The idea of walking in a father’s footsteps is as old as the art of making shoes itself. It’s the idea on which Wootten is founded. Jess’s dad, Ross Wootten, began making bespoke footwear in the early 1970s in South Australia under the tutelage of Bulgarian Master Craftsman and internationally renowned shoemaker, George Koleff.
His son, Jess Cameron-Wootten — now the head cordwainer at Wootten — remembers sitting in the corner of his father’s tiny studio as a young boy and marvelling at the care his father took as he crafted shoes from scratch.
Ross was not just a brilliant cordwainer, but also the consummate people person; in many ways the quality of the relationships he built with his customers was just as important as the quality of his shoes.
Fifty years on, Jess continues his father’s tradition of fine shoes and boots coupled with excellent service.

Wootten’s current team possesses more than 70 years of combined experience. Jess was joined by his wife, Krystina, in 2015. Krystina brought with her plenty of winemaking and tasting experience, which has yet to be successfully combined with the leather side of things. She has learned the ropes of the business quickly and is involved in footwear and accessory production as well as looking after all the customers on phone, email and in the shop.

As a team, Wootten continues the Custom Fit tradition, making high quality footwear from scratch. But today they also concentrate heavily on fashion and produce made-to-order boots and shoes, as well as a broad range of leather accessories, that say as much about a person’s individual style as they do about their interests.

The days of manufacturing in inner city Melbourne are past, and in 2018, after nearly thirty years in Melbourne, the workshop relocated to the historic city of Ballarat. This is where the production happens for all the leather goods and footwear occurs and is our flagship store, showcasing our ever-expanding collection with a full range of fitting stock to try on. A small satellite store still remains in Melbourne and contains a limited selection of boots for customers to try on, namely the Gordon, Jack and Bob boots.