Louis Vuitton chose to create its shoes Manufactures de Souliers in Fiesso d’Artico, a town near Venice that sits on the banks of the River Brenta and has been the ancestral home of shoe-making since the 13th century. Just as it did with its leather-goods atelier in Asnières, France, and its watch Atelier in Chaux-de-Fonds, Switzerland, the House found in Fiesso d’Artico the perfect balance between traditional savoir-faire, excellence in craftsmanship and cutting-edge technology.
More than a simple Manufacture, Fiesso d’Artico includes departments for design, training and logistics, and even an art gallery, all in an exceptional setting.
Here, Louis Vuitton shoes – from the most elegant ladies’ shoes to training shoes, as well as loafers and a made-to-order service for men – are envisaged, designed and created. It is about teamwork based on different talents and a shared passion, all with one ambition: to share with the house’s clients the artisanal savoir-faire that is also an expression of emotions. The presence of design and prototyping in the heart of the Manufacture also allows for a healthy and rich dialogue between designers and artisans, one that offers shoes of unbridled creativity that respond to the highest standards of comfort and quality.
The Manufacture’s artisans – the majority from the surrounding area – are the guardians of a savoir-faire passed down from master to apprentice. Fiesso d’Artico includes a department dedicated to Made-to-Order, which allows gentlemen to create pairs of personalised shoes by selecting the shape, leather and finish of their choice. this possibility, which requires extremely specialised skills, also aims to preserve and pass on traditional knowledge that is in danger of disappearing, such as the entirely handsewn Norwegian stitch or the art of the patina, skills which are also passed on in the workshop.
Traditional does not mean frozen in time, however, and these long-established methods are part of a dynamic vision that aims to reinvent itself constantly and always go one step further. At Fiesso d’Artico, hi-tech equipment coexists with handstitching – technology is used to assist the artisan. Heritage is alive and well, brought up to date by a vision of the future and a passion which is also passed on in the region’s schools. With Fiesso d’Artico, Louis Vuitton has written a manifesto for a dynamic tradition that always has one foot in the future.
Images via Louis Vuitton