“Our inspirations and sensibilities probably come more from Dublin, Edinburgh or London than from Milan or Monaco. In strategic terms we also recognised that there was a gap in the Melbourne market for harder-wearing footwear. It all just lined up.”
- Scott Lewis
It’s been three years since Beggar Man Thief opened its doors to the men of Melbourne, founding partners Scott Lewis and Marc Godfrey finding themselves “with the right product, in the right place at the right time”. Taking its style cues from Britain over Europe, the business has brought new energy and insight to the local men’s footwear scene.
Scott: “The differentiation between the UK and, say, Italy and wider European styling has for us been a bit philosophical and at the same time a little bit strategic I suppose. Philosophical because we just feel like the proportions and the 'grunt' of the British footwear has always suited the Melbourne boys better than the lighterweight European styles. Let's just say most Melbourne blokes are not 70kgs and whipping around town on Vespas.”
But they are, Scott insists, increasingly style savvy. And willing to learn. It’s an attitude the boys at Beggar Man see as being supported by the local industry as a whole.
Scott: “There is just such a fantastic men’s fashion community here. The good tailors know the good shoemakers, the good shoemakers know the good denim designers, the good denim designers know the good barbers, and everyone knows each other. Guys have had the appetite to learn more and experiment and have wanted to talk about the way to do things. I just think the community has welcomed that, and allowed them to do that without making them feel intimidated, and so things have blossomed.”
As for where he sees the men’s style movement progressing, Scott is overwhelmingly positive.
Scott: “Guys have made the leap now and understand that whatever you're into, do it with a sense of style. If that means jeans and a t-shirt or a three-piece, I don't think anyone judges, as long as you're doing it well.”
244 Clarendon Street, South Melbourne
ph: 9686 3006
Andrei is the co-creator of the new Melbourne based Barnaby Shop sock company & we had to admire his cycle print socks when we stopped him ask for a photo. Andrei was shot in South Melbourne wearing a classic pair of 'Jensen' calfskin cap toe oxfords from Santoni.
Chris was a stylish standout during a wednesday workday lunchtime & it was no surprise when he told us he worked for Suit Your Style tailors. Chris was waiting for a coffee when we grabbed him on Little Collins street, wearing a pair of suede wrap boots by H by Hudson.
Head of the Chin Chin restaurant kitchen, Ben Cooper is Melbourne's most fashion forward chef. He's a man with a particular fetish for footwear, photographed in a pair of waterproof boots by Norwegian brand Swims
Hairdresser Luke has only been living in Melbourne for a few months & his classic British style is still evident. His creepers were bought from 'Underground', a classic Rock n' Roll footwear store in London's Soho.