John Lobb - But Which One?
A Tale of Two Lobbs
Do you know the story of the two Lobbs? John Lobb founded his boot-making business in London in 1866. He opened a branch in Paris in 1902.
In 1976, Hermès bought the non-UK rights to the John Lobb name and the Paris branch. The original Lobb shop in St James's, London, however remains family-owned and distinct from the Hermès Lobb.
Hermès has steadily built the ready-to-wear side of its business, but still makes bespoke Lobb shoes. The UK Lobb is bespoke only and holds royal warrants for the Duke of Edinburgh and the Prince of Wales.
The two Lobbs remain supportive of each other's work. And so should we.
My Brush with Lobb
I bought a pair of the (Hermès) Lobb Truro loafers last year. Made in England. Brown calf leather and fully leather-lined (see images). I thought they fitted well when I tried them on. In the box they went till this summer. Thrilled, I was so much looking forward to wearing them. Sadly, dear reader, I have to inform you that they are no longer with us.
I come to try them on again and they're slipping at the ankles. Disaster! (I think this might be the first exclamation mark on The Tweed Pig. I find them a bit loud for my taste, but I think we need one here to convey the appropriate level of disappointment.)
The perils of buying ready-to-wear. Can feet shrink? I certainly blame my feet. Anyway, I did the decent thing and made sure they found a loving new home.
Beautiful things as well. Shame. But that brief moment we had together was special and has made me long for more Lobb.