Shoes should always be treated well and on an individual basis. Good shoe maintenance is essential not only for the appearance but also for the footwear durability and function.
For the Butler, a good shoe maintenance program is essential. Not only for your principal or guest, but also for yourself and your appearance as a private service professional.
Here are some short details to be aware of when it comes to shoe maintenance
- Shoes should always be packed in special shoe bags when in storage and not in use.
- Never mix shoes, pair them and pack separate.
- Polish regularly of course. Rag and cotton with some drops of water and polish cream. Use small circular motions and lots of patience, polishing shoes properly takes time.
- Remember to remove the stains before polishing.
- Use polish with the shoe colour if discolouration occurs and let the polish stay on for some minutes before polishing it with a wet cotton ball. Again in small circular motions.
- Remember that sole and edges also need attention.
- Fabric shoes are best cleaned with lukewarm water and a plain cloth.
- Suede shoes: Use a brush carefully for the cleaning and then some liquid polish. Also remember to spray them with a specially formulated suede spray which helps the material to resist water, salt and mud.
- If shoes get wet, fill them with light paper. Never place wet shoes against heaters or hot elements as these can dry the shoes to fast which can encourage cracks to appear.
- Canvas shoes: Avoid washing machines! Use lukewarm water with a drop of soap and a cloth.
- Never ever use polish machines which you may see in hotels and other facilities, these contraptions wear down the material unnecessarily.
- Contact the households own shoemaker or shoe-delivery service if you are uncertain or have any questions regarding maintenance.
- Always have proper galoshes ready for use. They protect and serve your shoes.
Shoes are important. Good shoes take you good places is a common phrase and the fact is, that a lot of people often look down towards your shoes before they look you in the eyes. So be well dressed, behave like a gentleman/lady, and always keep your own and your guest’s or principal’s shoes shining and in the best possible condition. Maintaining shoes is a classic Butler ‘know-how’, take your time, have patience and take pride in the process. Butler or not, invest in your shoes; protect and maintain them well – After all, it is all about economics, well being and welfare for your body and soul – Shoes…blue suede or not!
«Even the longest travel, begins with a good pair of shoes…»
Written by Tore Berger: F&B Consultant & Professional Butler founder of Berger Consulting