Genesis of a Berwick

August 30, 2012

All journeys undertaken, regardless of how long and risky the avatars of the route make it, always begin with a humble first step.

Making a Berwick shoe is an adventure that takes time, dedication and requires the coordinated effort of many people in a complex choreography.

From selecting the leathers in the source tannery, when the shoe is just a sketch in the pattern designer’s imagination, until the final stage of the process when it is placed in its box, lovingly wrapped in tissue paper and then put in its canvas bag and bound for its point of sale.

In the interim, in a production line that combines techniques devised in the late nineteenth century that require high labour specialisation only achieved through years of experience with modern computer-guided cutting systems, the magical transformation of a small piece of calfskin or high-quality cowhide into an elegant object will have been made that will protect our feet from the elements, supporting our weight and accompanying our step for many years.