All the English shoemakers at Pitti seemed to be putting their countriest feet forward–Edward Green and Crockett and Jones, associated with sculpted lasts and top drawer finishing, proved they could indeed make beefy, lug soled shoes. However, I was perhaps more surprised by the elegance on hand at Cheaney, which makes for many private labels and has been trying to grow its own-labeled line (see an interview Nick V. did with Cheaney co-owner William Church). The firm has a 125-year history in Northampton, and a complicated recent history that includes a separation from the Prada group. Cheaney’s reputation is more as a solid value than an aesthetic leader, but the models, materials, and construction on hand in Florence were impressive. Country boots, fiddle-waisted city shoes, and a dose of character in mixed-panel brogues all showed that Cheaney is an important option to consider when choosing your Goodyear-welted, Northampton poison.