J.M. Weston is a luxury shoemaker famous for its elegant and timeless Parisian style with roots in the American shoemaking process.
In 1891, Édouard Blanchard founded the J.M Weston factory in France’s Limousin region, an area known for producing fine leather goods. Around the turn of the 20th century, Blanchard’s son Eugene travelled to Weston, Massachusetts to learn American manufacturing techniques, like the Goodyear welting process. He returned to France with his new knowledge.
In 1922, Eugene met Monsieur Viard, a Parisan socialite, at a horse race in Paris. The chance meeting led to joining of forces. That year, the pair patented the J.M. Weston name and opened the first store on the boulevard de Courcelles in Paris.
During the 60s, rebellious French mods, known as the Bande du Drugstore, adopted the J.M. Weston loafer as their shoe of choice. The mods reinterpreted the classic loafer by wearing it sockless with jeans.
In 1986, J.M. Weston opened its first international boutique in New York. The opening reflected the company’s longtime dedication to its ties to American shoemaking techniques. Today, the company sells footwear in 40 branded boutiques, as well as department stores worldwide.
Unlike many of today’s fashion companies, J.M. Weston is not trying to constantly reinvent its designs. The 180 loafer, which was introduced in 1946, remains one of the brands’ most popular models, along with other favorites like the 677 chasse and 598 demi-chasse blucher.
The luxury shoe company instead collaborates with artists of various mediums, like contemporary fashion designers Jean Charles de Castelbajac and Kitsuné, writer Didier Van Cauwelaert and filmmaker Cédric Klapisch. These collaborations result in footwear in the classic Weston shapes with a bold new twist on styling. The 2016 release of the Le Moc’Weston in Yves Klein’s iconic Klein Blue is one such bold creation.