The Shoe Snob Blog

April 29, 2013

Written by , Posted in News

Ascot Shoes – Online Shoe Store

The idea of just owning an all black or brown pair of shoes for your wardrobe is changing . Two tones and unconventional colored shoes are quickly creeping their way not only onto the shelves of once known conservative shoe companies, but are also spreading across the internet like a virus thanks to all of the companies that offer MTO services. Gone are the days of the “norm,” of fitting into society comfortably so that no one notices you. Now is the time for individuality, expressing it through your shoes and doing so with colors, but still maintaining an elegance about yourself. I do believe that these things are becoming more and more accepted, so long as the people pushing it don’t go overboard and show up to work in their pink pony haired brogues. Rather a nice navy blue cap toe oxford, or racing green wholecut. These things should be acceptable and thanks to stores, whether online or shopfront, like Skoaktiebolaget and Ascot Shoes people can purchase MTO like models that are already in existence without having to take their dive themselves and risk regretting it……

Ascot Shoes, who has been around for sometime, is the king of the eBay shoe shops, selling shoes brands anywhere from VASS, EG, C&J & John Lobb all the way to Jeffrey West, Angello Galasso and a few other quirky Italian labels. Mainly however, is his relationship with VASS and doing things that are quite fun and unique, such as shoes with 3 colors, lots of two toned (particularly with snuff suede and brown calf) and a selection of amazing boots. It is also rumored that one of the VASS’s lasts (the K last) is named after the owner of Ascot Shoes, which would entail a strong relationship between the two, at least I would presume so! That being, you find things on there that one might not otherwise dream of. It allows you to shop without really needing to be creative as it would appear that the creativity has already been laid out for you and you simply need to choose which one you fancy most. It’s great too as it allows you to see how something could turn up without ever having to pull the trigger on the purchase. The majority the battle of doing MTO is really deciding if your idea is going to come out like you envision it. But if it is already there, in the flesh, then it makes the risk far less….

Companies like this, I believe, will start to become more and more, because it is so easy to just get a plain black or brown shoe, and anyone can go find one. But it is hard to find something unique, yet I feel that more and more people are wanting those unique things that no one else will have, or at least very few will. Therefore, mark my words that shoes that would have usually been thought of as an MTO type, will start to become more readily available. Thanks to Ascot Shoes, Skoaktiebolaget, Made to Order Paris and anyone else doing this for paving the way to the future of great shoes being made easily available!

All pictures courtesy of Ascot Shoes

  • It’s an interesting phenomenon around spending your money for something unique versus spending your money on something classic. Historically I’ve been very bad about starting with the “staples” and then going for the outlier styles. While I usually love seeing a man’s closet full of classically styled and appointed cloths and shoes, there is something so appealing to me about the guy that has a closet full of artfully patina’d Berluti shoes, bright pants, and the wildest of the plaid tweeds.

    – Mr. Kusab

  • Anonymous

    Indeed a great online shop, great service and high quality items. However, from my own personal experience, having a pair of MTO directly ordered at Vass’s is less dear than ordering it through Ascot. Same with their RTW models,they are overpriced. Last time I checked, Ascot prices are quite high for seconds or sales/end of line shoes (stamped R or S)- considering the price Ascot pay to the factory outlets when buying R and S shoes.

  • Anonymous

    It’s nice to see all those shoes at Ascot. They could use some better pictures though. They don’t really do the shoes justice.

    • yea, I am with you there….those pics definitely do not do them justice at all….in fact, if I did not know any better I would say that they hurt them quite a bit…

  • Alex B

    I’m told that if you email them instead of using the “Buy It Now” on eBay, they will give you a better price without eBay fees, and excluding VAT as appropriate. Once you take that into account, the mark-up really isn’t a lot as I understand it, and the convenience is there of a read-made selection of oddities in your own size. It’s not such a bad deal as I initially thought. I admire this guy.

    Either way, they must have built a really good relationship with Vass: there can’t be much margin for Vass in wholesaling, so maintaining a reasonable mark-up as a retailed must have meant compromise on both sides. As for the product, I don’t like all the MTOs they put together by any means, but I like that they push the boundaries anyway: that way they’ll never please everyone with everything, but we shoe-perverts can always find one weird thing that we can really love.

    • Thanks for that Alex…..good to know for some who wish to good forward with them…bypassing eBay fees is always a good thing…

  • Oh yeah, been aware for a long time. As for unique you are preaching to the choir; I’ve been designing in my head English tan/cognac spectators with crimson wings and heels or navy wings and heels for over two decades. My outlet has been custom cowboy boots. Affordable and MTO as a main feature of product lines is a recent awareness of mine, thanks to you. I give people like you credit for pushing companies to this.

    You could imagine a guy that has his flamboyant boots made wants not only great lasts and mto colors and pieces but also stout. Able to take that urban pounding, inclement weather. Vass is the best I’ve found for that. Just out of the budget. And Vass is indebted to someone for moving to the beautiful lasts and exciting made to order options. Those lasts prior to U, F, and K I would be embarrassed to be seen wearing (maybe the New Peter but not at that price.) The debt could well be to you.

    You are so awesome for the shoe obsessed, bringing new affordable brands into the spotlight. Meermin, ed et al, markowski and its flashier brother septiemme largeur. As you have pointed out, this has pushed even the dullest of well made brands, Allen Edmonds, into more tasteful and unique offerings. In the past the best option I found was an Alden MTO for about 500.

    Appreciative and indebted,


    • those specs sounds lovely!!! You should get on it! You are right about those Vass lasts, i am too happy that he took on board some new ones when he did as I am not found (at all) of his traditional ones…. Thanks for the kind words…happy to do what i can to help the shoe industry and see more men wearing better shoes, even if it is promoting other people’s products!

  • gfu2873

    Where can I purchase a pair of these awesome shoes

  • Ph Kunter

    It would be nice to have the pictures labeled properly with which “last” the pair is.