Last weekend I traveled to Berlin on an occasion that I’ll reveal at the end of my story. The journey allowed me to test a shoe which is almost legendary for those who prefer the tweed or the flannel or who live in areas where the temperatures aren’t too generous. I am talking about the Crockett&Jones Pembroke.
Pembroke was a shoe with which I have been almost obsessed along the years, but for various reasons I didn’t buy it. The truth is that it is a goodyear shoe, and lately I have been more focused on handwelted shoes. Nevertheless, Pembroke continues to remain a mystery. Why do I like it more than other pairs which, at least at the first sight are superior to it?
The truth is that it’s been a long time now since I started buying shoes with my soul instead of my mind. Pembroke is one of the shoes which, even if I could take from a bespoke shoemaker, I wouldn’t because Crockett&Jones makes them very well and somehow I would feel that I stole something from their spirit. Even if they came out better from a construction point of view, or if I had access to better leather, it still wouldn’t be enough. Because Pembroke is supposed to be made by Crockett&Jones, just like I wouldn’t copy Edward Green’s Dover.
In my mind, Pembroke is the English shoe by excellence. It is robust, gentry aristocratic, comfortable and highly resistant. It is the shoe for tweed. I confess that I ventured a little to wear it for the first time in a day when I was walking in Berlin. Usually I have problems with factory shoes when I first wear them, but I am quite perseverant, so we fit in with each other quite fast. With Pembroke the experience was very pleasant. Due to the 325 E last, there was absolutely no discomfort in walking.
The leather, at the first sight, is a bit stiff, but it softens relatively quickly. In two days of intensive wearing it becamse soft, and a bit of Gel Antique from Farmaco gave it a very beautiful nuance. I will not lengthen my impressions about Pembroke. I consider it a special shoe, one of those models to which you get after a certain age, after going through various exotic choices, and which you simply know is your model.
In the end, I still have a query regarding Dainite. Although it may be useful for country regions, it is very annoying in the city. If I was responsible for the collections from Crockett&Jones, I would add a less annoying City Rubber sole. And I would patinate it similarly to Connaugh Anniversary Edition.
Anyway, in the near future I will re-sole it with a city rubber and I will give it a patina. It will be interesting.
Going back to the days spent in Berlin, the reason was partly pleasure an partly business. In my future plans has instilled an idea which, like all great ideas, begot its own life. The idea materialized in Petru&Claymoor, a soul project in which I am now deeply involved. Details about this, however, in the next episode.