Getting custom shoes made in Buenos Aires

Custom Tango shoes
Image by //sallycatway.com/

EVERY shoe store (except 2×4) will tell you that they do “custom” shoes: “Anything you want!”. We learned that what this means is that they will change the colors and materials of the models they
make. It has NOTHING to do with the fit.

If you have a VERY unusual foot, what you actually need to do is invest in having your own custom last (in
Spanish “molda”) made (US $500-$1000). That is the wooden foot that they actually build the shoe on. (God
knows why they are not casting these in polysomething the same way they make orthotics, but they are not. They have to be hand-carved out of wood.) Then you carry these around the world with you and ask shoemakers to make shoes for you on it. It’s difficult to find anyone who makes these any more. We have a friend who swears she can only find one guy in the US who will do this. We found one guy in Buenos Aires, Ruben at Tootsie in Palermot. He is flaky and expensive, but he can do it. Call before you go to pick it up,
because it will not be ready and you’ll waste a trip. Ruben at Tootsie, Charcas 4795 at Godoy Cruz15 57 80 60
10.

If you have a SOMEWHAT unusual foot, what you are looking for is a shoestore that *happens* to make their shoes on a lasts/moldas that are close enough to right for you. Remember that shoes are made on UNIQUE
wooden moldas, one for each size/heel hight/toe shape combination. So for example a store may have 6 or 8 moldas for a size 41 man. These were handmade god knows when and are NONSTANDARD. Go everywhere, try on shoes until you find one that is comfortable. Then say “I want MODEL COLOR BLAH BLAH made on the molda that was used to make THIS SHOE IN MY HAND.” If they say “we can’t make the model you ask on that MOLDA” believe them and don’t push. Keep searching until you get a YES to that question. (You could still get screwed if the molda
you want is busy on another pair of shoes and they try to use a different one and don’t tell you, but if you
think that happened because the shoes don’t fit like the ones you tried just Walk Away from however much
deposit you paid.)

We learned all this the hard way. One of our friends recommended FATTOMANO and loves working with Juan. We
were very excited to having matching shoes made there, which ultimately did not fit either of us and were
unwearable. You should try there, but be sure to follow our procedure. Juan at Fattomano Guatemala 4464 you must take the exact address with you when you go because there is no signage whatsoever,
just ring the bell. Phone 11.4832.3156

The other important thing is that your custom shoes will NOT be ready when they tell you. Do not even bother
going to the store to pick them up on the appointed day, just call and ask if they are ready. If they say
“next tuesday” or “tomorrow for sure at 4pm” do not fall for it. Again, call before you go. Do not go (or even
put the pickup in your schedule) until you have received confirmation over the phone that the shoes are in hand (“they will be here this afternoon” does NOT count!). This will save you a LOT of power. This
also means that if the date is 2 days before you go, you are already screwed, because they will not be ready
and you will spend your last days while you are trying to pack and do everything you want to do racing there in a taxi or waiting at your house. This will happen repeatedly. They will usually deliver the shoes to you on the last day, but it’s really not worth the stress. It’s better to negotiate when you make the order if they are not ready by X date (SEVERAL days before you are scheduled to leave) they have to pay the international shipping fees to send them to you. They will want to say no, and they will not want to write
anything down, but I cannot tell you how many people have been driven crazy by this process in their last days in the city. It’s not a good use of your power. It’s best to expect the shoes not to be done on time. Set a convenient date (several dayd before you leave) to return to the store for pickup. If the shoes are not ready on that date, do not agree to another local arrangement, just say “you’ll have to ship them to me in my home country, as we agreed.” And go enjoy your last few days.

 

Style Guides

UltraVioleta tango clothing for men and women is coming soon! International shopping for the most elegant and sexy tango clothes is about to happen right here.

In the interim, I recommending a few designers and shops that I love, and curating their collections just for you.

Curated

Books

Power is the courage, confidence, and competence to make things happen. I want to create in a way that’s incomparable and define my own compensation package. You too?

Syntax of Power is a raw, potent, and spare revelation of how I got to where I am and how I take on the struggle every day.

This book is not about tango, it’s about everything else.

It’s about stepping into the darkness of change, learning how to take care of yourself, and making things happen.

Dyv stands for Duro y Vio. We were inspired by a 2007 conference at Harvard University about tango as a transnational culture. Also we wanted to create something that would help people to imagine a queerer tango. We forbid ourselves to use the word ‘passion’ and instead tried to articulate the experience more precisely.

Argentine Tango is more than an elaborate and difficult dance, it is an international culture of intimacy, desire, and dignity. No mere romance or memoir, the intricately woven stories evoke tango’s true mysteries … the elation, the frustration, the compulsion…

We published the book in 2009. Dancers asked “how did you know what I was feeling?”

Silences in history. Silences by code. Silences of fear. You already know that Tango’s silences can be sublime and they can be devastating.

What I do in my blog is use myself as a lens – sometimes a microscope, sometimes a telescope. I try to be as honest with myself and you as words concede. Then I try to find a deeper meaning and imagine a pathway for us.

A blog post can be a fragment, a wisp of inspiration, an outline for thinking. A book must complete and reconcile it all. Now I drag the social scientist to the scene to enumerate the facts of the case, the mystery which brought both stardom and tragedy to my life.

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