Laszlo Vass is an endless source of knowledge on shoemaking. He literally “wrote the book” on handmade shoes, a seminal part of the library of anyone interested in how men’s shoes are made.
For 35 years, Laszlo Vass has maintained an unwavering commitment to continuing to make all his shoes by hand, using hand-welting techniques, while the world of shoemaking has moved to Blake- and Goodyear-stitching machines. Now, with an expanded team of twenty craftspeople, he produces what may very well be the finest ready-to-wear shoes in the world and has customers and aficionados throughout the world.
The handmade shoemaking tradition in Hungary goes back to the Austro-Hungarian monarchy of the 19th century, and some of the styles and techniques have barely changed since. For someone accustomed to English and Italian shoes, Austro-Hungarian classic designs like the Budapester (wingtip) or Alt Wien (punched cap toe) will seem clunkier than their Western European cousins. But that rounder shape and higher toe are a perfect match for a robust construction and goyser welt construction. They complement country tweeds and casual clothes more easily than sleeker, sharper shoes. The heft of the hand-welted sole, the robust lasts, the imperfect beauty of hand hammered nails and finishes, and the high quality leather mark Vass as shoes of distinction.
For those looking for a sleeker shoe, Vass partnered with Roberto Ugolini to design a series of “Italian” lasts that marry hand-welted construction with refined shapes. These shoes work well with clothes cut on a trim, Italian silhouette.
When we set out to start No Man Walks Alone and bring the work of the most talented makers to a wider audience of men, Vass was one of the very first names we put on our wish list. We are thrilled to present a collection of shoes we commissioned with Laszlo Vass especially for our store.