"People often ask me about the design and manufacturing process of my shoes. Each
pair requires over 200 hand-made steps. After more than 20 years of working in Italy,
I am still amazed at the skill and artistry of the craftsmen who bring my shoes
to life. There is no substitute for this attention to quality and detail to achieve
the finest result."
THE DESIGN: I believe that men’s wear is based on enduring classics.
For generations men have worn suits, jeans and jackets although the cut and color
changes, sometimes dramatically. Men have always worn certain styles of shoes too:
lace-up oxford, loafers and so on. My job is to rethink, refresh and redesign these
classics to give them the update they need to work with the modern man’s wardrobe.
First I study the fashion collections and influences on men’s wear, both dress and
casual, for that season to decide on the last, leather, colors and textures that
will be shown. The proportion and shape of the shoes must go hand-in-hand with dress
and casual clothing. It’s true that wearing the right shoe can make the outfit,
but the wrong shoe will ruin it. My shoes are versatile, distinctive and enhance
THE LEATHER: Good design requires the best materials to bring them
to life. Only “first choice” leather and soles are used in the production of the
To Boot footwear.
THE LAST: The shoe totally changes character with the shape of
the last (the form around which the leather is stretched). Will the toe be rounded,
squared or elongated? Each subtle choice requires a different sole, method of construction
and leather. These differences give the shoe its individual character and use: for
the office, dinner and a night out, or for casual wear.
CUTTING: To Boot shoes are always cut by hand. That way the artisan
can match the skins and cut only from the best part of each hide.
SEWING: After the leather pieces are cut, they are sewn together
as required by the design pattern. My designs are generally very clean in line,
but often utilize special detailing such as contrast piping or stitching.
LASTING: The stitched-together leather (the upper) is then stretched
over the last where it remains for ten days to two weeks. This allows the leather
to “memorize” the shape of the last, which makes the shoe hold its shape – even
after extensive wear.
FINISHING: Depending on the leather, the shoe is now cleaned, polished,
buffed or brushed. Artisans hand-apply color and burnish to the desired end-result.
The shoes are then stuffed with tissue, wrapped to protect them in transport, and
boxed for shipping.