Using age-old Portuguese craftsmanship, Carlos Santos Shoes creates timeless handmade footwear of the highest quality
Carlos Santos began his long journey to the top of the shoe industry when he was just 14, working for a family business in Portugal and learning the trade by escaping the office to visit the factory floor to see how shoes were actually made. Portugal was then under the oldest dictatorship in Europe, but but Carlos immediately saw fashion as a way to make life more beautiful, less difficult and better. In time, he came to form Carlos Santos Shoes, which has become one of the world’s most well-known brands of male luxury footwear.
“We in Carlos Santos Shoes believe luxury to be craftsmanship, research, experimentation, elegance, and exclusiveness,” says Armando Santos, Carlos’s son, who works alongside his father and sister Ana in the family company. “When you purchase a pair of luxury shoes for men by Carlos Santos Shoes you are not just buying a product, you are becoming a part of its culture and part of the craftsmanship that the Portuguese artisans have been developing for centuries.”
Each pair of Carlos Santos Shoes will go through a process that may require more than 200 highly skilled unique handcrafted operations. Material are carefully chosen, and the shoes designed and created by a team of experts who are proud to share their values with the customer. Within every pair of Carlo Santos Shoes is the knowledge and expertise that Carlos Santos acquired as he progressed through the industry towards running his own company. During this time, he would attend fashion shows to buy shoes, not for him to wear but so they could be slowly dismantle and he could study and understand how they had been made. Luxury, he realized, shouldn’t mean something that was superfluous but something that was built with enough skill, style and passion to last almost forever.
Carlos Santos Shoes is now a byword for quality craftsmanship and sophistication. The Carlos Santos Collection is inspired by the colours of each season, offering consumers a high degree of personality without compromising on the elegance required for a luxury pair of handcrafted shoes. “Much has changed in more than four decades, but the essential remains,” says Armando. “The passion for shoes, devotion to work and ambition to create unique shoes for customers to wear.”