horsebit loafer

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In celebration of the legendary horsebit loafer’s sixtieth anniversary, Gucci presents the 1953 collection for men and women. Creative Director Frida Giannini envisions a bold combination of colors and materials and a new shape bearing the hardware that has inspired a legacy.

It was 1953 when the double ring and bar motif from the equestrian world debuted on the men’s loafer. Within a few short years, these shoes graced the feet of Hollywood’s leading men including Clark Gable, John Wayne and Fred Astair, and in 1985 the horsebit loafer became part of the permanent collection at the Metropolitan Museum of Art - propelling this style to become the most iconic Gucci shoe ever made.
On the right: John Wayne, Gucci Rome store, 1960s.
The new loafer boasts a tubular construction that requires exceptional skill in its crafting. Only select shoemakers possess the expertise for this highly specialized workmanship: in this construction the insole is absent, so that the shoe is light, pliable and comfortable. For decades Gucci’s artisans have employed this tradition and passed it down across generations.

The 1953 loafer is available in a wide selection of shades and materials: from patent leather and suede, exotic crocodile and python, and canvas printed with the House’s Flora pattern.

On the right: Lawrence Harvey, Gucci store in Rome, late 1960s.
While hardware features either antique brass or nickel, one particular style uses studs in an all-over decoration on the upper side, on the trim and the back. Inside each shoe, a special label with the “Gucci 1953 Made in Italy” script recalls the introduction of this design into the House’s vocabulary sixty years ago. Today this historic loafer is still rooted in the same ideology of its original: a long-lasting classic to wear and love forever.

Available from November 2012 at select Gucci boutiques worldwide and on

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