Design Field Notes

Design Field Notes

Design Field Notes

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Places & Faces

Reinventing Tradition: Joseph Cheaney London

I first visited the London flagship store of traditional men’s footwear brand Joseph Cheaney several years ago when in town for the London Design Festival. Located on Jermyn Street in Mayfair, one of London’s most popular shopping districts for high quality craftsmanship, Joseph Cheaney has been in the fine shoemaking business since 1886. It’s now owned by cousins and fifth generation shoemakers Jonathan and William Church of Church & Co and retains its rich heritage, making beautiful leather goods.

Late last year, the brand reinvented their flagship store and although hip and contemporary, it fits right in amongst the British artistry of its location.

London design studio Checkland & Kindleysides is behind the revamp. History, tradition and craftsmanship have been reinvented with an instore design that inspires exploration and an appreciation for the handmade skill of fine shoemaking.

It’s a theatrical twist on the factory production line with product aligned the walls. Metal framed screens, paneled ceilings and painted brick completes the picture. The highlight is a 1:100 scale model of the Cheaney factory and a display of how genuine Cheaney shoes are made.

Upstairs exudes boardroom gentry with leather seating, portraits of the brand’s founders and white peg-board walls. Indigo and white with natural leather textures add sophistication in a nod to a bygone era.

Anthony Spon-Smith

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