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Feit Direct

Feit Direct is an online shoe store full of pieces that cost more than a few pretty pennies.

Still, these vegetable dyed leather shoes are a real work of art. They’re minimal—focused on showcasing pristine cordovan in a rainbow of neutrals.

A little background— Feit was founded by two brothers, Josh and Tull Price, as a way to make high-end shoes that were good for the environment. The goal is a lofty one—to eliminate all of the packaging, material waste, and chemicals associated with the footwear industry.

FEIT is designed in New York and made all around the world—the US, China, Australia, and Italy. The reason for this is, the designers seek out the craftspeople that best fit the shoe—on an individual basis.

Vegetable-tanned shoes, according to the site, require some extra TLC. Feit recommends removing dirt with a large horsehair brush, then using a smaller brush with leather cream and finishing it all off with a polishing cloth.

The shoes do come with a warranty, though it seems that repairs are limited to things like a ripped stitch, not necessarily any scuffs or other damage caused by regular wear and tear.

What we liked

Feit Direct shoes have a really unique look. They’re the kind of shoes that you’ll enjoy looking down at as you go through your day, especially if you have an affinity for full-grain leather.

Most notably, the brand has created a limited run of hikers, hand-sewn, of course, with a bamboo sole. They’re finished off with a Vibram-sole and Goodyear welt stitching, which promises long-term wear.

The idea of a hand-sewn hiking boot is impressive—and they look amazing. However, with the ~$1000 price tag, it’s hard to imagine taking these guys out on the trail or wearing them on a snow day. Still, the website promises that these boots are built to withstand the elements.

Another standout on the site is Feit’s take on running shoes. Again, they’re built to last, and for comfort, however, we can’t exactly imagine them on the basketball court or at the gym. The runner, from a fashion perspective, is quite a success—it’s got the elegant construction of a pair of dress shoes, but brings that casual comfort to the mix, too.

At $540, the runners are a real investment piece, but they’re more accessible than the hikers. But, they do stand to become a daily staple—nice enough for a casual workplace, these will add some flair to a basic sweater and jeans or perfectly complement a pair of chinos. We could even imagine these working with a slim cut suit for something a little more unique.

Finally, our favorite look has to be the hand-sewn slipper. This is another $500 shoe, one with clean lines and no-laces or visible stitching in sight—save for a single stripe on the back heel. The slipper is done in the style of a high-fashion version of Vans slip-ons and stands to work with anything from a pair of shorts to cuffed chinos. It’s something of a replacement for a moccasin or a loafer—built for summer. The black pair though could work year-round, depending on where you live.

What we didn’t like

The price is the main downside. According to reviewers, the shoes are totally worth the high price tag, and we believe it. But—it can be hard to justify the price tag—at the end of the day, spending $500+ on a pair of shoes, no matter how beautiful, is indulgent for a lot of guys.

What’s the verdict?

If you have money to spend, Feit Direct isn’t a bad way to part with some extra cash. The shoes stand to be a real investment piece. A way better buy than say, the latest sneaker collaboration. Feit’s entire collection consists of pieces that won’t go out of style. Well, unless you think minimalism is a passing trend—otherwise you’ll wear for these shoes for years to come.

That said, you probably want to follow the instructions on the website for proper care. That’s right, you’ll need those horse hair brushes, the right polish, and maybe just keep them indoors, away from harm.

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