During my time in Milan, I basically did 4 things: 1. Went to Lineapelle to look at and source new leather/fabrics/cloth etc. for making shoes; 2. Went to the Ilcea tannery for a tour and to talk about using them in the near future; 3. A visit with the brothers behind Barbarnera and 4. Last but certainly not least, a long overdue visit to one of my favorite shoemakers, Mr. Riccardo Bestetti. It was a great trip overall and I had a lot of fun and not to mention how I excited I am to start using the new materials/leather that I will be sourcing for my shoes in the never-ending quest to make them the best that they can possibly be. That being, I have 3 long posts to write up for this trip but what you may not realize is that for each post, I took about 70-100 pictures and it takes time to edit them all. That being, I thought that I would give a small sneak peak into what I was up to, starting with these beauties by Bestetti.
I went to visit Bestetti and as I was taking pictures of his stuff and doing some bits and bobs, he asked me to try on a pair of shoes for fitting. This pair of shoes just so happened to be the ones in the pictures in this post and also happened to be a sample that Bestetti had made on his own personal last. Strangely enough, Bestetti’s feet are nearly identical to mine as this bespoke last felt great on me! I told him that they fit brilliantly and he said, ‘okay Justin, please take them as a small gift and token of my appreciation. That is if you want them of course.’ One thing I have learned about my time with Italians (remember that my wife is one and so is all of her family!) is that you never turn down a kind gesture, no matter how small or big. But it’s not like I would have wanted to anyway, as these things are absolute stunners and I have never had anything with Croc on it before. I was very grateful to Bestetti as he has always been one of my favorite shoemakers and even though I have my own line (and thus shoes), it would be an absolute pleasure and honor to wear a pair of his, especially when they are this cool! —- Grazie amico mio!
Stay tuned on a much longer and more picture heavy write up of my time in his workshop and with the man behind the shoes.
On a completely separate †note, for those of you in Singapore, Kevin Seah has just recently taken stock of some Stefano Bemer shoes for those of you interested in trying a pair on and maybe ordering one too. He will have them for 1 month so get in there while you can. Kevin will also be hosting Gaziano & Girling for a trunk show next Monday and Tuesday so don’t miss that either!
More to come soon!
Justin, “The Shoe Snob”