Barrett was first established in Parma in 1917 as the result of a partnership between a tannery owner from the East End of London called John Richardson Barrett and a long-standing shoe store in the region of Emilia called "Zanlari e Tanzi". During one of his trips to Italy at the start of the century, Mr Barrett fell in love with the extraordinary comfort and elegance of the shoes crafted in a small cordwainer's shop from Parma. He started off as a loyal customer and ended up as its main supplier of tanned English calfskin. From that moment on, all the items crafted from his premium leather would bear his name.
That was the start of Barrett's story, a tale steeped in tradition, fine craftsmanship and close links to the area of Emilia. It is a 100-year tale spun by passionate minds, strong spirits and fierce determination which has always invested in the product itself, Barrett's abiding strength.