EXCLUSIVE: FRANCESCO RUSSO FOR ANTONIA
THE DESIGNER ON HIS CREED AND COLLABORATION
Francesco Russo thrives on the intimate one-on-one relationship he has created with his clients, firmly eschewing the more, more, more orgy that is riddling the fashion industry. “Luxury just can’t be fast, delivered in every corner of the world and loved by all. It takes time to make a labor-intensive shoe that becomes a desirable investment piece that should last in time,” says Francesco Russo in an exclusive interview for Antonia.
In a world obsessed with big numbers, fast-paced timing and global growth, Russo opts for bespoke craftsmanship, blending tradition and modernity, elegance and experimentation.
The collaboration with Antonia for a limited-edition sandal reflects the mo. of two visionaries in their respective fields. “(Antonia and I) have known each other from the very beginning and we’ve always had a stimulating dialogue, just like the exchange of ideas we had for this collaboration,” says Russo. Similarly to the relationship he develops with his clients in his Paris boutique/atelier, Russo seals a special relationship with his top retail partners. With Antonia he developed an exclusive, sexy and totally au courant sandal, in red, black and white, that he describes as an “asymmetrical T-strap with transparent PVC details.”
Since branching out on his own in 2013, the inventive shoe maker, whose background includes key stints at Dior, Miu Miu, Yves Saint Laurent and Dior, believes in the appeal of bespoke shoes. “From the beginning I wanted to recreate a Fifties approach, when women would get their shoes custom-made, choosing among a few selected models that they could customize to their taste,” says Russo, whose aesthetic is in fact based on a handful of focused and timeless shapes.