Walk This way: Paul Andrew Steps Up For His Debut Salvatore Ferragamo Shoe Collection
‘There are 15,000 pairs of archive designs at the Salvatore Ferragamo museum in Florence,’ enthuses Paul Andrew, appointed the house’s first design director of women’s footwear final September. ‘To be given the keys to that as a shoe designer, is the most precious gift.’ Similarly, the British-born, New York-based mostly designer’s association with the Italian house is the reward that retains on giving.
‘I’ve come throughout some of the most unimaginable sneakers,’ adds Andrew, who based his personal shoe label in 2012. ‘Salvatore Ferragamo was such an innovator and pioneer.’ It was in 1919 that the Italian shoe designer (who had emigrated to Boston in 1914), relocated to Santa Barbara, opening a boot store that catered to the glamorous needs of the Hollywood elite. Eight years later, Ferragamo returned to Italy, establishing his eponymous firm in Florence.
His designs had been architectural, trendy and revolutionary, from the 1938 cork wedge heel, lined in layers of colourful suede and designed for Judy Garland, to 1947’s ‘Invisible Sandal’, with an undulating F-formed wedge heel. Ferragamo additionally centered on consolation, finding out anatomy while within the United States. ‘Before him, a shoe was simply one thing your foot used as a operate to stroll outside,’ Andrew says.
Paul Andrew has updated the bow detail of the ‘Vara’ model utilizing graphic hardware
In his debut assortment for the home, Andrew has taken the tropes and silhouettes ubiquitous to Ferragamo, and up to date them utilizing modern manufacturing process and supplies. The F-shaped wedge has been reimagined in suede and velvet variations – smooth pink velvet heels with elegant ankle straps or ankle boots within the house’s signature black and gold – utilizing an intensive, newly developed moulding process.
‘Ferragamo was using cutting-edge technology during the twenties and thirties, and enhancing it with lovely Italian craftsmanship’ Andrew explains. ‘My concept was to show again to these attentions. The velvet upper of the F-formed wedge is woven in an artisan manufacturing facility in southern Italy. The heel is moulded in plastic and sent to a automotive manufacturing facility and galvanised with a particular metallic coating, which is super light yet durable.’
Working with one of his 4 brothers in Boston, Ferragamo himself spent time in a cowboy boot-making manufacturing facility. This industrial endeavour can also be seen all through Andrew’s assortment. Sporty tech-knit ankle boots, crafted in graphic micro stripes, have been created in a coach manufacturing facility.
Sock-like uppers that kind part of a golden cage sandal design – a reinterpretation of Ferragamo’s ‘Kimo’ fashion (beneath) – had been additionally produced there. The unique Geisha-inspired sandal, launched in 1951, was bought with a collection of interchangeable colourful socks.
A golden cage sandal riffs on Ferragamo’s ‘Kimo’ model
‘The foundations of Ferragamo were also formed on greatest match and consolation,’ Andrew says. ‘The higher is weaved with a technical cotton and nylon yarn. It has wonderful memory, you may put it on a thousand occasions and it will never lose its stretch. It’s one among my favorite footwear in the collection.’
The renowned bow-detail ‘Vara’ shoe, launched in 1978, has also been updated. ‘It was actually necessary for me to take that ahead and introduce it to a new era of shoppers’. Andrew says. ‘I’ve made a number of versions. For the bow itself we’ve used a nylon yarn, which meets the excessive-tech, excessive-craft intention now we have for the model. The heel itself has additionally modified. We’re calling it the “Flower Heel”, based mostly on the new ferragamo belt a design from the thirties. It’s been galvanised in a automotive manufacturing facility, with horizontal striations to resemble grosgrain the new ferragamo belt ribbon.’
Cutting-edge technology aside, Andrew’s inventive intentions have additionally resulted from accidental creativity. Sandals, boots and mules have been crafted in a colourful and multifaceted fabric pulled prematurely from a loom operated by artisans in Naples.
‘I wished to weave a particular textured fabric,’ Andrew says, ‘but it just wasn’t working. Once we opened the loom it pulled out the yarn with this wonderful twined effect. I requested the weavers to proceed doing this and that’s how we made the fabric. The foundations of Ferragamo have been built from unbelievable design.