When did you open your workshop?
In 2002. But my very first bespoke shoe job dates back to 1993, when I was commissioned to make a pair of shoes for a very precious porcelain doll. Since 2004, I have always trained apprentices from countries such as Japan, France, Germany, Austria and Slovenia.
What are your specialisations?
Made-to-measure shoes for men and women, the latter being rather rare in the sector of bespoke shoes. The techniques I use date back to the era of entirely handmade footwear: I do not use machinery or synthetic glues in the creation of my shoes.
How do you innovate this traditional craft?
The innovation lies in the aspect of sustainability. All my materials are traceable and European, no chemicals or toxic products are used, the production is done entirely in the workshop, there is no waste of materials, and the product itself is the opposite of “disposable”.
What don’t people normally know about this profession?
That it takes countless hours to make a pair of bespoke handmade shoes. Each sculpted last, each stitch, each hour worked is dedicated to that particular person. An intense, almost intimate relationship arises between the craftsperson and his or her client.