McGuffin & Purpose, a new menswear label, is built on old-fashioned values: quality and considered craftsmanship. But it’s using a very modern medium to get its shoes made: a Kickstarter campaign, to present men with an updated style of desert boot.
The label is a partnership between Melbourne-based menswear designer James Cameron and the founder of luxury sock label Fortis Green, Ray Wilmoth. McGuffin & Purpose works to a well-known style with its debut product, the timeless desert boot.
“There’s something meaningful about starting with shoes,” Cameron says. “They’re a literal and figurative foundation on which to build. Ray’s a shoe guy, loves them, he gets really excited when we talk about them. It’s infectious and I love it.”
To create the perfect boot, James and Ray spent much of the design process taking apart existing desert boots, assessing what could be done differently and what could be improved upon. Every element, down to the eyelets, was analysed to build the best-possible shoe.
The result was a product that stayed surprisingly true to the original worn by British troops in Egypt during World War Two. Details include genuine crepe for the sole, and the use of the stitchdown construction method – the simplest yet strongest method for attaching uppers to the sole.
Each pair of boots is made completely by hand in the Portuguese town of Guimarães, a UNESCO Heritage site famous for shoemaking and textiles, and are available in either natural, unlined Italian suede or cognac calf leather from France.
While the current focus remains on the development and release of the label’s signature boot, Cameron has no doubt McGuffin & Purpose will continue on in its role of purveyor of quality goods for men.
“I think that from shoes we can do anything, but it’s not really whether it’s footwear or tailoring, or whatever. The whole point of McGuffin is quality. We just want to apply the same level of detail and quality to all future projects.”