Tough to the sole
As versatile as the sneaker but smarter
What you didn’t want
You lot know what you like, so we asked for your help in making our Derby Shoes. We hot-footed through your 4,930 replies and got to grips with your likes, and more importantly, your dislikes. You obviously like to make a splash and wear your shoes hard:
Don’t pass the comfort test
The outsoles comes off
It's a shoe-in
Making a great pair of shoes starts with finding seriously good leather. For both the Black and Burgundy Derby Shoes, we used super-smooth full-grain aniline leather from Spain. Full-grain leather comes from the strongest, most hard-wearing part of the hide—why settle for anything less?
STAND YOU IN GOOD STEAD
The Light-Brown versions are made from waxed suede from the legendary Charles F. Stead tannery in the UK. This stuff is really special—it’s been treated with Brazilian carnauba wax for a water-resistant finish, and is destined to grow old gracefully.
LESS IS MORE
In the same way an old Triumph Spitfire doesn’t need a big spoiler on the back, a good pair of Derby Shoes doesn’t need any extra gimmicks. Ours are made from just three pieces of leather, with a plain-toe and a clean shape. Leave the bells and whistles for the Rio carnival.
NO PAIN, ALL GAIN
Some Derbies have a nasty habit of cutting into your ankles. Not ours though. We cut away the leather from the ankle to keep things comfortable and pain-free. No one should have to suffer for a good pair of shoes.
COMFORT IS KING
For even more comfort points, we added a layer of sponge to the insole. A subtle feel, but it should add a bit of spring to your step—and because it runs from heel to toe, it won’t be snagging on your socks every five minutes.
You wanted near indestructibility, so we’ve constructed our shoe using a Goodyear Storm Welt. We’re not talking tyres here, or storm protection—a welt is the leather rim that runs round the edge of the ‘upper’ and is attached to the sole. It also makes the shoe sturdier for walking. This is skilled craftsmanship here.
YOUR WISH IS OUR COMMANDO
At the heart of a resilient shoe is a strong, shock-absorbing sole. We chose a 100% rubber Commando sole from Itshide. Not only are these super-grippy, and reassuringly hard-wearing, but if they do eventually wear down, your local cobbler will have no trouble replacing them.p.
Laces don’t get much credit, but considering the important job they do, they need to be up to the task. We waxed ours for strength and used invisible low-friction eyelets to give them less chance of wearing through. Remember, for the Derby, you normally criss-cross the laces rather than 'bar' lace them—the preferred route isn’t always the straight one.
CRAFTED WITH CARE
The shoes are made in Portugal by Penha. This skilled bunch have been making Goodyear welted footwear since 1967, and are true masters of their craft. Try on their shoes for yourself and you’ll see what all the fuss is about.
It's Derby day
Here are all the steps travelled from farm to doormat for your Derby Shoes.
Farming Spain and Argentina
Tanning and finish
Picusa and Sheepscar Spain and England
Our aim is to always give you as much information as possible on the clothes we make so you can make an informed decision before preordering. This includes the environmental impact of each pair of Derby Shoes we produce expressed in simple terms that we can all easily understand. There’s no point hiding from it:
of CO2 emitted
Equivalent to 171 km (or 106 miles) travelled by car.
Equivalent to three 5-min showers.
Equivalent to 96 hours of electric heating (in average appartment).
The starting line-up
The Anchorman’s favourite.
Deliveries & exchanges
We deliver worldwide. For orders in Europe, we charge a flat fee of 9€ irrespective of how much you order. For deliveries to the rest of the world, the cost is calculated on the weight and destination automatically at checkout.
Easy to change sizes
If you get the wrong size, fear not, we accept returns and exchanges. For orders in Europe these are free, and for countries, in the rest of the world we ask you to pay the return and we will take care of the cost of sending out an exchange. Just log into your Asphalte account and we’ll get that sorted.
Satisfied or your money back
IT’S A RISK-FREE INVESTMENT
Sure, we work hard on our products, but we won’t take it personally if, for whatever reason, you change your mind about the item you’ve preordered. We’re all friends here, you can be honest with us. So long as the item is in its original condition, with tags and packaging intact, you can send it back to us for a full refund. No worries.
Asphalte began life back in 2016, just four people with a bit of experience in fashion and a simple enough aim: making good quality clothes in a low-impact way. Things started off smoothly enough, and we were picking up a bit of momentum, but something was missing. The idea for Asphalte didn’t really come together until we got our pals on the blower and asked them, ‘Hey, what do you want us to make?’ We didn’t realise it at the time, but this was the turning point. If Asphalte were a scientific discovery, this would be called the ‘eureka!’ moment. If it were a comic book, this was the part where we get bitten by a radioactive spider.
It might not seem like a revolutionary idea. That’s because it isn’t, really. But fast forward 5 years and asking our friends what they wanted has turned into sending you lot our biannual questionnaires, and using your feedback to determine what we release. And that’s our secret weapon. It’s how we make what you want for a good price, and keep waste to a minimum.
Today our team is a bit bigger than four people. In fact, there are 64 of us now. We used to be based in Paris, but now we’ve moved out to greener pastures down in Bordeaux. Besides that, we’re still working in much the same way as when we first started, with the same ideas about quality, sustainability and our customers leading the way.