J.FitzPatrick men’s shoes aren’t for everyone. They’re for men who want meticulously crafted fine leather shoes to pair with their expertly tailored suits. Justin FitzPatrick puts his heart and “sole” into every pair of shoes he designs. He’s a young man who has always loved shoes and realized early in life that appearance improves self-esteem. “When you dress up, you feel your best,” he said. “When you feel good, you perform better. It really affects you psychologically. And shoes are the starting point, the foundation.”
At J.FitzPatrick boutique, 101 Thompson Street in New York City, you can come in, try on what you like from the collection and walk out with a pair of fine shoes. You can also purchase made-to-order shoes at the store or online. Follow the easy step-by-step process on the website to choose a style you like and select the color, shape and sole. A new collection debuts in the fall and the spring, but older designs are always available. Send FitzPatrick a photo of an older style you like, and he can have it made.
FitzPatrick grew up in Seattle and got his first job working with shoes at Nordstrom. From fitting thousands of men, he learned about style and comfort. But he learned something about design when he wasn’t at work. He read all the magazines about menswear and saw a big difference in American and European shoes. He found the American shoes ugly and the European shoes beautifully crafted. He knew he needed to leave America to really learn about shoes.
FitzPatrick moved to Florence, Italy where he apprenticed with a giant in the industry, the late bespoke shoemaker Stefano Bemer. He returned home when his funds ran out, and started a blog that he continues today. The Shoe Snob (https://theshoesnobblog.com) takes you into the world of shoemaking to understand the craft and the industry.
Next, FitzPatrick moved to London, where he worked on famed Savile Row doing military-grade shoe shining at Gieves & Hawkes. During his two-hour commute on the train each way, he began making designs that formed the basis of a portfolio. Pattern maker Tony Gaziano taught him about patterns and lasts (the solid form around which a shoe is molded), and made a bespoke last from FitzPatrick’s feet to be used as a model for an emerging J.FitzPatrick brand. FitzPatrick made his first collection and sold it at Gieves & Hawkes. After nine years in Europe, he returned to the States, where his brand is becoming known by men who value their footwear.
View the complete J.FitzPatrick collection on the website. You’ll see impeccable classics, innovative twists and some unusual styles. FitzPatrick loved the look of Victorian button boots and was inspired to create his own. “I can’t keep them on the shelf; I sold three or four pairs yesterday,” he said, even though it’s not boot season. He also has a unique quilted dress shoe. “When I lived in London ten years ago, everyone had a navy quilted jacket,” he recalled. “I like quilted dressing and decided to make a quilted shoe. It’s classic, black and fun. And selling well.” The shoe is called the Spokane. The Washington native names most of his designs after something from his home state.
FitzPatrick is giving customers an incentive to become fans of his shoes. Buy two pairs of ready-made shoes at the store and get the lower-priced one free. He suggests bringing a few friends to take advantage of this offer. Sounds like a shoo-in!