By: Grayson Miller
The fashion talent that’s nestled in our city consistently amazes us. In our pursuit to expose our readers to the fantastic products that are designed in Canada, we’ve discovered a shoe brand that we think is the next big thing. We wouldn’t be surprised if we spotted Benjamin Daedfyshe kicks flipping through the pages of GQ in the near future.
A couple of weeks ago I had the opportunity to sit down with Benjamin Daedfyshe’s Founder/ Creative Director Patrick Cornish to get the scoop on the Benjamin Daedfyshe brand and to find out what it’s like being a footwear designer based out of Toronto.
The positioning of the Benjamin Daedfyshe brand is actually pretty interesting. They are the first footwear brand to debut a line of sneaks to be worn with suits. If you’re a hard-core rules -focused sartorialist you might be turning your nose up just a little, but it’s 2013 and yes you can wear sneakers with suits. That is, if they’re the right sneakers. By designing a more refined shoe, Cornish has created a shoe that makes it easy to style with tailored garments.
When we dove into the “how did you get your start” questions, we discovered that Patrick has the right foundation for a successful brand.
To start, Patrick witnessed first hand that many men who attempted to pair sneakers with suits were doing it completely wrong. Converse with your tux at your wedding? Cute … but it really just doesn’t look all that great. He further cemented his ideas while working in the Harry Rosen shoe department literally analyzing everything that he came across.
“When I first started, I was designing t shirts. I started looking around, and saw that a lot of people were doing it. Many were better than what I was doing, some were worse but I found I didn’t have anything unique to offer. With footwear I found I had a unique point of view” he tells us. “Initially I was sort of looking at a cool upscale sneaker… the early samples were heavily influenced by Lanvin, and I came to the realization that there weren’t a lot of sneakers out there that people could wear with a suit. I worked at Harry Rosen for a few years in the Shoe Department and I heard people asking for an in between shoe, a shoe they could wear with [ tailored garments].” “Working at Harry Rosen, I spent hours looking at footwear and constantly refining the product.”
Knowing what customers are looking for and then creating a product to fill a hole in the market is exactly what Patrick did, and why we think Benjamin Daedfyshe is a brand to watch.
Designed in Canada, and made in Portugal, all of Benjamin Daedfyshe shoes are crafted by hand using premium leathers. If you’re wondering about the quality, if you do a little research you can discover that Daedfyshe shares manufacturing facilities with some of the world’s best-known luxury brands in the world including Lanvin and N.D.C. The combination of old- Europe craftsmanship with a contemporary Canadian design makes Benjamin Daedfyshe kicks some of the cleanest and most interesting sneaks on the market right now.
Next time you’re looking to rock a pair of sneaks with a suit, step up your game. Think Daedfyshe.
Photo Credits: Check him out on twitter @Geoffalan
Check out more photos here