The History Of Loake Shoes

Published: 23rd January 2008
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Loake has been described as '...the unsung hero of British shoemaking' and the company is said to be 'one of the best kept English secrets of the last century.' Comments like this compelled us to look into the history of Loake Shoes to see what makes them so special.

Loake shoes originated in 1880 when three brothers (John, Thomas and William Loake) got together and set up a shoe factory right at the heart of Northamptonshire (the UK's shoe-manufacturing capital). Their aim was a simple one; to produce the most comfortable, fashionable and durable mens shoes at affordable prices. Now, 127 years later, their company has gone from strength to strength and Loake Shoes are now revered throughout the world. Whether you are looking for oxfords, brogues or even mens boots, Loake have something to offer.

Over the past 127 years, Loake has built up a level of expertise in the manufacturing process of classic goodyear welted gentlemen's shoes which is almost unmatched by all the other major shoe manufacturers. Many of the more recently established mens shoe manufacturers don't even use genuine leather but instead use a cheaper material (which is usually imported) to cut back on costs. Although these shoes seem more desirable at the point of purchase, once you put your foot inside them and wear them for a few months, you will soon realise why paying that little bit extra makes such a big difference.

Loake update their product catalogues twice a year and categorise their shoes into four ranges: Loake Shoemakers, Loake 1880, L1 and Design Loake. You will be able to find all of these ranges in full on the Shoenet website. We do not list every single shoe that Loake produces in each range. Instead we have chosen to list the bestsellers as these are the ones that will always be ready to ship as soon as you place your order. The rarer types of Loake shoes are easy for us to get hold of but it takes a little more time as these shoes are not stocked.

As you will be able to see from looking more closely at the photos, Loake shoes are all intricately detailed. Every shoe is manufactured by one of Loake's skilled craftsmen and takes hours to get it into pristine condition ready for sale. It is very rare to find a shoe manufacturer which expertly manufactures brogue shoes like the Loake Savoy, whilst also specialising in more fashionable looking mens shoes, for example the Loake Walker or the Loake 1369.

Please visit ShoeNet and our online shoe shop at and click Loake on the left hand side to see the full ranges of Loake shoes we have on offer. Alternatively you can browse by type of shoe and select your favourite Loake shoe in that way. Whichever type of mens shoe or boot you opt for, we offer free UK shipping and many accessories come free with every pair!

To go directly through to the Loake Shoes section, please click on this link:

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