2010 February 23
Student designers wow Swiss accessory giant
(LONDON) Central Saint Martins is one of the most prestigious fashion schools in the world—but that doesn’t mean it can’t take a little help from luxury heavy-hitters like Bally every now and then, does it? As the beginning of a long-term partnership with the school, Bally asked 15 CSM students (first and second year) selected by Louise Wilson to submit two women’s shoe designs for the brand, keeping in mind the Bally heritage. Of those 15, five were selected: Estefani Cortes Harker, William Hendry, Frida Hosflagare, Stephanie Turner, and Charles Youssef, who had the opportunity to visit Bally’s Italian manufacturers and Swiss factories to have their designs produced.
Tuesday, in London’s Browns Hotel, the shoes were unveiled to editors and guests over afternoon tea. “It’s always good news when brands choose to support young creative talent,” said Wilson. “Bally has given these students the opportunity to realize their designs, and an invaluable insight into the operation side of their chosen field.” Although the project wasn’t initially intended as a contest, one winner was picked (and cash prize awarded), to Hendry, a first-year at the school. His two shoes, one pump and one ankle bootie, have a curved, architectural heel in a combination of black suede and leather. “My inspirations come from modern history; how humans live is a major element within the design process,” he wrote in a statement. “Design has to have a worth, be in aesthetic, social, or personal.”
It has not yet been decided if Hendry’s or the other finalists’ designs will go into commercial production. However, Bally plans to continue to partner with the school for the foreseeable future, with possible upcoming collaborations including ready-to-wear and other accessories.