I have always had mixed feelings when it comes to unlined shoes. Some make them look great as they look like normal shoes, others then make them overly deconstructed looking and that is what ruins it for me as it is just something that doesn’t sit right in my head for a dress shoe to look like a pancake. But Carmina Shoemaker of Mallorca, Spain is definitely one of those that have made a beautiful version of unlined welted footwear that maintains its proper look and shape while at the same time giving you the comfort of a deconstructed shoe. And a huge well-done for that as it is no easy thing to do!
The unlined loafer is a great option for the warmer months as the lack of lining allows for a much more comfortable feeling due to the increased amount of flexibility and breath-ability. Having never owned a pair myself and now living in a place that gets disgustingly warm in the Summer months, I feel the necessity to finally indulge in something that caters to this climate. And if live in a place like this too, you will know what I am talking about.
One thing that you have seen on the blog a lot lately is the mention of the resurgence of the bit loafer. And it’s not so much that it disappeared and came back as Gucci and Ferragamo have been doing them since day one and never cease to add new models or stick with their classic ones. But now, more and more brands seem to have finally caught onto this idea, challenging the greats for a stake of the industry. And so Carmina this Spring launched 6 new colorways in this classic model, as a part of the Unlined Collection, showing that the Italian heroes are not the only ones that can make a great Horse Bit Loafer. The only thing that I question, but of course this is an opinion and matter of like, is that all of their buckles are gold.
The Unlined loafer is structurally sound due to reinforcements in the heel counter, toe puff and a tiny bit in the tip of the vamp to keep that shape from falling downwards. I am unsure of what more Carmina does as they have always had a very sturdy construction and even looking at this shoe above looks like a lined shoe when it is not in fact (as you can see when looking at the picture, you see the outer leather that folds over into the lining to give more reinforcement to the panels of the loafer (a very clever thing here) and then below that the actual underside of the outer leather.
And for those of you that are Horween fanatics, you will even be able to see and show off their famous imprint on the underside of their leathers which shows the Horween logo, for the Cordovan options that Carmina is offering in this new collection.
Starting at €341, it is a great deal for a well made pair of shoes!