Sole Mate

Monday 21 February 2011

People

Photography by Marcus Dawes
Interview by Brooke Rutherford

LFW The Daily proudly presents a back-of-the-Mercedes interview with footwear designer Georgina Goodman.

BR: What was your starting point for A/W 11?

GG: I looked at everything I really loved that was essential in my wardrobe. I thought about what my customers ask for and worked on my version of these classics. I think people are very careful about what they’re spending their money on, about what they’re wearing, about everything at the moment. As a consumer I’m looking for things that are special, that have longevity, which enhance your personality. It’s about paring down and investing in things you can wear for a long time.

BR: Were there any specific references that influence latest collection?

GG: Sexy Sloane meets post-punk. It’s not power dressing, its empowered dressing. I don’t work in themes. I work in moods and feelings.

BR: Is there a particular shoe shape that feels right, for right now?

GG: I like single-soles and platforms. Feeling more in touch with the ground. They feel good to wear because you can’t feel the gravel underneath your feet. For pre-collection we’ve sold a lot of pointed toes and spiked heels, so it’s going back to that silhouette. Personally? I like a short point.

BR: How many pairs of shoes do you have in your weekly rotation?

GG: On average 14 pairs a season. Some pairs I wear once or twice then put them in a sample sale.

BR: Do you have one pair that you’ve kept season after season?

GG: No. I literally wear my shoes out. I think that’s what they’re for: to be worn. I definitely have phases though. There are so many things in the day to remember that it’s quite nice to have a uniform. When I go out at night I like to dress up and change my vibe. That’s an advantage of being a woman: we can change ourselves radically by what we wear.

BR: When you were a child did you ever wear your mother’s heels?

GG: Oh yes! My three sisters and I would play shoe shop. We’d set up our mother’s shoes and one of us would be the shop keeper. Buying shoes was always quite an exciting event. Our mother would take us all shoe shopping and we would line up in a row and each be measured as she insisted our shoes fit properly.

BR: Do you believe that this inspired you to design footwear?

GG: Everything you do is influenced by everything you’ve ever done. I think designing shoes is about containing your creativity into a small structure. That idea excites me. I used to make everything by hand when I first started. Now, I get excited by going to factories and managing the production side of it.

BR: I have to ask, which would you prefer: Cinderella’s Glass Slippers or Dorothy’s Ruby Slippers?

GG: Ruby slippers.

BR: What’s the relationship between a woman and her shoes?

GG: It’s such an intimate relationship. There are so many stories and fairy tales around shoes. Each country has its own version of Cinderella and her glass slipper. Women get very drawn in, and use the word love quite evocatively when they describe a pair of shoes. I don’t know if it’s really love or just lust, but the word comes up. I really feel that women access the feeling of love through their shoes. They never say “I love trousers”, or “I love mobile phones.” It’s not really the same emotion. The body language is so strong in response to footwear that if it’s not love, it’s something very similar.

BR: What’s the cheekiest thing you’ve ever done in the back of a car?

GG: Hmm good question. Changed my tights or maybe shaved my legs?

Mercedes-Benz, whose fashionable fleet of cars ensure London Fashion Weekers get around in style, is celebrating its LFW affiliation with the launch of Voices of Fashion, a daily blog with exclusive LFW updates and interviews with the designers who are the voices who define fashion. See voicesoffashion.co.uk

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