Maine Attraction: A Closer Look at Rancourt & Co.

Exquisite, handcrafted shoes are the product of good breeding.

“We think we are a bit different up here. There’s something in the water,” says Kyle Rancourt, explaining the fine craftsmanship that goes into his Lewiston-based company’s camp moccasins and wingtips. Following a five-decade-long family tradition of making shoes by hand, he and his father, Mike, launched Rancourt & Co. in 2009. Though their artisanry is rooted in the past, the footwear purveyors have a very forward-thinking business approach: In addition to their private-label work for Ralph Lauren, Red Wing, and others, Rancourt & Co. has an expanding in-house collection, and offers styles with fully customizable details. (Customers can use the company’s online tool, for example, to cobble together three-tone beefroll suede penny loafers with different sizes and widths for each foot.) Watch for a collaboration with the British designer Greg Chapman—think sleek boots with straps and flannel-accented pairs—debuting this fall.

855-999-3544, rancourtandcompany.com

Photograph by Mark Fleming

Photograph by Mark Fleming

The company’s “Read” leather boat shoes will be released May 1. 

Photograph by Mark Fleming

Photograph by Mark Fleming

An employee sews a camp moccasin by hand. 

A steel die used to cut leather.

Photograph by Mark Fleming

A steel die used to cut leather. 

The ink-transfer machine stamps the size and lot number onto each shoe.

Photograph by Mark Fleming

The ink-transfer machine stamps the size and lot number onto each shoe. 

A craftsman sorts various leathers.

Photograph by Mark Fleming

A craftsman sorts various leathers.

Kyle Rancourt on the factory floor.

Photograph by Mark Fleming

 Kyle Rancourt on the factory floor.

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