Since 1921 Almini designs and produces handmade luxury creations
The Story began in 1915, when Pietro Almini moved from Milan to Vigevano to learn the traditional art of shoemaking.
Thanks to a careful study of the material, of its transformations and nuances, he acquired the skillful craftsmanship and opened its first workshop in 1921 together with his wife Giovanna.
At that time, the production was able to satisfy every single customer with quality, comfort and refinement.
Each item, in fact, was made on the basis of specific needs, using the classic method of the “dozen” pairs arranged on wooden trolleys, some of which still exist and are preserved in the current factory.
In 1946, under the direction of his daughter Fernanda, the workshop began the production of elegant children’s shoes, created with refined leathers and the classic sole.
Two years later Fernanda’s husband, Quirino Ruggero, joined the company to manage the distribution of this product outside the national territory, developing a commercial network in northern Europe which led to the opening, in Luxembourg, of a branded store Almini of children’s shoes.
At the end of the 1970s, Carlo Pietro Ruggero joined his father in the Almini sales office.
In those years, the children’s footwear market was characterized by continuous fluctuations in demand: therefore, they returned to produce men’s shoes and, subsequently, professional soccer shoes.
In the following decade, Carlo became aware of a product widely used in the Gulf countries, the Arab sandal, generally made without particular attention to comfort and quality.
Thus, he had the idea of redesigning this particular sandal with Italian flair, special attention to design and cutting-edge technical features, in order to meet the needs dictated by cultural traditions.
In this sense, anatomical cork wedges were studied, while the opanka processing with hand-stitching was also refined.
This luxury product was initially distributed through single-brand boutiques located in the main cities of the Gulf countries.
Over time, they were transformed into chain stores which count now about 50 points of sales, with customized collections for different brands depending on the target of the end user.
Careful design, meticulous selection of materials and assiduous search for perfection: this is the secret behind the philosophy of a brand that in its history finds the foundations for an innovative strength.
This allowed the company to become the leader in this market.
Maintaining craftsmanship even with high volumes and constantly improving the service for special orders: this is the goal achieved by Almini, always giving the utmost attention to details and customization, with a focus on the training of young craftsmen.
The passion for footwear and modernization gave the push to go further and develop a more international product, free from territorial constraints, but always handcrafted and with an unmistakable Italian style.
The idea was born from the reworking of an ancient process used by the founder Pietro, to make his own personal shoes.
It is a complex, entirely manual method where the upper is stitched backwards directly to the sole and then turned over by hand:
Metodo Almini Reverse
As a glove on your feet.
Each part that makes up the shoe is treated as a living material in continuous evolution and requires skill, sensitivity and experience that only several generations of craftsmen can transmit.
The challenge was the creation of a perfect men’s shoe: several years of study were carried out to refine this ancient procedure and be able to apply it to all our creations.
Each Almini shoe is the fascinating result of a creative path that arises from a culture of beauty in which stylistic trends and structural innovation merge.
The first phase of this path is the aesthetic research through the graphic studio.
Our artist-craftsmen define the sketch in which they already shape the soul of the model they are making, the character they give and enrich it with details that make it even more unique.
In 2016 the first boutique in Via Bagutta, Milan, designed by the star architect Cino Zucchi was inaugurated.
The symbol of the Almini philosophy is the Triple Infinite: the continuous evolution of an object out of time, the generational continuum that the Almini Ruggero family imagines in the future.
The challenge continues with the fourth generation Valentina and Alessandro Ruggero.
After nearly a century, the Almini family, now in its fourth generation, has decided to reintroduce the antique method used by the founder Pietro and make it known to all shoe lovers all around the world.
It is a complex method executed entirely by hand: the upper is turned inside out and stitched directly onto the sole, and then turned back out by hand. Each part of the shoe is treated as living material in continuous evolution. The method requires great skills, sensitivity to materials, and experience which has been handed down through multiple generations of artisans.