Whilst shopping with my dear friend, author and raconteur, Tyne O’Connell, we passed through Burlington Arcade by the Royal Academy. Whilst she had her crocodile courts polished to perfection by one of the most trusted shoeshine boys, I noticed that his laces on his glossy Oxfords were a strident contrast – deep rose pink. By his side was a woven basket of rainbow coloured laces which tempted the idea to change, well, a few of my existing black laces on black Brogues and the like for anything from lime green, sunshine yellow, ruby red or sky blue – just as Paul Smith’s shoes often are informed by.


An ideal opportunity one might add to balance the lace colour with that of a tie. For many this will be a bridge too far. Cross it. Our charming polisher said that he knew only of 3 or 4 serious professional shoe shines in London. For £6 for a fine finish, keep the tradition alive. And if you have 15 pairs which need gleaming in expert hands, he will visit your abode.