Thursday, August 21, 2008

Berluti is in the Eye of the Beholder.

The Berluti story is a dynastic epic which involves mastery of cabinet making, bohemian sidetracking, turn of the century Parisian chicanery, obsession, two sons, a female cousin, a dose of theatre camp, the Duke of Windsor, Elizabeth Arden and little Edith Piaf.Alessandro made the first lace up court shoe from a single piece of leather in 1895. Then Torello his son really got things moving in 1928. His son Talbinio, an architect by trade and good looking chap, brought the elegance from 1960 to 1980, while pops obsessively toiled away. Since 1970, Cousin Olga has perfected the patina process that gives Berluti shoes their distinct translucent depth. She has collaboratcd with the likes of Warhol, Truffaut and Yves Saint-Laurent. There is even a semi Masonic gathering once a year in her honour called the Swann Club, where buffing shoes in Champagne is said to be "not unusual".

Love them or hate them, you can’t ignore a pair of Berluti’s in the room.

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