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Gianvito Rossi and the future of Italian shoes

The successful experiments of the young Italian designer

Gianvito Rossi and the future of Italian shoes

Claudia Astarita

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Gianvito Rossi is the son of Sergio Rossi, the man behind one of the most renown and appreciated Made in Italy brand for shoes. During an interview with the Hong Kong daily South China Morning Post for the opening of a new Rossi boutique in Central, the Hong Kong district densely populated by luxury labels, the younger Rossi was proud to remember how his father is still behind his success. "He taught me that you can always do better", he commented to South China Moring Post. "The idea is not very relaxing but it's the truth. My work is never finished - you constantly need to evolve and listen to improve your work. That is what drives me as a designer".

Known for being obsessed with minimalist shapes, Gianvito Rossi tends to define himself not as an artist, rather as "a frame maker focused on elegant accessories". To celebrate the 10th anniversary of the brand, he launched a limited edition Cocktail collection including lots of funny pieces, such as a bootie spelling out the word cocktail in crystals or a sandal decorated with a unique crystal cherry.

He still recalls the family's shoe factory where he spent most of his time when he was a child as his favourite playground. However, when he decided to launch his own label, Rossi tried his best to link together the ideas of femininity and elegance, "creating shoes in relation to the woman", therefore opposing "the trend or what the market requires" To achieve that, he started exploring his own ways to "fuse classic and timeless elements with modernity", although still aiming at putting together simple shapes, to be shaped with the use of innovative materials such as PVC or carbon fibre. And the results are extraordinary.

"The silhouette for me is everything. For every shoe I design, the ultimate goal is to make the woman look nicer. The shoe itself is not enough. Designers today have a super ego and want to show off what they can do and often the shoe ends up over designed. I like to see a woman walking and people to be charmed by her not the object herself. A shoe is an accessory - it shouldn't be more than that, I'm not an artist, I am a frame maker." And this is why he is so special.

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