Saturday, 17 February 2018

Review of Goth Pikes and The Gothic Shoe Company

I was lucky enough to be given some money for Christmas so I decided to treat myself. I absolutely love 1980s style pointy toes also known as pikes. In my years as a teenage 80s goth these are what I wore. Well The last two years I have been investing in these shoes. As far as I know there are only two companies who currently make them. Both do vegan options if you are interested in that.

One is Goth Pikes based in Berlin ( although it seems they come from Glasgow!! So maybe they are Dropshippers!) and you can buy these via Etsy - however I would strongly advise you do not waste money with this shop.

The other company is The Gothic Shoe Company based in London. I do recommend this company.

I have not shown the Gothic Shoe Company shoes here. This review is about the bad service and rip-off selling of Goth Pikes. If you do want to see my The Gothic Shoe Company shoes I wore them here:

Well I originally bought a pair last year from The Gothic Shoe Company . They are lovely, well made and so good I bought another two pairs this year. 

A total extravagance really but I am hoping they wear well as did my 80s shoes. I do not wear them very often whereas then I lived in these but I am not a teen anymore but a middle aged woman with a job in an office so these are really my weekend lovely shoes. I also at this point should stress I usually buy Deichman or New Look shoes so spend about £20-40 on a pair of boots so these are for me very much a treat and a luxury.

When I bought all 3 pairs  from The Gothic Shoe Company - two pairs for me and one for a friend -they all arrived in perfect condition and very well packaged with no in transit damage at all. 

The Gothic Shoe Company actually carefully wrapped each shoe in paper inside the packaging box which is a small effort to take you would think and this for shoes costing £75 so not cheap shoes these. The last two pairs were a little cheaper being bought in this years January sale and again they came very well packaged.

So I would sincerely recommend The Gothic Shoe Company if you wanted a hand made pair of winkle pickers. 

Then onto their competitors.

The styles are slightly different to The Gothic Shoe Company which is why I am interested because its nice to have some variation. Both shops make your classic multi-buckled boots which you actually have to undo to get them on and off. Yes, no easy zips for these. They are the real 80s style. And of course 60s as well.

Goth Pikes shoes are in US sizes so I was slightly worried at buying them in case they did not fit. I emailed to check sizes and the shop did answer my messages and I went for my usual EU39 which is apparently a US8. The Goth Pikes shop charges in dollars so I have to pay an exchange rate but I bought these with money I was given for Christmas so I go ahead and buy at just over £90 including shipping. So really a very expensive pair of shoes and costing more than those from The Gothic Shoe Company.

I had to wait for 3-4 weeks for them to be made and delivered. No problem. I wait and they arrived. I had to go to the post office on Sunday to pick up due to me working so not in when the postman came but that is fine. I take them home. 

The box they came in is in perfect condition which as far as I can see means they have suffered no heavy weight or crushing in transit.

But they are damaged in 3 places. Small damage - but when you pay £90 for a pair of hand made shoes you do expect them to be perfect.


Perfect box as you can see. No sign of crushing so how were they damaged in transit? 

Obviously they were not damaged during postage were they?

They were already damaged when they were packed and sent to me.

What a rip-off company is Goth Pikes as you will read!

So here is the photos of my damaged shoes:

I am very upset since as you can see for a £90 pair of handmade shoes these are sub-standard to say the least.

I would have been unhappy to recieve these from a  Sale but at least it might be understandable. To sell these full price is quite disgusting of any reputable company.

Though obviously Goth Pikes cannot be a reputable company despite their being part of Etsy. Read on:

My conversation with the Etsy shop owner runs as follows:

Hi, Today I got my boots. They fit fine.

However they are damaged in 3 places.

Since the box they arrived in is in perfect condition and undamaged they must have been put into the box already damaged so I am not very happy at all.

Since the box is perfect this is not damage from postage!

I believe you have sent me "seconds".

When you pay these kind of prices you do not expect to be ripped off by receiving a damaged pair of boots. Please see photos of damage:

(The photos are the ones above. I could not transfer them from Etsy)

I have not written the review yet to enable you to try to put this right.

I got my answer:

Goth Pikes 

Date: 20 hours ago 12:26 EST

Message: Hello,
we have never sent out second hand shoes, it is infact impossible as we make them after they are ordered.
the dot mark can only have been caused from the bat buckle wing poking into the side of the shoe while it was packed and in transit,
the crease i have no idea.
You can send them back for a replacement if you would like ?

kind regards

My reply:

By “Seconds” I did not mean second hand but imperfect / not up to normal standard.
The marks could be caused by the buckles but then the shoes were packed loose in a box with no way to stop them moving around. I love the style and they fit, but to stop this surely all you need to prevent in-transit damage is to wrap them in a bit of paper.
To be honest I am not convinced they were damaged in transit anyway. The box is not crushed or damaged in any way. This suggests they were already damaged when they were packed into the box prior to posting.
Surely to get an indent that would mean something would need to be pressing on them and the box is in perfect condition indicating than no high pressure has been applied, so since the box is not crushed how could this happen in transit?
Having bought three pairs of pikes from your UK competitor ( the gothic shoe company) who also posts I can say they pack their products much better and I have not received any damaged goods from them.
I was keen to try out all companies selling traditional gothic pikes since the styles differ. I am not so far impressed by your company since if you are selling by mail order surely you should pack them better to ensure no damage.
Will you pay the return postage? If yes then I do wish to have them replaced please.


Goth Pikes

Date: 2 hours ago 07:15 EST

Message: Hello,
we will not cover the postage back ,
we will replace them for free and be paying the new shipping to you.
Its so rare , but that was my guess that the wing point pressed on the shoe.
with wear & shoe polish this will seem barely visible,
but we are willing to replace them if you are not happy with them

kind regards


So Goth Pikes sent me a damaged pair of shoes. They never packed the shoes properly but I actually really do not think the damage happened in transit. To get them replaced I must pay return postage which I think is very unreasonable. They even say they do not see how the shoes could get creased in transit so what happened? I assume then that they made them from damaged fabric in the first place expecting me to just accept them. And to say the marks will polish out - I suspect not, but even if they do this is a brand new unworn and expensive ( by my standards) pair of hand made shoes. Why should I need to wear them to help to hide the damage they arrived with. I would seriously think twice about paying as much as 50% of the normal price in a sale for this particular pair of shoes. They are just too damaged.

I actually am strapped for cash despite my splashing out on these and I think it very unfair of a company to expect me to pay for return postage when they have clearly at the very least not packed their product correctly for shipping but more than likely they just sent me a second rate pair of shoes.

So then I get in touch with both Etsy and Paypal.

Etsy were useless I have to say. Its my fist time buying anything via Etsy and is highly likely to be my last time. There are plenty of other platforms to buy from and they did not help me at all.

Paypal were wonderful. They even gave me back the return tracked postage which came to £8.55 (since on the end I have to send back to Glasgow not to Germany) as the Etsy seller described. I wonder do they really come from Germany at all? Paypal also gave me back the original costs including shipping at the same exchange rate as when I bought, which is wonderful because the pound has fallen since Christmas so I would have lost about £15. But I did not thanks to Paypal.

My verdict:

The shoes are lovely. They fit well but I would sincerely recommend if you want a pair of goth pikes buy them from The Gothic Shoe Company and get a nice undamaged pair instead.
And make sure you pay via Paypal and not using your card on the Etsy site.

I am very upset about the whole affair and have yet to leave my Etsy review. It will be bad and they may well remove it. I suspect if they can Goth Pikes will get it taken down so all I am able to do to warn others is to blog about this disreputable Etsy company who are sending people second rate damaged shoes for very high prices.

And just so you know No, I have no financial connection or any other connection with The Gothic Shoe Company  either. I just genuinely like their shoes. They are a bit cheaper than Goth Pikes and  you get the quality product you expect from a company selling hand made shoes at relatively high prices. I am going to buy a new pair form The Gothic Shoe Company this weekend infact.

I will never be buying from Goth Pikes ever again. In fact I am seriously unsure about anything else on Etsy since this is my first time venturing there. I have looked for years and never bought. Safer maybe to avoid.

I sincerely hope this review may help someone not to waste money with this disreputable Etsy shop.

Thanks for reading and feel free to leave a comment