Riccardo Bestetti was regarded as the most talented shoemaker in Italy but died at a young age due to cancer. His illustration of artful shoes combined with aggressive lasts is amazing and shocking to the industry and as a bespoke shoemaker, his skill is also top notch.
I only have the previledge to own one of his Ready to Wear collection, Foster, a very iconic model I had seen no other brands offer and even copy.
Let us have a look.
A midnight to dark green shoe box without even logo everywhere, and the paper is quite thin which you can see the corner is already broken.
At the bottom area of the side, shoe information is present. RB066 should be the last but I am not sure. Foster is the model name, 5.5 is the size.
Shoe bags are made of fabric like flannel but I cannot tell whether it is wool or not.
The logo is final under the sun or light, which is quite classical and complex, and the brand name is his full name, Riccard Freccis Bestetti.
Pattern and Last
The arch cap toe is so innovative and catches eyes relentlessly. I can be very positive that this design was invented by Riccardo Bestetti and now is copied by Saint Crispin’s. When both present, I still have to admit Foster is better looking as this pattern fits a sharp last more. And the pattern design fitting the last is where Riccardo Bestetti was most admired.
Brogue is long regarded as country element however on this pair, it adds more elegance than anything and each edge of pieces of leather is perforated. The medallion is also quite interesting.
Slightly beveled sole. Nothing too dramatic and the hand finishing is average.
The welt is fudged to help align the stitches, but the funny fact is the stitches do not sit on the fudge. Then what is the point of fudging? It seems that the craftsman was not quite patient nor cares too much.
There was rumor that the workshop did not operate very well as the apprentices did not stay.
The edge of the sole is painted but maybe the tool is not very handy or the time is too long and the finish just took off.
The shoes are claimed to be handwelted which is trustworthy. However, when we look at the waist, you cannot find any stitch. It is possible that the stitches are hidden however this one is glued which is confirmed by the brand.
I can accept some corner cutting as aesthetics is the king, and this waist looks good as well.
I usually choose not to judge leather quality when the shoes are new, however this one looks plastic and the crease is not very promising.
Lasted shoe tree, but I found it is loose and not stretches very tight in the shoe.
The center brogue was ill executed and cut the upper.
The dark bottle green lining and full sock lining are quite unique. Most of the time, full sock lining can cover the dimples of the forefoot which were caused by handwelting.
The sculptural heel cup is Riccardo Bestetti’s signature and the heel looks quite high.
I am always in the conflict whether wearing this pair. On one hand, the last is too pointy and I feel very uncomfortable, on the other hand, I dislike putting shoes on the shelf as it is a waist of resource.
Can I resell this pair for a profit? I highly doubt it. Maybe someday I will make the determination to step forward in it.