Been a while since last time, but now once again an insight into the work of the Swedish-Italian shoe brand Italigente. Today, among other things, about where we landed when it comes to the upcoming news in the range where you readers have been involved and have given input, about the first addition in the entry line Italigente Basic, and about the fact that I’m from the 1th of January will start working for Kavat and Italigente full time.


Model development

In the previous Italigente Uncovered article we had a vote on which model you thought we should make for the upcoming seasons. It gave a pretty clear result where two models for our ordinary Blake/Rapdid sewn collection and one model for summer was clearly the most popular ones, and therefore we have now moved on with these. The biggest favorite of yours was an adelaide in polo suede, on the new classic round last 15 with single leather soles. It will be released in the spring, and a first sample looks like this:

 

First sample of the adelaide in mid brown suede.

First sample of the adelaide in mid brown suede.

 

We are not completely satisfied with the design, the vamp has become a bit too short, so we shall correct this to the final model. It should also have the narrower variant of the waist, which this sample shoe doesn’t have. Otherwise, it feels really promising.

The second model in the regular collection was a so-called Plain Toe Blucher in medium brown grain leather on the heavier 08 last, with double rubber soles and storm welt. A bit like a little sibling to the boot Viterbo Torrone, and this will be released for the autumn next year. Here is a sample of it:

 

PTB in grain leather with the shade Torrone.

PTB in grain leather with the shade Torrone.

 

This one we are satisfied with, there’s really nothing that needs to be corrected. The only consideration I have is regarding the leather. Kavat (a Swedish shoe brand, who owns Italigente) has an eco labeled grain leather called Eco Performance (EP) who get a special kind of treatment and becomes very water resistant. Magnus Ericson, the founder of Italigente and CEO of Kavat has talked about the possibility of using the leather also  forItaligente. Something I thought more recently, after my wife and I got into a real shower in Gothenburg last week, and the advantages of this leather became very obvious. Illustrated below:

 

Just after I came inside. The water stays on top, and the shoes are just treated with regular shoe care products.

Just after I came inside. The water stays on top, and the shoes are just treated with regular shoe cream and polish.

Here's a comparison with my wife's Loake in a regular smooth leather, after they both have been dried off. The EP leather is basically completely dry, while the regular leather is soaked, you can see some stains of the original color on the shaft.

Here’s a comparison with my wife’s Loake in a regular smooth leather, after they both have been dried off. The EP leather is basically completely dry, while the regular leather is soaked, you can see some stains of the original color on the shaft.

 

The grain leather that the PTB sample is made of is a very fine leather, but it does not have the characteristics that the EP leather has. The EP leather might crease a bit more and it’s harder to get the same shine on it that you can still get with the regular grain leather if you wish. It’s a difficult choice. If you have comments and input you are more than welcome to write them in the comment field below.

Regarding the summer shoe for next year, many of you liked the idea of a penny loafer in suede. Therefore we moved on with and make a penny for two mocha shades, but instead of Blake stitched which was the plan from the beginning we’ll do it with a Bologna construction. It’s a bit more complicated construction method that in many ways is even better for this purpose since the shoes will be just as slim and light but becomes even more pliable and comfortable. On Bologna you make the vamp like a sock, and then with a Blake seam you stitch on the outsole.

 

One of the penny loafer samples.

One of the penny loafer samples. This sand coloured suede is one, the other will be a dark green suede version. We will remove the heel counter and replace it with a regular centre seam in the back, otherwise the final version will look like this.

 

We have also finally sorted out the new thin so-called city rubber sole on the model Biella II Mogano. The idea was that it would be ready already this fall, but instead it will be releases this spring. There are some details that we still would like to change, but this is how the latest sample shoe looks:

 

Biella II Mogano.

Biella II Mogano, a second sample.

The sole from below.

The sole from below.

 

 

Premiere for Italigente Classic

As you who read the previous Italigente Uncovered artivle know, we wanted to make a cheaper entry-level series with some different base models. We started looking at doing it in the Balkans, where we made contact with a small factory in Serbia. Unfortunately it was very slow with deliveries, and what was meant to be an affordable shoe for the high school graduates etc was not finished until this fall. So we have taken a time out in the partnership with them, however, we did bring home a series of black plain cap toe oxfords to give it a try. The model is called Monza Nero, and is made on an older version of the slightly chiseled 29 last, called 16. It’s made in a local calf leather with fine elasticity from a tannery that also delivers to Prada and Louis Vuitton, with for example closed channel sole and leather board heel stiffener that is relatively unusual on shoes in this price range (priced at €270, or €216 excluding VAT for those outside the EU).

 

Monza Nero, also featured on the top pic.

Monza Nero, also featured on the top pic.

 

As mentioned before, we look at making a continuation of the Italigente Classic series to offer really good shoes in the entry-level price range. We will tell you more about this during 2016.

 

 

Shoe business full time

By the year end I will leave my position as a Communications Manager for a competence centre at the Chalmers University of Technology in Gothenburg, and start working full time with shoes, as e-commerce manager for Kavat and linebuilder for Italigente. It means I will be responsible for Kavat’s web store, and to develop both the content and function of it, and also be responsible for purchase to the shop and other things. On Italigente I will continue doing what I have done on a consultancy basis this year, which means everything from communication to product development, but also some new stuff like the fact that I will work more with the shoes Italigente makes under license for Oscar Jacobson. It will be great fun to do this, both of course to work more with Italigente and develop it further, but also to be work with e-commerce at Kavat and get acquainted with and learn a new area will be very interesting for me.

 

Me at a shoe care event with Italigente at Spiga 3. Picture: Milad Abedi

Me at a shoe care event with Italigente at Spiga 3. Picture: Milad Abedi

 

For the blog, this does’t mean anything really beyond the state today. I will continue with these Italigente Uncovered articles, and the knowledge I gain from “the other side” of working with shoes, I will share with you both in these posts and in other articles here on the blog. I will continue to run Shoegazing on my leisure time, and as I hope you have noticed, I will continue to write about all kinds of brands, including competitors to Italigente, in the manner they deserve, which is often in positive terms. I simply hope that you will continue to have confidence in what I write here.