The Shoe Snob Blog

September 28, 2012

Written by , Posted in News

Scarpe Di Bianco – An MTO Process….

A few years back a company named Scarpe Di Bianco came on to the scene, blowing the socks off of anyone who appreciated nice footwear. I remember the first time that I saw them (online) and thought to myself, ‘man, I would love to have all of these!’ Not only do they have an enormous collection, as far as styles go, but also make shoes in every single color that you could think of. A shoe lover’s heaven! The only problem about them, was trying to figure out where they came from, i.e. how they popped onto the scene out of nowhere with what felt like years of credibility and a solid looking product! That’s hard to do for a new company. While I still can’t really pinpoint their origins, there were always rumors that the founders of Di Bianco were ex-Sutor Mantellassi gents who decided to do there own thing. Whether this is true or not remains to be known….at least to me.

Little did I know, until I started chatting to the owner/founder Mr. William White, not only aside from all of the options that they currently offer, that you could create your own MTO pair. That blew my mind as they literally have one of the most expansive collections accessible. Not only are there about 1000 models to choose from (exaggerating of course 🙂 but there are also 3 or 4 different lasts, 6 different sole choices, 4 types of shoe construction and 55 different color options to choose from. Remember math class when you had to figure out how many possibilities you could create with 3 numbers? I can’t remember the formula that you used to figure it out quickly, but thinking about the MTO process with SB reminds me of that! Imagine the possibilities that you could create! So I started thinking about what I would get….

I came to decide that I wanted something that I would never really find readily available nor even something outside of bespoke, here in England. And that brought me to the model at the top, the loafer with the lovely, long fringe. Now as I have shoes in almost every color, I decided that I wanted something really special……and what’s harder to find then a nice gray. That being, I decided that I wanted that fringe loafer (model SB780) in the smoke grey with the toe/heel burnishing in last 3376 and goodyear welted. The only problem was making sure that it fit, as getting a loafer is sometimes hard to do since I have such a narrow, low-volume foot. But as their sizing in the 3376 ranges from US6-US17 in widths C, D, E, & EEE, there really wasn’t much to worry about, as a nice C width will do me just fine! Needless to say, as I have always been mega curious about this brand, I am excited to see how it all comes out, not because I worry in any way, but more so just to get them on my feet and see how many outfits I can create!!

Will keep you updated!! Have a great weekend!

-Justin, “The Shoe Snob”

  • Alex B

    What do they cost, and how do you order?! Two simple questions not clear from the website…

    • These are the two issues I have been wondering about Alex.
      They have an amazing range. One of my fave’s are the SB818 double monks straps Costagna.
      A-MAZING!!
      No idea how much they are likely to be though.

  • Alex B & Owen B – can’t say that I know about RTW, I think around +$700 (£425), but MTO starts at $1095 (£675) and then goes up from there depending on skin/construction….
    As far as getting one…I suppose you contact their email at info@scarpedibianco.com….

    -Justin

  • Ike

    The RTW is priced at $950+ here in the US. It is only available in the Blake construction with limited lasts (I think sufficient), and colors. They all pre-define for a particular season.
    BTW, they are not only beautiful, but also very well constructed, and comfortable.

  • Alex B

    I guess (Ike) that’s with a retailer’s margin? I did find that one some of their retailers’ sites.

    But even if it’s only $700 direct from SdB (Justin), that’s more for RTW and about the same for MTO, as George Cleverly or Gaziano and Girling, if the difference in VAT is taken into account. Another comparison: their RTW only is more expensive than Carmina’s MTO, or Vass’s bespoke.

    I’m not saying they’re not worth it – they look amazing – but worth considering the price level at which they are competing.

  • Ike – Thanks for the clarification.. that actually makes more sense considering the MTO price…

    Alex B – they must be what Ike says, mine was just a guestimate……as far as all of the comparisons that you are listing, I don’t think that these are the competitors that they think about….they are directly competing with the likes of Santoni, Bontoni, Sutor Mantellassi and the other Italian makers that sell at this price point….Carmina and Vass sell that low because they own their factories, and therefore don’t have a middle man mark up….

    -Justin