In just four years, Aquazzura’s become the footwear brand to be seen in. Founder Edgardo Osorio tells Isabel Ong why the likes of Jennifer Lawrence and Giovanna Battaglia swear by his shoes.
YOU GET ITALIAN FLAIR WITH AMERICAN EASE
“I was born in Cartagena, Colombia, grew up in Miami and London, and have been living for the past nine years in Florence, Italy. Aquazzura is a mix of all these influences. I like my shoes to be easy, timeless, sexy and modern all at once. As a Latin man, I like to make a woman beautiful, but never want her to feel uncomfortable. This is reflected in my S/S ’15 collection, which I describe as ‘Loulou de la Falaise meets Pharrell Williams’. There’s a gladiator sandal for example, which is laid-back and cool in style, but done in pop art colours.”
YOU’LL LOOK TASTEFULLY SEXY
“My idea of sexiness reflects a kind of Italian sophistication that’s never overdone – it’s about small, luxurious details that make all the difference. To me, a sexy pair of shoes should make a woman’s legs look longer and give her the perfect silhouette. For example, my best-selling Sexy Thing booties – they have been around for three years – are sexy with their cut-outs and ankle ties. Even my flats are sexy because I incorporate laces and strappy details on ballerinas that highlight the ankle and arch of the foot. The cut of my shoes is very sensual because it’ll always elongate your legs.”
YOU CAN WALK ALL DAY IN THEM
“I design for the modern woman who has a hectic lifestyle – she travels, has a taste for beautiful things and wants to enjoy life, so comfort is very important. I want women to be able to wear my shoes all day and feel great, as opposed to changing them several times because they can’t walk in them. (To create such shoes) I hired a technician who’s been in the business for over 40 years. Together, we developed a last that distributes the weight of the body evenly, and inserted extra padding into the soles using memory foam so that they feel softer when you’re walking. I also make it a point to interact with my customers daily on Instagram (@aquazzura) to get feedback and a better understanding of their lifestyles.”
THE WORKMANSHIP IS COUTURE STANDARD…
“My S/S ’15 collection is mostly made up of sandals and open-toe booties. Among them, the Queen sandal is my favourite – with its snakeskin ankle cuff and embellishments of mirrored bits and silk ribbon all applied by hand. One pair takes 30 hours to complete. It’s the most spectacular shoe I’ve created. There are also several booties in cashmere suede, which means they feel plush and fit as snugly as gloves, as well as designs that have been completely woven by hand by artisans in Florence.”
…BUT THE PRICES AREN’T
“Our prices ($850-$980 at On Pedder) are in line with those of other luxury labels, but we have more directional styles at mid-range prices than they do. For a similar price, what you would usually get at other brands are more basic designs. (I’ve done this) because I want younger women to be able to wear my shoes and own multiple pairs.”
An adapted version first appeared in Female‘s May issue, out on newsstands now.