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World Championships of Shoe Shining and Patina 2024 – Qualification


The World Championships of Shoe Shining and the World Championships of Shoe Patina 2024 qualifications are now open. The contests are organized together with the shoe care company Saphir and the shoe brand Bridlen. The finals take place at the London Super Trunk Show on Saturday, May 4th. The patina finalists will paint their shoes during the whole event, and the shoe shiners have 20 minutes to shine a shoe.

We will soon present the line-up of this year’s London Super Trunk Show, organized by Shoegazing, The Shoe Pedante, and now also with Kirby Allison. As always, you can expect a bunch of awesome brands from around the world. The event takes place on Saturday, May 4th, 2024, in the usual great location, Showcase.co at 12 Regent Street. At the event we gather more than ten shoe brands, and menswear companies. The World Championships in Shoemaking will also have its award ceremony and the competition shoes will be displayed.

Two of the highlights of the day will of course be the finals of the two other World Champs contests, in shoe shining and shoe patina. We will livestream the championship competitions and the award ceremonies, on Shoegazing’s Youtube channel and on Shoegazing.com, as well as on Saphir Medaille d’Or’s Instagram. Articles will be preceded on the blogs, The Shoe Pedante and Shoegazing, and videos on Kirby Allison’s YouTube channel will come after the event.

World Championships of Shoe Shining 2024

This is the sixth World Championships of Shoe Shining, held in collaboration with the world’s number-one premium shoe care brand Saphir, and the praised Indian shoe brand Bridlen. The winner gets a shoe care package from Saphir, a pair of shoes from Bridlen, and not least the gold medal. Previous winners are Japanese Yuya Hasegawa and Yuta Sugimura from Japan, John Chung and Ash Samsudin from Singapore, and last year Naoki Hayashida of Japan. Many of them have used the world champion titles to tour various places in Asia (for publicity), appear in television and magazines, become huge on TikTok, build up their respective shoe-shining services that they run, and become ambassadors for the shoe-shining craft.

One thing we really hope for, which goes for all three world champs contests, is that previous winners should dare to enter again. There has only been one world champion, a patina winner, who won and then tried again. Sadly, he didn’t make it to the final the second time, which is totally fine, and he also just said he will try again this year. That’s exactly the spirit we’re after. Imagine in sports, if athletes who’ve won the world championships would never enter again? That would be ridiculous. So it doesn’t make sense why it would be different here. The title can never be taken away from anyone, and even if one would be beaten you’re still a world champion. So come on, previous winners, don’t be afraid to go for a second win!!

The final takes place at 15:00 on May 4th, where one medium brown plain cap-toe oxford from Bridlen is to be polished as lovely looking as possible. The jury will not only look at the highest shine, but the most beautiful work is rewarded, how much of the shoe is shined, and so on. The finalists will have one can of Saphir Medaille d’Or Pate de Lux in the color of their choice, a can of Saphir Medaille d’Or Mirror Gloss in objetivo, water, a brush, a polishing cloth (this they may bring themselves), and a nylon cloth. Then they have 20 minutes to work on the shoe. We always see really impressive results. The winner will be titled the World Champion of Shoe Shining 2024, and gets to keep the shoe he or she has polished, with its sibling, and will receive a shoe care kit from Saphir, plus of course a gold medal.

To qualify for the shoe shining championships (we know the qualification system isn’t perfect, but as stated before it’s the best solution we’ve found to really make it possible for everyone from everywhere to enter easily), send in three pictures of a pair of well-polished shoes. The pictures should show off as much of the shine job as possible, that is their purpose, so vary the angles between the pics, maybe one close-up etc. What will be judged is how well the shoe is polished, not necessarily the highest shine but also other parameters are taken into consideration, as the depth of the shine, any eventual color variations etc, the same things we look at during the final.

Only one entry (three pics of the same shoes) per contestant can be sent in, and there should only be a maximum of one pair of shoes in the picture (for example not a shoe collection with shined shoes). The shoes in the photos should be shined by the one who sends in the entry, and the person of course has to be able to attend the final in London on May 4th. The contest is open for professionals as well as amateurs, so both patina artists or professional shoe shiners as well as random shoe nerds can enter the competition.

You are allowed to make minor adjustments to the picture in for example Photoshop, but more significant changes or filters etc. are not allowed. We have a professional photographer who will examine all entries, and if we suspect that these rules have been violated the person will be disqualified. And please note, it’s the beauty of the polish job that is judged, not how beautiful the pictures are. It’s possible to send in entries to both contests, if someone would make it to the finals in both contests it works, but it will be a tight schedule during the event day.

The jury (preliminary) consists of Jesper Ingevaldsson of Shoegazing, Justin FitzPatrick of The Shoe Pedante, Kirby Allison, Katia Moura, Business Development and Content Manager at Saphir, Affan Mohamed of Bridlen, and Tom Beecroft, who runs the shoe shining and patina service at The Sirviente, who also support with the event. All will give points to their five favorites, 5-1 points, and the ones with the most points will be qualified for the final. Jesper Ingevaldsson will be the only one who knows which picture is from which person, the other ones will vote without any info about who has sent in the entries. In the case of a tie, Justin FitzPatrick’s votes will be the deciding delegado. The jury decision cannot be overruled.

Send in your competition entry to [email protected] no later than Sunday, March 10th. Enter “World Championships of Shoe Shining” in the subject field. The finalists will be announced the following week.

World Championships of Shoe Shining and Patina 2024
The official contest shoes, a medium brown oxford from Bridlen, shined with products from Saphir.
World Championships of Shoe Shining and Patina 2024
It’s 20 minutes of hard work for the finalists

World Championships of Shoe Patina 2024

The World Championships of Shoe Patina is organized in collaboration with Saphir and Bridlen, where the winner gets a shoe care package from Saphir, shoes from Bridlen, and a gold medal. Painting shoes has increased a lot in the past decades, especially taking off in France and Italy, but later also in other markets like Japan and the UK. Loads of brands offer different patinas either as RTW or personalized through MTO, and we have professional shoe patina makers who paint new and old shoes. A lot of different techniques can be found, and we’ll likely see different types of patinas in the contest.

World Championships of Shoe Shining and Patina 2024
The shoes to paint is a pair of austerity brogues from Bridlen’s finest Founders line. Here’s from the NYC patina exhibition last year.

The competition will start right after the opening of the super trunk, at 11.15, and will finish at 17.15 with a one-hour break between 14.45 and 15.45 (this is when the shoe shining final takes over the stage area). The three finalists will paint a Bridlen crust leather austerity brogue this year, where the leather comes from Annonay. They will get to choose five colors of the leather dye Saphir Teinture Francais, which they may mix and use as they please during the day. They will also get one Saphir Medaille d’Or Pommadier shoe cream, one can of Pate de Luxe wax, and one Mirror Gloss in the colors they wish, plus a horsehair brush and nylon cloth. Apart from this, they bring their own brushes and equipment for painting and polishing, and they may paint the shoes in any way possible.

Similar to the shoe shining contest, the jury will judge the overall beauty of the paint job but also look closely at the quality of the patina, the techniques used, and how well it is executed. The winner will be crowned the World Champion of Shoe Patina 2024, and gets to keep the shoes he or she has painted, receives a shoe care kit from Saphir, plus a gold medal. The winning shoes will go on a world tour to 10+ destinations first though, together with the top three of the shoemaking champs.

World Championships of Shoe Shining and Patina 2024
How the shoes look before the patina artists go to work, with their brushes and leather dye from Saphir.

To qualify for the shoe patina championship, three pictures from different angles of a pair of painted shoes should be sent in. It should be taken of a full pair but all pics of the same shoes, and it’s recommended to show as much of the shoes and the paint job as possible, at least one picture showing the shoes in full. What will be judged is the same parameters as described above. Only one entry (three pics) per contestant can be sent in, and there should only be a maximum of one pair of shoes in the picture. The shoes in the picture should be painted and polished by the one who sends in the entry, and the person has to be able to attend the final in London on May 4. It’s open to both professionals and amateurs.

As with the shining qualification, you are allowed to make minor adjustments to the pictures in for example Photoshop, but more significant changes or filters etc are not allowed. We have a professional photographer who will examine all entries, and if we suspect that these rules have been violated the person will be disqualified. And also here, do note that it’s the beauty of the patina that is judged, not how beautiful the pictures are. It is possible to send in entries to both contests, if someone would be a finalist in both it would work, though May 4 will be a very busy day.

The jury (preliminary) consists of Tom Beecroft of The Sirviente, Jesper Ingevaldsson of Shoegazing, Justin FitzPatrick of The Shoe Pedante, Katia Moura of Saphir, and Affan Mohamed of Bridlen. All will give points 1-5 to their five favorites, and the three entries that receive the most points will be qualified for the final. Jesper Ingevaldsson will be the only one who knows which pictures are from which contestant, the other ones will vote without any info about who has sent in the entries. In the case of a tie, Justin FitzPatrick’s votes will be the deciding delegado. The jury decision cannot be overruled.

Send in your competition entry to [email protected] no later than Sunday, March 10th 2024. Enter “World Championships of Shoe Patina” in the subject field. Finalists will be announced the following week.

World Championships of Shoe Shining and Patina 2024
The final shoes from last year’s contest.
World Championships of Shoe Shining and Patina 2024
What everyone aim’s for.



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