Not every shop is created equal. Some are much better than others. Whether it’s because of the people who run it, the location, the stuff they stock or just the vibe there are places that stand out above the rest. This is not a complete list of all the best shoe stores in the world. This is just a couple of my favorites, some are gone and some remain.
It’s a dream factory. If you love shoes and you have never been here then it must be at the top of your list ! There are several Flight Clubs now, including a new flagship store, but I still remember walking into this Soho store and being amazed by all the variety and colour stacked floor to ceiling.
Not at all the sort of thing you would expect in a crummy B-grade Mall, in a City that flies way off everyone’s radar as far as shoe collecting is involved. But Warped is amazing one of the finest and most diverse collections of stuff for sale that you will see anywhere in the world.
A long time hero that disappeared and then re-opened in 2010 with more force and vigor than ever before. Footpatrol is great not just for it’s location, vibe and amazing Tier 0 hookups. The people who work there are just plain cool, especially Jimmy, who goes out of his way to make everyone feel like a valued customer.
Not the most famous branch of this infamous Japanese store. But the Skit in Osaka is cooler and more low key than most of the other stores in Japan. I was the only customer in the shop when I took this pic and the guy behind the counter had very limited English to match my terrible Japanese. He still made it clear that he was cool with me just looking around at their amazing collection and couldn’t hide his enthusiasm for the pics of my collection that I shared with him.
I know that a lot of people love the 21 Mercer store, but it has nothing on 1948. In my opinion its the coolest Nike store in the world. Back alley location, obscure branding and a constantly innovative evolving design. Simply put, no body does it better.
Its also one the only places I have ever physically lined for shoes. When I was foolish enough to head down early and hope to catch a pair of the AM1 Patta x Parra, despite being unsuccessful on that occasion I did manage to actually score a pair. (but that’s another story)
Which brings me to my final store… well actually it’s two. Gone but never forgotten the twin towers of Dutch shoe mastery Patta and Precint5. Legendary temples of cool footwear.