Queen of Shoes: Tamara Mellon, Founder and President of Jimmy Choo Featured

A full luxury house with shoes at the core

What makes a Jimmy Choo shoe so unique and recognizable? 
We believe in innovation, design, craftsmanship and in offering a great range of styles to fashion-forward women. The Jimmy Choo look has always been maintained as we have always stuck to our brand philosophy. All our shoes are made in Italy and finishing touches such as the embellishments on our jewelled shoes truly make a pair recognizable!

Where does inspiration for all the different designs come from?
The inspiration doesn’t necessarily come from a place or an era. I like to call it Zeitgeist - it is more of a mood, a general attitude. I have been on inspirational trips with my team to India, Istanbul and Miami to name just a few, but we also find inspiration in music, art and photographic images and are often inspired by a particular iconic figure or time in fashion such as the 80’s mood of post-punk pop.

How would you describe a woman who wears Jimmy Choo? 
The Jimmy Choo customer does not have an average age, a specific career or income. She is confident, independent, stylish and demands that the collection offers product to suite her lifestyle; from the trend items that are represented in our advertising campaigns to the rubber soled flats, jelly thongs, high wedge espadrills and fur-lined booties.

How long does it take to manufacture a pair of shoes, from designing to the finished product?
The collections begin with inspiration sketches; a heel or a strap often defining the mood for the season. The process is lengthy from sourcing materials and working on hand-made detailing to produce the final product. Of utmost importance is the craftsmanship, rich materials and quality of the leather with an insistence on comfort and fit.

What are your bestsellers?
Some of our bestsellers include styles such as Clue - a great platform slingback that is extremely versatile and we offer it in various finishes and colours. A couple of great styles from Autumn/Winter ‘09 which would work from day to night are the Jazz shoes and Karina shoes.

What are Jimmy Choo’s biggest markets today, and the fastest-growing ones? 
One of our latest European stores is on the wonderful Rue St Honoré in Paris that we are delighted about! The U.S.A is our biggest market and our fastest growing markets are the Middle East and the Far East.

Do you feel that women’s taste in shoes is changing? How do you see the near future for Jimmy Choo?
My passion is footwear and my vision has always been to build a full luxury house with shoes at the core. We are focused on developing the collection with a focus on innovation, design excellence and building our casual classifications as a compliment to our historic strengths in day and evening shoes.

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