Oak Street Bootmakers is a leather shoes and boots company based in Chicago. The company was founded in 2009 by George Vlagos, who grew up learning the art of shoemaking from his father and master cobbler, John Vlagos. While watching his father’s operation in Chicago, George noticed the lack of quality American-made shoes in his father’s shop and decided to open up Oak Street Bootmakers. His philosophy is simple: boots with classic design made by hand with quality leather, which in his case means Chicago-based Horween Leather. We were fortunate to watch Oak Street make their trench boots from start to finish in their western New York factory.