For those that may not know, Stefano Bemer (the man) passed away about 2 years ago now. During the time that it occurred there was a lot of speculation as to what was going to happen with the company. About 6-8 months later, it was announced that the Stefano Bemer name had been purchased and that the company and shoes would live on. It was of course great news, as a name that was synonymous with great footwear deserved to be carried on. Now what many people may not have ever known was that during the Stefano days, there was his brother, Mario, who was heavily involved in the company. He ran the RTW shop, clicked the uppers by hand for both RTW and bespoke (cut out the leather patterns) and was the man that taught me to polish shoes. Of course he did more than just this, but this is just to give you an idea.
So when the takeover was happening, there was the new owner and there was also Mario. While I have no idea of what really occurred, one can always rely on the fact that too many chefs in the kitchen is never a happy ending. That being, Mario Bemer set out to start his own line as he had always wanted to offer something just a tad bit different. He wanted to offer a product that was strictly Italian, so he found a small factory around the outskirts of Florence, sourced only Italian calfskins and suedes and built his new line with completely fresh and unique designs of his own.
As you can see he is very passionate about color, two tones and the use of fabrics. He also set out to start an actual brand identity by creating a Mario Bemer signature, which are his red O’s. You can see them on the eyelets of each shoe, as well as on his soles and in the logo of his brand name. This branding paired with his unique designs and colors used, I think will make it very easy to recognize a Mario Bemer shoe. They are unmistakably no one else’s. Another feature that you will notice is his use of natural colored soles. On very few of his shoes, has he actually dyed the welt/sole. All of these details are truly representative of a good brand identity and I think that he has done a brilliant job at that.
He tells me that for now he only has one last, which is a very rounded, classic last. He is working on a chisel toe and of course as time goes on will make things a bit more edgy and with his personal detailed touch. But for now, he wanted to release his brand with something simple, classic and that could appeal to many. All of this shoes are goodyear welted, but are made from a special sole that bends like blake stitched shoes, literally being able to bend it in half with your index fingers. This promotes the utmost flexibility and comfort for those that like that type of feel. The RTW shoes start from €680, MTO from €850 and the bespoke shoes from around €2800 (I could be wrong but somewhere around there). It was great to see Mario as it had been too long and I wish him the absolute best with it all. For all inquiries, don’t hesitate to email him at [email protected]