Every once in a while I get an email asking why I am the best at elevator shoes, or who is the best between Don's Footwear and the Guiddo Maggio brand from Italy.
I have recently concluded that I get asked this question simply because customers tend to glance at the price difference between us both and think because GM is more expensive it means they are a better shoe. I know we all do not have the time to understand the finer aspects of shoemaking or to discover the skills and technique involved in creating a top tier shoe and with little time in our lives, we tend to just go on prices. Generally, it goes like this..If the price is too high we fear its just middlemen getting a cut, too low it seems there might be an issue later on after the purchase ( to good to be true)
Well I would say a higher price plays a part in what type of business that you are buying from:
- Own factory selling via retailer
- Own factory and sell in own channels DON'S FOOTWEAR
- From another’s factory and sell through retailers
- From someone else’s factory and sell in their own channels Guiddo Maggio
I believe Don's have the ultimate set-up. Because we own both our Brand and our channel. and that also helps Don's to offer a better price. In our factory we only created for our own brand, we dont need to create other labels to support our own factory our full attention and priority is on our own Brand. I know of only one other that created their own shoes and I believe it’s a Spanish brand, Guido Maggio outsources to another factory, that I know because I’ve had another factory contact me to ask if they wish to make shoes for us.
When it comes to premium custom made Owing your own factory is a must and gives a chance to create a better custom shoe, and have a better understanding over a marketer. We have been able to do that from the beginning. So, who is better? Well, Im slightly biased, but I would say we are better than Guiddo Maggio simply because Don's came along first, We started in 2005 and launched in 2009. The owner of Guiddo Maggio first came to me for advice around 2010 via a few phone calls on Skype, then slowly over time copied my styles, then managed to get my old webmaster to sell him my contact list. that's how he managed to get himself going, My family and friends still get his promotional emails from to this day, He always tends to copy things that I do a few months or years later, Trunk Shows, Styles, Website design, Content. I always laugh to myself when my good friend and loyal webmaster mentions to me what they have been up, Italians tend to say they are unique when it comes to design and they are always in competition with the French over who is the best at class and style and I believe they are the best in the world at that sort of thing, And so to have this guy trailing me ( a Scotsman), following my moves, its kind of cool haha.
The GM brand often like to criticize us that we are made in SEA in their blog posts and so I guess this is my long-awaited reply,, His only unique selling point is they are made in Italy, however, Its a huge problem in Italy that many shoes uppers are made in awful conditions across the water in the Slavic countries and shipped over and assembled in Italy ( there is a youtube video on the problem here) . Then next there is a problem with the Leather tannery Labour condition in Tuscany. So all in all, I don't think a Made in Italy statement beats a real Shoemaker like myself.
Don’s Footwear make everything in house. Except for the leather tanning which I buy from a Japanese owned tannery that has a high level of quality control as they supply to the entire Japanese police force and all leather must be tested regularly. I also make bespoke shoes, which is regarded as the creme de la creme of shoemaking And our bespoke offerings are made always in the west end bespoke way,, A wooden last needs to be created, shaped and labelled for the client use only, bespoke patterns are made, test pairs are made before going onto making the final pair. The prices range from 1000-6000 USD across the world.
Guido Maggio cant offer this service as they are simply a generic fashion brand. We make Fiddle back waist shoes, which only the best bespoke shoemakers can create.
This is our top line of shoes
Guiddo Maggio Shoes are Good year welted at best which is means the shoes are simply held against a machine to fix the sole on. Everyone one of our shoes in bench made from the best fiddle waist to the lightweight blake stitch. I’ve also been trained in London and Sweden. and I have helped a few other brands launch and given consulting on how to improve shoemaking. All in all, We lead the way and others follow when it comes to elevator shoes, This might feel like a rant, but it’s good to get the facts out there.