The Koio Capri is a go to for guys interested in minimal leather
It’s no secret that we’re big fans of minimal leather
I’ve compared several pairs of minimal leather
Before we go any further into this review, I want to point out that while these shoes were a gift, Koio is not sponsoring me, and they aren’t paying for this review.
Koio: The Brand
Before we go over the sneaker, let’s take a second to talk about the company. Koio manufacturers all of their
Each pair of shoes is hand-finished, so the brand prides itself on the craftspeople it employs, as well as how it treats them. Values like “competitive wages, fair working hours, and a community-oriented working environment” matter, according to the Koio website.
Does all that pinch the profit margin a bit? Sure. But it also ensures that you’re getting a quality sneaker made with attention to detail.
Koio Capri Review
Now let’s get to the review…
The Koio Capri is a streamlined, minimal leather sneaker. It has a luxurious feel and a very pleasing silhouette. It’s a slim, low-profile sneaker with a clean design. These
The Capri’s upper features full-grain chrome-tanned leather sourced from the Marche region in Italy. It also features Margom outsoles, which are some of the best quality outsoles you can put on a sneaker.
Not only are these shoes the product of two top-quality materials, but Koio actually stitches the soles to the leather like you might see in a boot or dress shoe — a massive improvement over
As far as the small details that matter so much with minimal
It also features a suede heel counter to prevent the shoe from slipping off the back of your foot, as well as a bit of subtle padding around the collar. The tongue is pretty thin, and the lace loop helps keep it in place.
The Capri’s branding is pretty low-key. It has an embossed Koio logo on the tongue and an embossed wordmark on the heel. There isn’t any contrasting coloring to make either of these stand out, so they create a really clean, sleek look.
The Comfort and Fit
Style is great, but if a pair of shoes isn’t comfortable or doesn’t fit well, you’re not going to wear them.
I’m happy to say that I didn’t experience any squeaking with the Capris. Right out of the box, the leather felt soft and luxurious, and there wasn’t much of a break-in period to deal with. I didn’t experience any blisters, and I think that’s mostly due to the plush leather lining around the collar and on the tongue.
Achieving the perfect fit did require a bit of a workaround, though. I usually wear a size 7 in dress shoes and
The issue is that men’s sizing only goes down to 7. Luckily, the Capri is a unisex shoe. I went over to the women’s side of the site and purchased a size 8.
Guys, it’s seriously the same shoe, so don’t get worked up over which section of the website you got it from.
Let’s talk about the price. Depending on sales and timing, the Capri costs between $190 and $240. Yes, that’s a lot of money for a sneaker, but it pales in comparison to other minimal leather
If you can find the Capri on sale, you can buy two pairs for what you’d spend on one pair from Common Projects.
Pros and Cons
I’ll explain what I like about the Capri and what I’d improve upon if I could.
I really like the low profile, slim look of the Capri. Its dramatic taper fits well without looking clunky or chunky like other minimal leather
The Capri just feels like a high-quality, luxurious product. The soft leather, suede lining, and stitched Margom soles give it a premium look and feel.
If you take care of the Capri, it’s going to age well. Not only will the full-grain leather patina nicely, but its simple, clean aesthetic isn’t going to fall out of style anytime soon.
The sizing is somewhat of an issue. The Capri runs large, and I couldn’t find a size in the men’s section that would fit. It’s not a big deal for me, but some guys won’t purchase a shoe from the women’s section — even though it’s the same shoe.
The big issue I have with the Capri has to do with the leather. I haven’t mentioned it yet because it needs some focus and explanation.
Koio makes the Capri with “Vitello calf leather,” which is proudly listed all over the site. The thing is, it’s not calf leather.
My friend Nick from Stridewise dug into this and found that the leather used is actually from mature cows — a byproduct of the meat industry. They call it “calf leather” because it’s soft and has a fine grain, which are characteristics of that leather.
I even asked a rep about the leather, which they confirmed is from calves. To the rep’s credit, they did admit they were wrong when I showed them Nick’s review.
Personally, I don’t care which leather it’s made of, but they should be a little less misleading about it. In fact, I’d argue that some people would prefer their
Other than my awkward sizing situation and the calfskin leather debacle, I don’t have any other complaints.
As far as minimal leather
As far as fit, comfort, design, and quality, there’s really no compromise. Even if you have the budget to pay for a pair of Common Projects Achilles, you might want to consider checking out the Koio Capri first.