This site is fast becoming an hommage to the Playboy rather than the Weejun it seems. But perhaps that can be forgiven when the Weejun is fairly ubiquitous and easy to find in comparison to decent playboys.
Well, thanks to a pseudonimous tip off yesterday morning from FNB contributor and fellow crepe sole enthusiast Tom, I was able to order a pair of these Portuguese made playboys from Japanese shoe label Verginia Shoe, (makers of some excellent suede and crepe reissue models such as Clarks Weaver for those so inclined).
The shape of these playboys is much closer to the Original Playboys models but with a touch lighter sole – the OPs I saw in Gothenburg a couple of years back were seriously heavy. Interestingly, the Verginia model retains the leather rolled welt that the crepe foxing is attached to.
Speaking with John Simons on Thursday about this very subject, where to get some rounder toed PBs made up, John said that one aspect of the Sanders models he liked was that they never had any returns for the crepe foxing coming away. That’s because the Sanders are made with pre-formed crepe units, clever, but forcing the toe shape to be only the almond one. Their rounder toe model (that Tom owns) which they make for Trickers to sell in Japan has IMO an uglier pre-formed sole, complete with faked rolled welt grooving.
Whether the Portuguese model will stand up to a lot of wear (to be fair none of the foxed models seem to) will be seen, but meanwhile they are a really nice shoe. Whole sizes only from Oi Polloi and the pair that arrived at 7.30 this morning from them are a tad big as a 10, but definitely a 9 would have been too small.
All in all I think a really nice alternative to the Sanders shoe (their boot still remains a favourite) and the Portuguese know how to make suede and crepe combos – they’ve been at it for decades. Coupled with the hand of the Japanese we have a pretty close replica of the classic Eaton Clubman shoe.
Usual excellent swift service from Oi Polloi by the way…