Barneys New York celebrated the Fall 2015 collection of Italian shoe designer Gianvito Rossi with a luncheon and in-store meet-and-greet on August 25th. San Francisco was the first stop on Rossi’s West Coast tour, which also included Barneys in Beverly Hills. His beautifully crafted creations have been worn by countless celebrity women, including Mariah Carey, Kim Kardashian and Jennifer Lopez, to name a few. Before he mingled with San Francisco fashionistas and shoe lovers, we caught a moment with Rossi as he shoed off his newest collection.
Can you walk us through your design process?
A collection is an important evolution. You have something that is related to the trends and the new things happening, but the process is very much about the evolution of the collection itself. At the starting point, I take care of the elements of a collection that I really like – the femininity and the elegance of a shoe. Those are key elements that I always start as the base of my design process. I always respect those elements in a shoe. Then there’s the woman, who is the most important part of the shoe that you design.
Since you have stand-alone boutiques in big fashion cities like Milan and New York, who is your your target customer?
I think she’s the same in every city. Women like to be not just one exquisite way to look; they like to change their look with their mood. It’s very difficult to say who my customer is, but absolutely, she is a strong-minded woman. An accessory or a shoe is a part of herself. She wants to play a little bit because she wants to feel the pleasure in something special that is made for her.
Do you follow trends, and if so, are there any trends that you love, and any that you do not?
Talking about trends, the shape I like the most is the elegance of the stiletto. I also like very much the ’70s soft trends, and either high or low, because they match the relaxed attitude. I can combine the elegance of the stiletto in a different moment in a different mood.
What were some of your most important design elements for the Fall 2015 collection?
You have this combination of the elegance and the lightness of the stiletto. At the same time, we have these booties and boots with the lower heel, which I think are super nice. We also have some Mary Janes, which I think are very important. I always like the idea of the lace-up sandals and shoes, which I think are very nice and very important, these laces instead of the heavy buckles. They give some femininity to the shoe.
Are there any celebrities whom you’d love to slip on a Gianvito Rossi shoe?
Honestly (laughing), I would say that most of them have worn my shoes.