The Journey And Story Behind UNO, Patina Loafers

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UNO marks our very first ready to wear (RTW) PATINE collection.

We have officially put our Patine - UNO, Penny Loafers into production! The estimated time would be about 4 to 6 weeks.

True patina shoes can only be done on higher grade of calf crust leather.

And high craftsmanship is needed to ensure the dye is and loafers are properly treated.

It is an inconvenient and more costly way to make shoes.

However, the result is a beautiful and unique artisan loafer with vibrant shades of colors.

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Mr nha, The Craftsman Behind UNO

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I’ve known Mr Nha for more than a year already.

We’ve worked together to create unique custom patina shoes previously.

Mr Nha’s Story

He has been crafting beautiful men shoes for more than 20 years.

He started his apprenticeship and shoe making craft at a distinguished shoe making factory in Vietnam.

After which, he worked in Singapore as a bespoke shoe maker for a renowned brand.

Having been bitten by the entrepreneur bug, he decided to return to Vietnam to start a shoe making workshop of his own to craft beautiful men leather shoes.

On top of that, he mentioned he could take care of his aging mother who lives in Vietnam.

His specialty is in Patina, the art of hand painting.

Mr Nha has been operating his own shoe making workshop for more than 5 years already!

And according to him, he has never been more fulfilled!

Crafting leather shoes and running his own business.

A Bold Claim

Chúng tôi làm những đôi giày nam patina tốt nhất Đông Nam Á”, he claimed when we first met at a Vietnamese coffee shop.

This translate to “I make the best patina shoes in South East Asia”.

Bold claim. Naturally, i was skeptical.

But after seeing his work, he certainly backed it up.

The story behind uno, patina penny loafer

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Having been inspired by brands like Berluti, Andres Sendra and JMLEGAZEL (known for creating unique artisan leather shoes),

I’ve always wanted to create a similar pair of hand patina dress shoe but… with a touch of our Singaporean local “pragmatism”

While the patina shoes are strikingly beautiful,

you might not get much chance to wear them out or it might be a little too loud for some of us. (like bright pink, purple or even rainbow colors)

Instead, it would be infused with subtle nuances of color graduation and various patina effects, like the brush stroke.

The purpose of which is not to stand out but for people to notice the subtle nuances in color.

When the idea for such a Patina inspired men dress shoe came to me, the first person i thought of was Mr Nha.

The Madness After The Idea

Coming up with the idea was the easy part.

Actually creating a beautiful patina penny loafer prove to be a lot more challenging.

The Shoe Last

First came the shoe last…what shape should the loafers be in?

We decided on a modern contemporary chisel shape.

Since the Italians are renowned for Patina, it only makes sense that we use a more Italian inspired shoe last.

The Upper Leather

Next came the upper leather.

It was hands down Italian calf crust leather.

The more refined pores of the skin allows better penetration of the dyes, and of course, allows Mr Tiep to showcase more of his Patina skills.

Furthermore, it was a full white skin which gives more room for Patina creativity, compared to a more nude colored crust leather.

Beautiful white canvas to paint on!

Beautiful white canvas to paint on!


The Outsole

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Rubber was a definite NO GO for such Patina shoes.

I’m not disputing the advantages of rubber sole but when it comes to Patina dress shoes…

Only a leather sole is able to give the sleek and elegant profile and silhouette.

And not just any regular leather sole…it has to be meticulously closed to cover the stitching to create a clean elegant outsole,

absent of the standard stitching you see on most leather sole shoes.

Furthermore, the waist of the outsole has to be painstakingly carved in by Mr Tiep to create a slim profile.

What for, you ask? Because it looks that much better.

What other reasons do you need for crafting leather shoes?


Why Penny Loafers?

Loafers are versatile.

They allow you to dress up for a professional setting

And dress down for a more casual evening.

I strongly believe a pair of smart loafers is needed in every man’s shoe collection.

Furthermore, most office are going flexible dress code and there is less need to wear a Black Captoe oxford or wholecut daily.

So thus begins our flagship PATINE collection.

READ ALSO: 4 Ways To Style Your UNO Patina Penny Loafers


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