Davide from Monza loves cars, new or old. It’s nice if they’re fast ones, too. Cars require keys, keys come with a fob (or portachiavi in Italian), and Davide was finding his decidedly underwhelming. So he made his own. In the finest leather, it goes without saying, and with a classical design. What started off as a hobby has – with a little help from a German friend – grown into a business serving customers around the world. We ordered a BMW GROUP CLASSIC fob from Davide bearing the legend “Goes like schnell”, in a nod to a legendary ad slogan for the BMW 02.
Davide inscribed La chiave va a sinistra on the first key fob he made himself. Translated literally, it means “the key is on the left”. Porsche drivers will know what that’s all about. Davide now sells his key fobs to customers around the globe, thanks in part to input from Germany. But it was never meant to be that way; as a financial auditor, he frankly already had enough on his plate. But money is not what this is about. Instead, Davide’s driving force is something that runs much deeper (and also sounds pretty cool when you say it): passione.
Davide is a native of Monza. Say that word and most of us think immediately of the legendary race track. Davide is no different and was born with the proverbial petrol in his veins, at 3 years old already sitting behind the wheel of his dad’s BMW 3er (E21). A special passion for cars runs like a thread through Monza and its people, so it’s not surprising the town has a suitably vibrant motoring scene. If you want to see the latest models paraded out in front of you, just find a spot outside a café on a local high street and let the show begin.
As we mentioned, Davide has a demanding work life as a successful accountant. So to wind down after-hours he takes his BMW 330d Touring (E91) for a spin. Or he heads out in one of the proper vintage machines in his garage – the 1957 MGA Spider or Porsche 356 Coupé.
An idea, a German and the good ‘ol internet.
One day, Davide looked down at his car keys and was struck by how mundane the fob that went with them suddenly looked. It wasn’t making any kind of statement, just “I’m plastic, live with it”. Two options: buy a new one or… make one himself. The latter quickly gained traction, not least because he wanted LA CHIAVE VA A SINISTRA inscribed on it in tribute to the left-of-the-wheel ignition on his Porsche. And with that, ahem, spark of inspiration, Davide was up and running. He read up on how to treat and inscribe leather, and bought in the necessary tools and materials. The fob was to be clean and functional, and his initial efforts were pretty good. Good enough, in fact, to treat the Instagram community to the results.
A few weeks into his new cottage enterprise, he had sold four key fobs. So nothing spectacular yet, but baby steps and all that. It was then that Laura from Germany got in touch and ordered a fob with LA DOLCE VITA written on it. Product delivered, she couldn’t get enough of her new accessory – and promptly shared it on Instagram. With Laura’s many followers feasting their eyes on Davide’s work, K&YFOB soared. After Germany, also USA, Australia, the UK, France, Italy – all were jumping on the Italian account’s bespoke handmade key fob bandwagon. It takes him around an hour to make each one-off specimen, the genuine craftsmanship at play harking back to a bygone, analogue age. In our eyes, that only adds to the appeal.
Davide has greatly enjoyed his many cordial exchanges with customers, every customisation saying something about its owner. For example, Le Mans legend Tom Kristensen received a fob bearing the message 1 AMP OF ADRENALINE. And our order was along similar lines, only we got to watch Davide create it. What did we plump for? The headline from a 1960s ad campaign for the BMW 02. And we reckon it looks very fetching on a key fob, too: GOES LIKE SCHNELL.