At the heart of Royal Albartross are the craftsmen and women at our small, family run factories in Italy and Portugal - 'The Little Guys.' Many of these areas have been so hard hit by Covid-19 and that’s really at the core of our decision to keep calm and carry on.
We feel duty-bound to support the rebuilding of the local economy and the lives of all the craftsmen in our factories by continuing to promote luxury quality product out of Europe.
By choosing to purchase from RA you are contributing to part of the solution, because at the end of 2020, it won’t be how well we have done, just that we have weathered this storm. It will be how many of these factories and craftsmen still have a livelihood to support their families and rebuild the local economy. So, we wanted to take a little bit of time to recognise and introduce you all to a few members from our factories that put their heart and soul into their craftmanship that is so clearly reflected in every individual pair of our shoes. Explore the journey of a pair of Royal Albartross Golf Shoes right here.
Say hello to one of our Italian Craftsmen, Giacomo! Here he is hand cutting each shoe upper, better known as clicking because of the sound the sharp knives make on the cookie-cutter-type metal shapes for each panel of the shoe. Clickers are HIGHLY skilled and they directly influence the cost of the shoes, because they can control how much leather is wasted - A clever Clicker will make the most out of every skin, avoiding natural flaws, whilst making sure the shoe uppers for each pair match perfectly in texture and colour.
Each and every part of the shoe-making process is done with quality and precision in mind - here one of our highly skilled Italian craftsmen, Sergio, is lining up the last to ensure that the back heights on both shoes are correct and match perfectly. The comfort of each customer is in his hands, which he takes very seriously. A true Italian master of his craft.
Finishing each shoe well, is key - taking the time to buff the heels, polish the uppers, remove any excess polish before lacing and packing, is what really makes the difference. It's throughout this process that our factory workers are so focused on maintaining the true quality, and care, of Royal Albartross shoes. Like Simone here.
Meet Roberta, a master of her craft - here she stitches the individual upper pieces together to form a more 3-dimensional shape that is the start of every pair of RA golf shoes. She alternates between hand sewing and machine work before pairing them together and sending them to be lasted. Each stitch punctures the leather, so it is imperative Roberta gets it right and believe us, she does!
The final product, presented just before they are polished, laced and boxed, ready to make their journey to all of our customers around the globe. A truly beautiful craft that is filled with passion and purpose every step of the way. Each pair is a testament to the skills that have been passed down several generations of artisan shoes makers in Italy.
Words by: Alex Bartholomew