Elizabeth Dunn is now based in Brooklyn New York
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This blog is a collection of my work and inspiration when living in LONDON 2011 - 2014

Wednesday, 6 July 2011

Q + A - Inken Bornholdt asking Lizzy Dunn

When did you discover your love for shoe design and start making your own?

I have always been really creative growing up and once I discovered the design business I knew this is what I was going to do. I started out in Womenswear and then perfectly fell into Footwear and have been doing it ever since. I did a BA Honours in Footwear at Cordwainers College, at London College of Fashion. Where I received a thorough technical knowledge in footwear design and production.

Each pair of your collection is bespoke and entirely handmade. If you had the opportunity would you consider getting into mass production to capture larger markets?

Yes defiantly, this is something I would love to do. When designing my label I always have in mind mass production of each collection. Larger production is something that needs accurate planning sourcing and of course huge funding. I can not wait for the day when my shoes are more widely available.

Is there a pair of shoes you have made that has a special emotional attachment to you?

I would have to say the ‘flower’ shoes from my A/W 10 Collection, as this pair was my first piece that really captures what type of designer I am. Encompassing classic influences but still staying true to the conceptual organic silhouettes I transform my shoes into. This pair can be worn in 3 ways depending on what occasion. They are so striking and textured, they are a big statement how you could not love them.

What do you find the most challenging part in the design and production process?

Design comes naturally to me but sometimes you can get lost in the production depending on the size as it really all comes together at the end of the process. But once I’ve completed every pair of shoes all the effort pays off and the self-satisfaction of knowing this is designed and hand made by myself, it’s a great feeling. This is the most rewarding part of my work.

Do you approach sustainability within your design concept?

My Shoes are hand made in a way that achieves longevity and sustainability, by only using the best quality materials available, when I am designing always taking into to consideration classic unique designs, thus avoiding throwaway fashion and one season styling, making them a timeless, stylish statement piece that never goes out of fashion.

Is looking outside fashion an important source of inspiration for your designs?

Most defiantly, this is where I gain the most inspiration when designing, I loving finding the most hidden but simple details within any subject and getting so much out from them, the more unusual the theme the better.

Your SS 2012 collection pays homage to Austrian artist Gustav Klimt. In what way have your shoes incorporated his aesthetics?

His work so wonderful a real treat for the eye, I would have to say that my shoes have tried to incorporate the sense of colour, his play on curves and of course his patterns, I drew some of my own Gustav Klimt drawings inspired from his Paintings and had this lazar cut into the leathers used within the collection.

Have you aimed to coordinate your current collection with the garments and accessories from other designers?

Yes, this is in fact what I am doing at present, I am collaborating with a womenswear designer called House of Sunny. His collections are feminine but playful. He a great designer full of ideas a bit like myself. We will be showcasing the collection in London Fashion Week in February 2012. Keep your eyes out, as we will be previewing in September.

You are based in London. How does the city influence you on a creative level?

London is such a creative city I really thrive off it, I have lived her for 4 years now and I am still constantly finding new creative influences in lots of different mediums, I love the bright light in the city that never sleeps, you never know what is round the corner.

How do you think it compares with somewhere like Berlin?

Well what can I say apart from I really love Berlin! As a creative city goes Berlin is a great one especially in the art and creative department. Berlin is so much slower and more chilled out that London which I think is such a great thing. If I had the chance I move their straightaway love love LOVE Berlin.

What draw you to being part of WEAR IS ART? In what way has exhibiting your collection in a gallery setting been a different experience from your previous showcases?

Well I have always been interested in art and lived with a lot of artists in my time in London, exhibiting my shoes in a way that artists do, kind of makes sense to me. To showcase in Berlin was an opportunity I could not resist. My past showcases have been London Fashion Week, catwalks and other exhibitions, footwear can be shown in many ways and appreciated in different ways I like to mix it up.

What has been one of the most memorable experiences in your design career?

Apart from Berlin that I really loved I would have to say London Fashion Week, scouted to showcase so early on in my career was great and I love the chance to really show people what I can do, and who I am as a Footwear designer.

What is on the horizon for Elizabeth Dunn Footwear?

The next thing on the horizon for Elizabeth Dunn Footwear is London Fashion Week February 2012, bigger and better collection, with a show that will blow your socks off! I really cant wait and its going to be a great experience.

Website – www.elizabethdunn.co.uk
Blog – elizabethdunnfootwear.blogspot.com
Twitter – http://twitter.com/#!/ElizaDunnshoes
Facebook – Elizabeth Dunn Footwear

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