Fancy footwork

Oliver Sweeney’s pop-up shoe tattoo parlour at Selfridges

A refined and traditional sartorial aesthetic is being imbued with rather roguish charm from Monday March 11, during Oliver Sweeney’s week-long residency on the first floor of London’s Selfridges. Following the triumph of the luxury shoe designer’s first pop-up last September, two tattoo artists are returning for a second stint to personalise Sweeney footwear with hand-drawn artwork.

Using the same type of Japanese pigment employed for Marc Jacobs’s 33 (and counting) tattoos, designs can be inked on the upper shoe or sole, and in their simplest form take as little as 20 minutes to complete. With myriad optionsin a brimmingportfolio that includes musical staves, flags, city skylines (pictured), notablequotes and portraiture, making an executive design decision may require some serious creative reflection.

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Those with a penchant for the unique should also note that the artists can work from images and personal designs brought in by customers. Selecting a tan or light-coloured shoe is recommended to appreciate the most fanciful footwork to the full.

From brogues to Derbys (from £199), all the shoes are modelled on Sweeney’s anatomical last, designed to mimic the natural shape of the foot. The tattooing service will be available online after Sunday March 17 from £25, but free of charge with purchases made at the seven-day pop-up – a worthwhile excuse to hotfoot it to Oxford Street.

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