Bespoke shoe making has become some what of an obsession of mine since starting to learn the craft about 6 months ago. I have become hyper aware of footwear designers, you name it and I have probably heard of it. Of all the types of footwear designers I have come across the most interesting to me have been the bespoke shoemakers. The sad thing however is that they are very rarely commended for their craft unless they become commercial, completely eradicating the very idea of 'bespoke'. If some of you managed to order the books I recommended in my last post you will come to learn that Jimmy Choo started off as a bespoke shoemaker and only became famous for his shoes when partnered with Co Founder Tamara Mellon where the designs were made more commercially viable. HOWEVER lucky for us there are still a few bespoke shoemakers going strong one being Caroline Groves. Her 10 minute clip in a piece of film I watched at the Pleasure and Pain exhibition has completely inspired me. In the era of fast fashion, Caroline Groves comes as a (very much needed) breathe of fresh air.
Her designs are most importantly bespoke, and of course for that reason extremely unique yet bursting with character. Groves has sustained a thriving business through great design and larger than life clients which are reflected through her shoes, that cross the boundaries of Art Fashion and fantasy. Recognised by Vogue and major fashion houses around the world her 20 years of experience have not only put her in good stead but completely set her apart from even todays 'it' designers. Celebrated as one of the best bespoke shoe makers in the world its no wonder that her business continues to grow and inspire.
T - @carolinemgroves