Berwick 1707 are shoemakers you may never have heard of. Despite their name they are a Spanish company founded not in 1707 but rather more recently in the 21st century.
Despite not having heard of them they do make really very lovely shoes using high quality leathers and traditional Goodyear welting.
I think their shoes are exquisite. I was pleased to note that the Shoe Snob’s Justin FitzPatrick also shares that view.
What’s so great about them? First, is the immediate impression of quality. These are carefully crafted shoes making use of high quality materials. And it shows.
Second, is the shape of the last. Berwick’s shoes are for the most part traditional brogues, monks and cap toes. What sets their shoes apart is the shape. I prefer a narrow last which in my view makes shoes appear elegant. These shoes have elegance in spades.
Third is the traditional approach of the shoemakers. Berwick aren’t trying to blaze new trails. Rather they are trying to be faithful to long established shoemaking traditions, interpreting them for the 21st century.
In particular I am keen on the Danite soled brogues. They would make a great replacement for my Tesco rubber soled brogues, which are looking increasingly out of place in my improving shoe collection.
Berwick’s Danite soled shoes have slightly thicker than average soles, which means that you feel ever so slightly taller when wearing them. If you are feeling vertically challenged you may well enjoy feeling ¼ inch taller.
For reasons that are not clear to me Berwick 1707 do not operate an online shop. This is the 21st century people! Get with the programme please. Unfortunately, neither do they have a presence on the British high street.
A limited range of Berwick shoes are available from Debenhams, ironically via their online shop rather than in store. However, it is not clear whether the Debenhams range come from Berwick’s Premium or regular range.
Some of the Debenhams shoes appear to be very similar to the Berwick premium range but appear to lack the Jon Rendenbach branded soles that are evident on the Berwick site. Others appear identical to the Berwick regular range. Confusingly, they all retail on the Debenhams site for the same price, £150, apart from the boots which retail at £170.
It is, of course, possible that Berwick have made a range specifically for Debenhams to meet a specific price point and in order to do so it has been necessary to delete some elements from the Premium range. The JR soles would be one obvious candidate.
For those feeling brave or simply keen on a bargain it is possible to find a few examples of Berwick’s shoes on Amazon marketplace or eBay for less than this, though I am not recommending this as a course of action.
I confess that though I really like these Berwick 1707 shoes, I have never purchased shoes that cost north of £100 never mind £150. Indeed, most of my shoes have cost me closer to £50 because I usually buy during sales.
So I’ve been keeping my eyes open for a Debenhams sale for months now. My target is at least 30% off, which would bring the price down to £105. Still pricey but not quite as bad as £150.
The best I’ve seen is 28% off made up of 20% off followed by a 10% discount off the remaining 80% i.e. 8% bringing it down to £108. Unfortunately, Berwick is not included in the Debenhams Easter weekend sale. However, I have decided that my shoe collection certainly has space for a pair of Berwick 1707s.
If anyone has taken the plunge I would be keen to hear about it.
For more on Berwick have a look at the Shoe Snob’s review here.