Andrew McDonald is the Sydney shoemaker whose bespoke footwear treads the line between classic and contemporary. Part sculptor, part alchemist, his obsession with premium materials and sustainable production is making the traditional art modern.
The story captures the essence of what McDonald is about: an internationally renowned shoemaker whose stellar celebrity following and cult status are powered by a humble passion for the craft. A classic reimagined as Mr McDonald's thing, and a tour around his workshop showcases a buttoned-up Brit sensibility with hints of a steampunk soul; think Harry Potter meets Mad Max. Where modern fashion is obsessed with making products faster and cheaper, McDonald's shoemaking is slow and expensive.
A shoemaker dedicated to the craft for more than 20 years, McDonald's constructions exhibit a desire to push things forward design-wise and yet remain true to the raw beauty of his materials : "What I'm doing is celebrating the scars", he says fetching black-rimmed glasses down from his forehead and pointing out the scratches and ripples that decorate the Yak boot toe. "I'm celebrating the natural integrity of the material."
While the primary focus of McDonald's business is retail he also serves as an instructor teaching apprentices from Australia and beyond the art of shoemaking.
"My shoes honour the leather for what it is" Andrew McDonald