For over 135 years, Joseph Cheaney & Sons has been producing some of the finest, handcrafted English shoes in the same Victorian factory, in a small village on the outskirts of Northampton. A dedicated team of craftspeople work collectively, making some of the most celebrated footwear in the world. From the initial cutting of premium calf leather to the intricate stitching and final polish, the entire process is all still undertaken meticulously by hand.
As a business, Cheaney remains committed to the traditional shoemaking processes, which are fundamental to the production of Goodyear-welted footwear. While innovative investments are continually pursued, it is this 150-year-old process that is still executed today. This technique is not only a universally accepted indicator of quality shoemaking, but also a unique feature that allows footwear to be repairable multiple times over, prolonging the life and service of the shoe.
Crafting footwear that offers a modern reaffirmation of its rich heritage and identity, the styles are timeless but contemporary, rebuffing a trend-led aesthetic. It is this dedication to evergreen fashion and an emphasis on longevity, repairability and craft that sets Joseph Cheaney & Sons apart.
In early 2021, Cheaney launched its Eco-Aware collection, building upon the inherently sustainable characteristics of its main collection and encouraging customers to leave less of a carbon footprint. The new range uses natural raw materials like the chrome and metal-free leathers sourced from acclaimed English tannery CF Stead. The cork bottom filler is renewable, and the soles are made from Vibram Ecostep recycled rubber. Cheaney also celebrated Pride Month by presenting its Union Jack embellished Lyall derby brogue boot in a prominent digital campaign.
Also in 2021, after 12 months of meticulous planning, a capsule collection for men and women was released in collaboration with fellow Great British Brand Barbour, makers of the iconic wax cotton jacket. Exclusively available at Selfridges in London, the Barbour x Cheaney Re-Loved collection celebrated the legacy of both brands, weaving each other’s company stories into the very fabric of their products. Customers’ well-worn but much-loved Barbour wax jackets were donated to Cheaney, then cut and stitched onsite into the side panels and pull tabs of its shoes, thus taking an old garment at the end of its cycle and repurposing it to give it new life, rather than throwing it away.
Of the unique partnership, Cheaney’s joint managing director, William Church said, ‘The collaboration brings together the best of British craftsmanship, heritage and innovation and we are incredibly proud to have partnered with Barbour on this project. Repurposing yesterday’s Barbour jacket into today’s shoe demonstrates a new level of sustainability in what Cheaney is able to achieve.’