tones. They ask me so many times where I get my shoes! They say “I wish they made those in small sizes, I can’t find shoes like that for me!”.
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Secondly, women often buy clothes and shoes for their men. More than 60% of men are dressed by their girlfriends, wives, partners. So it means you, you…and not me.

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Shoes speak louder than words, especially for women, because they understand what a lot of men don’t.  That by choosing the right style for you, in the right colour and by protecting them and taking care of them you show and prove that you are a true gentleman. Your shoes reveal a lot about your inner-self to a lady without realising.
So, please, think about your shoes too!
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Sartorially yours,

Guillaume Bo ( MenNeedMoreStyle )

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How casual is ‘casual’ ? by Guillaume Bo of MNMS

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Nowadays casual means everything and…nothing. Originally, gentlemen had to wear suits in town. Casual meant country. Casual meant colours. Casual meant more “room for manoeuvre”

Thanks to our first article dedicated to dress or formal shoes, you know what you should wear with your suits. But nowadays far fewer people wear suits regularly and so things have changed a lot. The “old rules” are no longer available for a lot of men. “No brown in town” for example is completely out of date. These days you have choice and sometimes that is not easy!

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Herring Shackleton

This is why also we must tell the difference between casual and…casual.

Do you still wear a jacket or a blazer? Do you walk a lot? Do you drive a lot? Do you want to have a nice pair for the week end only? Or do you only wear denim?

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Herring Exford and Gidleigh bag

Basically, you should consider that if you do wear classic attire, like a blazer with nice trousers, or even nice blue denim trousers with a jacket, you are more “formal” than casual. In this case feel free to wear nice Oxfords for example, but not black ones. In fact you can almost wear whatever you want as long as it is not black. (This applies to your clothes too – no black!). Think about blue or brown loafers, tan double monks, nice derbies. Be bold and try and coordinate with what you are wearing.

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Herring Fiennes

It is the same thing for your socks. Casual means fewer constraints and less rigidity.

Casual also means “practical”. Rubber soles can be very helpful for those who walk a lot or those who need to worry about the rain and the slippery sidewalks for example.

If you are lucky enough not to have a dress code at work, feel free to wear whatever you want. Same thing for your days off and weekends.

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Herring Shackleton

But never forget that a nice pair of shoes makes always the difference. Play with textures, fabrics and colours but don’t go to far.

Just forget about black ones, horrible flip-flops or Crocs of course. A contemporary gentleman is still a gentleman and he knows that balance and moderation are the key.

Sartorially yours,

Guillaume Bo ( MenNeedMoreStyle )

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Shoe style guide by Nicola Radano

 

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Ciao a tutti, oggi sono qui per darvi alcuni consigli e aiuti, su come scegliere il modello di scarpa adeguato in base alle diverse occasioni. Vediamo di seguito,alcuni modelli dai pià classici ai pià casual.

Hello everyone, today I am here to give you some advice and help on how to choose the most appropriate model of shoes according to different occasions. Please see below for my selections.

OXFORD:

Nata nel 1830, è la scarpa per eccellenza delle occasioni di gala sia diurne che notturne. Presenta un allacciatura a 6 occhielli, chiusa. Consigliata con un abito dai toni scuri e pantalone con risvolto ampio (5cm).

First popular in the 1830’s, this shoe is ideal for formal occasions, day or night. The closed lacing makes this style sleek in profile and so the most elegant design of shoe. In black leather it can be worn with a dark suit or brown leathers. For extra flair they work really well with cuffed (turn-up) trousers but you would not do this with a black pair.

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BROGUE:

la forma ¨ simile alla Oxford, ma dalla punta meno arrotondata, ¨ caratterizzata da forature dette a œnido di rondine” che rendono questa scarpa classica, ma allo stesso tempo pi casual. Si pu indossare con un abito, preferibilmente spezzato (giacca e pantalone diversi).

The brogue is a style that uses punching details in the leather to create a pattern. This makes it more casual than an Oxford. You can complement the shoe by wearing a broken outfit i.e. non-matching trousers and jacket.

Herring-Herring Gladstone II-Chestnut Calf-10859-5593-1

MONK STRAP:

Una scarpa chiusa, con la tomaia che risale verso il collo del piede, sulla quale si sovrappone unâ ala allacciata lateralmente da una (single monk strap) o due fibbie (double monk strap, o dub-monks) a seconda del modello. Meno formale della Oxford, ma allo stesso tempo elegante. Indossabile con un abito dalle tonalità scure.

The monk can have either one or two straps depending on the style. The shoe is generally elasticated to allow the shoe to slip-on without needing to alter the tackles, although if you have a high instep you will need to undo the buckles. This is less formal than an Oxford but a little more elegant than a brogue. This is best worn with darker tones.

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LOAFER:

La scarpa pià usata dalglâ italiani, considerata un must per lâ uomo a cui piace essere elegante, ma non eccessivamente. La possiamo trovare con una punta sfilata o quadrata, in camoscio o di pelle. Indossabile con un abito spezzato o con un jeans e camicia.

This is an essential shoe for the Italian people, considered a must for men who like to be stylish but not extravagant. It can have a pointed or square toe and be made of suede or leather. It is best worn with an unmatched jacket and trousers or with jeans and a shirt.

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TASSEL LOAFER:

Anchâ essa utilizzatissima dal dandy italiano, che si sente molto giovane. presenta la stessa forma della loafer ma sul collo piede presenta delle noppine in pelle intrecciata.

Adatta per look classic con tocchi sportivi (la mia preferita).

Another favourite in Italy is the tassel loafer, worn by a younger and more extravagant man, it has the same shape as a standard loafer but the tassel and lace around the heel add more flamboyance. This is my favourite design as it is great with classic styling or more sporty outfits.

CHUKKA BOOT:

Uno stivaletto con le stringhe, un must per qualsiasi uomo, comodo e chic allo stesso tempo. Utilizzabile su un abito non eccessivamente formale e su jeans.

The Chukka boot, a must for any man, is comfortable and chic at the same time. This is definitely a relaxed style that is best worn with jeans and informal attire.

 

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DERBY:

Una scarpa molto casual simile alla chukkaboot, leggermente pià bassa e con la pianta molto larga e con suola in gomma o in para. Utilizzabile per qualsiasi situazione, non estremamente formale.

Derby designs are great for wearing if you have a high instep, but because of the construction of the lacing being open they are not as elegant and so less formal. They are often in wider fittings and can be seen in country designs with plain fronts. Suitable for most situations but not for formal wear.

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CHELSEA BOOT:

Lo stivaletto per eccellenza, adatto per chi ama gli abbinamenti classici con tocchi casual. Presenta la molla ai lati e possiamo trovarlo anche nella versione Brogue.

With elasticated sides the Chelsea is a superb boot for most occasions. It is sleek and formal looking in black or casual and relaxed in brown making it extremely flexible for your wardrobe.

 

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Spero possiate apprezzare questi miei consigli, per qualsiasi domanda, non esitate a scrivermi.

I hope you can appreciate my advice, for any questions please do contact me here or via my blog at nicolaradano.com

Ciao a tutti, Nicola.

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