Among the oldest of traditional trades, working leather came about in the Middle Ages. Today it is one of the most important industries providing footwear, leather garments and bags, many of them made in the areas around Macerata and Fermo. Here, towards the end of the 1800s, there were dozens of shoemakers. In Montegranaro, for example,
almost the entire local economy was based on it. As time passed, industrial transformation came about, even though the majority of the enterprises remained based on the small, familyrun model which became an integral part of an innovative regional network which is now being studied by economic scholars.
A fascinating journey into the past of ancient artisanal traditions can be enjoyed in the Museo della Calzatura (the Footwear Museum) in Sant’Elpidio a Mare, where the evolution of the Marchigian shoe industry is laid out alongside a selection of vintage machinery, shoes worn by famous people and a faithful reconstruction of a 1940s shoemaker’s workshop. Tolentino is the leather centre, and it is here that talented artisans still work leather in the old way, carefully selecting quality leather from which they craft accessories of great style, as well as elegant, high-end armchairs and sofas.
Text was taken up and elaborated by the pubblication “Made in Marche – 0km flavours and quality shopping”