Manolo Blahnik, the shoe designer-stroke-footwear icon is a man who rarely gives interviews or appears on the red carpet, giving him a Kate Moss-esque sphinx-like allure. Naturally, therefore, when Bahnik opened up to Footwear News about his life and almost 40-year long career, Grazia Daily fell on his every word.
Blahnik spoke to the fashion bible for a rare interview, where he describes his achievements thusly: ‘I’ve never really thought about my success, but I guess it's true. I have been going for a while’…. ‘Suddenly, people seem to really like my shoes again.’ Suddenly?!
Manolo also talks about how he works – he still designs every pair himself at the age of 68 and oversees their Italian production, describing himself as ‘really difficult to work with’ because ‘I'm never satisfied. I always find something wrong’. He adds that that ‘just today, I was looking at a shoe [here in London], and there was a fault, so I called the factory and told them to do it again’.
Other snippets from the interview include –
Talking about his first ‘job’: ‘Growing up [in the Canary Islands], I grabbed any animal walking around and made them shoes with silver foil. I had a fox terrier and made shoes for him. I made them for lizards. I've always had a fixation with limbs.’
On his alternate career choice: ‘My mother wanted me to be a writer. Or I would be directing movies or dressing them up. But it's too late for that now. Maybe later, I can do my memoirs. But that would be so tiring!’
And some of his favourite women to work with: ‘Paloma Picasso, Bianca Jagger, Tina Chow, Loulou de la Falaise. They're 'my time' girls. I was so sad [when Loulou died this month]. She used to come into the store and try things on. I remember going to her wedding, too. We had such an amazing time.’
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