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Clinch x Allevol Jodhpur Boots

To celebrate the release of the Allevol x Clinch Jodhpur Boots, we had a little catch up with the man behind one of Japan's most elusive footwear brands, Minoru Matsuura.

Brass Tokyo was opened by Minoru Matsuura in 2007 with the intention of re-storing the oldest Goodyear welted shoes and boots. Brass began by offering a complete re-vamp of boots and shoes many thought were long past their wear by date, from broken welts to ruined insoles. Matsuura-san also began to re-last customers footwear for them using his own specially developed lasts, totally changing the shape of their footwear, and offering the wearer something truly unique.   

After several years perfecting this craft, he launched Clinch, with their famous Engineer Boot the first offering in the line-up. Operating out of their small Tokyo based workshop, Clinch provide a unique and eye-catching collection of boots and shoes, hand-built by a passionate and dedicated small-team.   

For the first time we are offering the Clinch Jodhpur Boot in a Shinki Horsehide suede, a collaboration with Allevol. For the launch of this first-time collaboration for Clinch we were able to sit down with Matsuura-san for a bit of a Q & A and dissect the Jodhpur style and speak a little bit more about Clinch Boots in general. 

Minoru Matsuura of Clinch 

What inspired you to create the Jodhpur style?    
 My inspiration behind Clinch comes from trying to alternate between European and American imagery, taking inspiration from these different sources simply so I don’t get bored with them! I think the European element of the designs are true in the ‘George’ Boot, so I decided to add to this and design the Jodhpur Boot with a high height and pull-on design.

Takashi Okabe of Allevol

What were some of the difficulties and improvements you had to make from the sample to the final product?    
 With the design of the Jodhpur Boots the main point I considered was the height and position of the ankle to be of utmost importance. Once we decided on the position of how the boots fit in relation to the ankle position the rest of the design fell into place. The higher the ankle sits in the back of the boot, the harder it is to take on and off but once the foot and ankle correspond in the correct position, these are extremely comfortable. We spent most of our time adjusting the balance between these two components to get the ideal fit for the ultimate comfort.   

Jodhpur Boots have a more dresser image than a lot of the styles in your collections. Did you intentionally create this style with a smarter style in mind? 
We didn’t specifically create the Jodhpur to appear ‘dressier’, we aim with every model we produce, to ensure a ‘clean line’ with the wooden block lasts we use, so this could give the appearance of a ‘dressier’ style like you mentioned. Although, I also think the perspective of a ‘dressier’ style can change easily with the different components used to put the shoes or boots together, for example, the material, design, sole specification etc. I think Jodhpur Boots can have a work-like appearance if we used a different material like horsehair butts and if it had a different sole composition. I would say I am not as conscious of making dress shoes as I am classic styles, although each person has their own way of interpreting it.

What are your impressions of this collaboration Jodhpur Boot?  
 I think these Jodhpur Boots fit incredibly well because Shinki Leather’s horsehide roughout is very soft and I think they are very comfortable because of this. As Clinch has never made a collaboration boot or shoe before I think it is a good opportunity for us to collaborate on a new product. I’m very happy we were able to bring this to fruition and am very happy with the outcome.

And finally what are your future plans?
We have a dealer who has approached us about the possibility of a Trunk Show which we are excited about. Following on from this we’d like to expand our communication direct with consumers to help order our products.   We have also made apparel, our BSC Uniform and have received several requests for this. We developed this to work in the store and the workshop and have received requests for this as stock so this is something we are looking to develop further.