My grandfather and his brother made shoes in Columbus, Ohio in a small store off High Street. They were taught by their father in Italy, and their father’s father taught him, and so on. However, sometime in the 30's or 40's he left the shoe business as he was not able to support his family in the trade. And so the multi-generational family business died.
Fast forward to my life. I, Phillip Nappi, was born in the late sixties to incredible parents. I was surrounded by amazing friends and a loving family and for that I am eternally grateful.
Tragedy struck, as it often does, and my father passed away due to heart issues. Less than two years later my mother passed away due to an aneurysm. But this story is not about loss, it is about triumph. You see, you can lose something concrete but still hold onto the abstract. And in that way you win. You can miss someone but always remember what they taught you. Or what trait they instilled in you. This keeps them alive through you and your actions.
When my wife and I decided to launch this business, we did so with seven styles of shoes (all men's at the time). But they were more than shoes - they were the abstract turned concrete again. They were the traits and principles instilled by our loved ones, offered in a humble, yet exquisitely made shoe. These are the principles we aim to embody today, tomorrow, and always.
So today, in honor of Peter Nappi's birthday (April 30th), we'd like to share with you these principles and the people who instilled them in us.
Devotion to Family inspired by Pietro Lunardi - our friend who would, as Peter did, give up everything, including his passion for boots, in order to provide best for his family.
Responsibility and loyalty named after my godfather Romeo. He recognized responsibilities go beyond mere duties. Always dependable, loyal and faithful.
Being a Just Business Man inspired by Stephen McRedmond. Our friend who opened his home to us and welcomed us into what we now call our Studio. He was a true philanthropist and always chose right over wrong.
Faithfulness and Belief named after St. Bartolomeo, the patron saint of leather workers and shoemakers. Because without faith, there is no hope.
Wisdom and Patience instilled in us by Julius, my father, whose perpetual smile and shining eyes seemed to embrace you, no matter what curious circumstance a young boy may find himself in.
Relentless determination instilled in us by the stories about the people of the very poor Basilicata region of Italy—the region Peter Nappi called home. Although they labored in the rocky fields of southern Italy, they continued to find joy and inspiration in all the hidden cracks.
Loving, Caring and Sharing instilled in us by a friend whose support and kindness encouraged us, along with countless others, to follow our dream.
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