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Sole Man!

Sole-Man-Buffalo-NY-4Elmwood Avenue is landing a cobbler. A friend of mine, Brian Gavigan, is opening up an old school shoe repair business that harkens back to the days when people actually cared about quality and service pertaining to footwear. This is great news for Elmwood because Brian also plans on offering myriad other retail and service oriented offerings, including men’s belts and leather bags. He’s even going to have a custom line of shoes with his name on it, made right here in the US.

Sole-Man-Buffalo-NY-1It was back on Fathers Day that Brian had a sit down with his family and told them that he wanted to go into the cobbler business. In college he was known as The Keebler because he was always deconstructing shoes and then putting them back together. “I’ve been looking for a job where I can work with my hands and be creative,” Brian told me. “I’ve been apprenticing locally at a couple of shoe repair shops, and now I’m ready to open my own store called Sole Man. It’s next to the custom sneaker place on Elmwood called Sole High.”

Sole-Man-Buffalo-NY-3In order to get his business off the ground, Brian bought out another local cobbler, and is now in possession of all of the master tools that he will need to make a go of it. Brian is of the belief that we are living in a throw away society where most everything made is Sole-Man-new-Buffalo-NY-1garbage. In order to reverse the trend, he’s going to be selling recrafted shoes that will actually be affordable – typically hard to find at a decent price. “I’ve been scouring for suppliers,” said Brian. “I’ll also be carrying lightly used shoes from fashion shows after they are sent out to market. Customers will be able to find new sunglasses, hats, coats, belts… and if you need to shorten the belt, I can do that in-house. And if you buy a pair of shoes, I will be there down the road to keep them in shape. This is pretty cool. I’m so excited about it. Learning this trade has been an awesome experience. Who would have thought that a young cobbler would be coming to Elmwood?”

Brian is anticipating opening this coming December, coinciding with Small Business Saturday. The shop will bring a sophisticated synergy to the block, which already boasts Simon Salon, Get Dressed, and Sole High. Already I am looking forward to taking in a pair of John Fluevog boots that blew a heel last weekend. I may have to check the closet to see what other shoes and boots I can dust off and salvage now that Sole Man is close at hand.

Sole Man. Coming soon to the corner of Elmwood and Anderson.

Sole-Man-Buffalo-NY-5

 

 

Written by queenseyes

queenseyes

Newell Nussbaumer is 'queenseyes' - Eyes of the Queen City and Founder of Buffalo Rising. Co-founder Elmwood Avenue Festival of the Arts. Co-founder Powder Keg Festival that built the world's largest ice maze (Guinness Book of World Records). Instigator behind Emerald Beach at the Erie Basin Marina. Co-created Flurrious! winter festival. Co-creator of Rusty Chain Beer. Instigator behind Saturday Artisan Market (SAM) at Canalside. Founder of The Peddler retro and vintage market. Instigator behind Liberty Hound @ Canalside. Throws The Witches Ball at The Hotel @ The Lafayette, and the Madd Tiki Winter Luau. Other projects: Navigetter.

Contact Newell Nussbaumer | Newell@BuffaloRising.com

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  • BuffaloBoi

    Isn’t Sole High still next door? If so, I totally get the whole concept and names.

  • BuffaloRox

    Good luck!  It’s very hard to find a cobbler.  Jimmy’s on Hertel is the only other one I know.  There used to be two downtown but I think they’ve both closed.  Must be tough to make a go of it when cheap shoes (both cost and quality) make them disposable.  Good shoes are well worth the upfront expense as they are of better quality construction (last longer), provide better support (and feel great once they’re broken in) and can be re-soled numerous times.

  • this is great news! i remember 20 years ago there was a shoe repair place in the same building as campus wheelworks.

  • Rand503

    BuffaloRox There is one at Transitown Plaza out in the burbs.  been there forever and very good.

  • Rand503

    Glad to see Elmwood is stepping up its game.

  • OldFirstWard

    I thought millennials only wear converse sneakers.  Hopefully there are a lot of Gen X’s and Boomers close by to keep the business stocked. 
    I really like the hands-on business and especially the building where it will be located except the storefront addition is one of the ugliest add-on’s that I’ve seen. The owner of this building made a horrible mistake by accepting these plans from the architect that was hired to design this storefront.  It is really too bad because the building looks very attractive and has a really nice paint scheme.  But it should have had a beautiful old time storefront addition built on to complement the building behind it if only a competent architect was commissioned to design it.
    One other negative is that this is the Elmwood dead zone. This is the part of the street where everyone just drives by without looking because quality small businesses are in low supply on this section of Elmwood.  This stretch of Elmwood has a lot of apartments including that intimidating high rise disaster down the street.  I hope the owner can mount a nice sign and some LED lighting to advertise the business.

  • flexme

    Great addition to the street.

  • North Park

    OldFirstWard You really don’t know anything about people younger than 40 do you?

  • FirstRingSuburban

    Awesome, I have a pair of brogued oxfords in need of some TLC.

  • ZennFemm

    John Fluevog!  I am SO impressed with you.  Did not realize what a stylish rogue you apparently are!!  :-)))

  • ZennFemm

    John Fluevog!  I am SO impressed with you.  Did not realize what a stylish rogue you apparently are!!  :-)))

  • BuffaloGals

    OldFirstWard I thought boomers only wore New Balance.

  • jaffryan

    OldFirstWard “I thought millennials only wear converse sneakers.  Hopefully there are a lot of Gen X’s and Boomers close by to keep the business stocked.”
    If that’s honestly what you think, then you are completely out of touch with reality.

  • BuffaloRox
    yeah, judging by what i see at second-hand stores, there are a lot of people who will discard a pair of shoes rather than replace broken laces or clean/polish them.

  • monkeymoon

    Thrilled!  So needed, it’s been awful saving up shoes that just need a tiny repair and now I can do it easily and conveniently.  I am so happy to read this.  Can I take a number and get in line?  I’m afraid I will need a reservation!  Maybe I’ll leave a note on the door. . .. .

  • monkeymoon

    Thrilled!  So needed, it’s been awful saving up shoes that just need a tiny repair and now I can do it easily and conveniently.  I am so happy to read this.  Can I take a number and get in line?  I’m afraid I will need a reservation!  Maybe I’ll leave a note on the door. . .. .