Riccardo Banfi Started in 1918
(Lavorazione a Mano, Making to hand)
The purpose of Riccardo Banfi’s work is to carry on the work that their grandfather Pietro which started at the beginning of the last century. Currently in the 5 generation of shoe making.
They make sure their clients wear the finest, handmade and lasting shoes and the pricing is in line with market expectations of this premium quality. Quality is combined with research in order to offer original models which anticipate present fashion trend or to start a new one.
In Parabiago, North of Milan, known as “the city of the shoes”, its history began at the end of the 19th century, when some local artisans decided to specialize in shoe making, giving more importance to the quality of the leather, materials and the finer details. The first cobblers were born and St Crispin was their patron saint.
In 1918 the Banfi family, the dynasty of shoemakers, started. Pietro, the grandfather, a pioneer of Italian shoe business opened a little shop where he made the shoes to order for his first customers. He had a little work bench where he used to fix the upper of the shoe on the shoetree, keeping the nails in his mouth.
Being so talented in the following years his name spread among the upper class and the Italian royal family. Thanks to his creativity and attention to the details, Banfi shortly became the favourite shoe supplier with the Italian aristocracy.
In the mid 30’s his son Riccardo expanded successfully the business gradually transforming it from a small scale artisan operation to a more industrial size business, without giving the typical features of the craftwork up.
In the 60’s, his nephews Massimo and Adriano, the current managers of the company expanded the business abroad benefiting from the popularity of the “made in Italy” goods.
In 1998 Massimo Banfi was nominated president of the Associazione Calzaturieri di Parabiago, a very prestigious position that he kept until 2002.
His son has just graduated from University in Milan in fashion, and is already working in the business.
The factory is run personally by Adriano Banfi, brother of Massimo who follows his father footsteps in a traditional manner. The staff are highly specialized (cutters, hemmers, assemblers) as they come from various experiences, or they grew up professionally within the factory.
For the past four years they have been manufacturing the Chanel and Nicholas Kirkwood. From 2010 they have been asked to manufacture Lanvin and Christian Louboutin shoes. Other labels the family are responsible for include Albano and Fabi.