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Charlotte Olympia

Step inside the wonderful world of shoes and accessories designer Charlotte Olympia as she talks trends, shoe muses and reveals her ultimate make-up must-have...

You’ve created a number of shoe 'icons' like the Kitty Flat, what do you think makes them so coveted?

My signature 'Dolly' platform is a classic court shoe with a modern silhouette and the Kitty flat is a feminine smoking slipper with a sense of humour. They are both representations of my personal style and design philosophy and a part of the Encore collection.

You’re half-British, half-Brazilian, how do you think your heritage has influenced your design aesthetic?

I am inspired by so many things, from my surroundings as well as imagery, movies, people and places. I love collecting beautiful things, and I translate this by transforming everyday objects into something wearable. My grandmother Zehava was a very glamorous and elegant woman. She came from an era I love, which was rich in accessories, when a lady would never leave the house without a hat, gloves, stockings or a handbag to match her shoes.

The Charlotte Olympia woman is feminine, colourful, with a sense of humour.

What was it that made you want to become a designer?

I always knew I wanted to design fashion, but it was in my foundation year that I discovered that I wanted to specialise in footwear and went on to do a degree at Cordwainers in London. It was always a dream to start my own business and I decided to pursue this idea as soon as I graduated.

I love pin-ups and movie stars from the 1940s and '50s, Rita Hayworth is a favourite.

What three words best describe the Charlotte Olympia woman?

Feminine, colourful, with a sense of humour.

If not a shoe and accessories designer, what would you be?

A location scout or a party planner, I enjoy travelling and I love a party!

What's your top style tip?

I think it's important to choose shoes that make you smile and feel special. As my motto goes – the higher the heel, the better you feel! I wear super-high heels, wedges, flats and everything in between. You can really determine your day by the shoes you choose to wear in the morning. If I'm feeling particularly glamorous I'll reach for my most flamboyant platforms, but if it's a day out with my three boys, my Kitty flats are perfect to run around in.

Written by Sarah Smith