At what point is it okay to send an old pair of shoes to the grave? Three years, five years, ten, maybe? Sitting in the coffee shop at gym, I can’t help noticing these fantastically buggered up impressions of my feet – which I think already had ten candles on their last birthday cake. The elastic is perished and the soles are worn to the quick. I’m never sentimental about clothes and things, but chucking these will be like, like losing a foot. I’m going to have to talk to my friend Sue Engels the shoemaker, who goes around the world making beautiful shoes and boots for people who take walking seriously. Sue has made shoes in the UK, in SA and New Zealand and now she tells me she’s on her way back to New Zealand in January. I’d better talk quickly.

'My Favourite Shoe' - Earthcote Worn Leather

Poking around Sue Engels’s workshop the other day, it occurred to me that if you’re a customer of hers, somewhere hanging on her studio wall you’ll find a last with your name on it. And if you don’t have one yet, go here:   Once she’s set up in New Zealand, Sue will once again be shipping shoes to anywhere in the world. Yay for that.

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