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Manolo Blahnik may have had a busy month designing for the various fashion weeks, but he still has plenty of ideas for the future. The legendary shoe designer has indicated that he is open to collaborating with a high-street retailer to create a cheaper range of footwear, but stresses that â€œIt would have to be a challenge, I don’t just want to do it for commerce or for business…if it was something exciting and I could really collaborate with someone marvellous then yes, of courseâ€.
An Anglophile at Heart
Blahnik is also a big fan of Britain. After designing the heels for Victoria Beckham’s NY fashion week collection, he praised her work ethic and commented that â€œIt’s good that she’s in England now of course. Everybody should move to England!â€ Indeed, Bath has been the Spanish-born designer’s home for many years now.
Manolo Blahnik also collaborated with the British Fashion Council, creating all the scenery for the London Fashion Week â€“ in one example, he turned Somerset house into a beautiful country garden. In another, he created stunning designer windows for the Mayfair Hotel. The collection was actually inspired by the English countryside, on a train trip from Bath to London. He dedicated his work to a close friend, stylist Anna Piaggi, who recently passed away.
Speaking about the decline of English textile factories, Blahnik mentioned that â€œAll our designers should be using English things and English materials, I think it’s so important…â€ and observed that it is the combination of luxury established brands and upcoming young designers that have been attracting international interest. â€œI’ve seen people around recently, and sometimes I have no idea who they even are, but they are doing incredible thingsâ€.
Dressed for Success
The designer’s most recent collaboration is with Madeline Weinrib, known for her handmade home products and work with weavers in Uzbekistan. Blahnik planned to utilise Weinrib’s fabrics and create four different styles: pump, wedge, sandal and smoking shoe. Weinrib certainly seemed satisfied with the end results, stating that â€œThey beautifully translated my fabrics into shoes that feel incredibly fresh and newâ€.
Blahnik’s Outstanding Achievement Award, which he received from the British Fashion Council in November 2012, epitomises his trail of success and status within the fashion world. In the announcement preceding the award, presenters described how â€œHe has a worldwide cult following and this is true testament to his enduring talent and successâ€.
It can safely be said that Manolo Blahnik’s will not be going out of fashion anytime soon.
Grace Matthews is a London-based fashion blogger who loves cashmere womens sweaters and silk scarves.