The shoes were originally designed to be worn for driving, back in the days when motoring was an elegant leisure activity. Today they work perfectly with most casual outfits, bringing to mind an effortless Italian style and laid-back air.
Designed with driving in mind, the rubber studs on the soles of the shoes provide traction whilst those on the back protect the leather as the driver works the clutch, accelerator and brake. The thin soles of the shoes allow a great feel for the pedals.
All Car Shoe loafers are handmade in Italy, with over 70 manufacturing phases and 800 manual operations per pair. 4.85 meters of English made, pitch-treated thread is used for each shoe, with 160 hand stitches in total. The uppers are perforated by hand.
The soft, naturally-tanned calfskin suede is cut by hand and offers good water resistance. Natural tanning takes longer than chemical curing, but is less harmful to the environment and more faithful to tradition. The rubber on the soles hails from the same process as tyre manufacturing, ensuring its durability.
The loafers are lined in leather and have cushioned, removable insoles to ensure the utmost comfort. The decorative laces are cut from the same suede as the body of the shoe, and pass through reinforced eyelets.
Car Shoe was established in 1963 by the automobile enthusiast and cobbler
Mr Gianni Mostile, who was awarded a patent for his innovative leather driving moccasins by the Italian Ministry of Industry and Trade. Quality, innovation and craftsmanship have always been hallmarks of Car Shoe, which has found favour over the years with eminent figures including Mr John F Kennedy and Mr Giovanni Agnelli.
In 2001, Car Shoe was acquired by the Prada group, which set about reviving the brand's iconic 1960s logo, and reissuing some of the original designs, all of which are still produced in Italy to exacting standards. There are over 800 manual operations involved in the production of each pair, and only the best naturally-tanned leathers are used. The cushioned insoles, dimpled rubber soles and soft leathers all ensure that a pair of Car Shoe loafers are just as comfortable and practical as they are enduringly stylish.