The Art of Handmade Patina

Step into Style with "The Art of Handmade Patina"

Step into Style with "The Art of Handmade Patina"

The Art of Handmade Patina

You might have seen the word “patina” before, or maybe you have come across some amazing pictures on our social media.

The technique used to achieve this artwork is known as ‘Anticatura’, which is the Italian word for antique finishing. It is a specialty of French maestro shoemakers.

patina picture.GIF

Patina is an art crafted and designed for shoes by Olga Berluti, member of the famous French brand Berluti which took the world by storm in the 80’s. Hand coloring of shoes was then a fairly new thing in the world of luxury shoes and leather products.

An Antique Finishing Technique for Leathers

The patina art craft method is a hand dyeing procedure of leather, which creates a completely unique patina with an aged effect. The procedure begins with unfinished crust leather, which has been tanned and handled, but not dyed yet.

The artist applies the dyes manually to the uncut hide and the fully assembled shoe, with the use of white cloths, brushes and sometimes sponges, to create a unique look on each and every pair of shoes. With attentive care and superior savoir-faire, a dedicated craftsman perfects the personality of each pair of shoes, helping forge their special “soul”.

The Patina Artist, a Very Skilled Job

The Patina art craft is still considered to be very young. There are many patina techniques still to be discovered. Very few artists lead this new art, and we are proud to work with the best patina artist in the world.

Discovering new coloring techniques and using secret recipes and materiales makes the patina artist job a very skilled and unique one. A good patina artist is able to reproduce a color precisely on demand, and uses it effectively on shoes as also on belts, bags or any other luxury leather goods.



The patina artist initially tries to impart a look on the shoes that make them appear older an aged. Colors are faded to create a nice old world charm to the shoe, which is attractive to the eye and comfortable to the fit. What can be more seducing than leading an old world charm to a modern day marvel?!

The new shoes bought and manufactured in a modern day set up are jaded and impersonal. This art craft and the colorist’s work on it cater to personalization of the product. These art pieces formed will probably be looked upon as collection pieces 40 years down the road!


Alexander Noel: Handmade Patina Shoes

Alexander Noel offers Handmade Patina finishing in most of our shoes and accessories (more styles coming soon!).

Three different handmade patina finishings are available to design and create through the Alex Noel Design tool: Regular, Marble and Papiro. The image below shows an example of Regular, Marble and Papiro patina finishings and how they look.


Additionally we have the Patina Intensity Selector feature on our Tool. You can choose the “intensity” of the patina, that is, the amount of shadow or aging effect applied.

Two intensity levels are available: the Standard Patina Intensity and the new Dark Patina Intensity, with darker shadows and dimmer tones. Learn more about the patina intensity.

Alexander Noel