For Fancy Shoes That’ll Put A Spring In Your Step, Meet Designer Laurence Dacade
For Laurence Dacade, her love affair with footwear began with her very first solo shoe purchase at the age of fourteen. The red and blue striped ballerina flats featured a huge bow, and it was these beauties that reeled her in, and since then, she’s been hooked on shoes.
Fast forward, and Laurence trained at the AFPIC School of Shoe Design to develop her design skills, and learn the technical process of footwear design. Come 2008, and this Parisian designer had established her namesake luxury label, and her founding ethos was to give women a sense of liberation.
When it comes to aesthetic, Dacade channels a look that’s a little left of center with heels, boots, and sandals that are filled will fun, freedom, and of course, plenty of French class. Fantastique!
Felicity Carter: What was your first fashionable memory?
Laurence Dacade: When I was a student, one night, I was sketching legs and I was sketching them a lot to get the movement – and I was watching a TV show with Karl Lagerfeld to keep me company. At some point, he said – and it was the middle of the night and at that time it was probably the 100th sketch of leg I was doing – “do not be afraid to draw for the trash”. At that moment, his sentence, the image of his gesture throwing the sketch in the bin resonated with me and since then, this thought always accompanies me when I sketch.
FC: How, when, why did you get into the industry?
LD: As far as I remember I have always been obsessed with shoes and making my passion a job has been the most rewarding decision I made. I first started with textile design which taught me the movement and emphasized my love for colors and textures. Then I went back to school to learn everything about the shoes, not only the design but also the making of them, and everything followed very naturally since then. It is true love and passion.
FC: How would you sum up the aesthetic of your shoes?
LD: I like shoes that have a meaning. The most important is that they have to accompany women throughout their everyday life, so I add to my shoes: elegance, timelessness, comfort mixed with the strength of the masculinity and the sensitivity of the femininity and vice versa.
FC: Who do you design for?
LD: I always have in mind all women in the world, their attitude, their allure, they all inspire me when starting a collection.
FC: Which was the first-ever pair that you designed and how did it come about?
LD: The firrst pair I drew for my collection was the Merli boots. I wanted a shoe that could be worn freely, interpreted by women according to their look, and way of life. Merli can be worn with closed or open buckles, they work with any outfit, everyday with everything. It belongs to the collection since then it has been reimagined every season.
FC: What is on your current mood board?
LD: I am currently working on the spring/summer ‘22 collection. I am looking for wellness, comfort, and lots of positivity. We are living in difficult times and I want to bring softness, happiness, and freedom to women’s feet. That is what my colorful mood board reflects today.
FC: Where are your pieces made, and what’s the process?
LD: All my shoes are produced in Italy by talented craftsmen. I bring them the sketch, sometimes even draw the shoe on my feet – mostly sandals – to show what I am looking for.
They bring quality to every step of the process with their rigor and precision - luxury is in all the small details. It is always very emotional when I receive the first prototype, a dream come true.
FC: What is luxury to you?
LD: I have been lucky to work with talented people for various Maisons de Couture and get the freedom to express myself, that is luxury to me.
FC: Currently, which is your favorite piece and how do you wears them?
LD: My favorite at the moment are the Bedford boots that I wear everyday. They will be launched next winter and belong to a capsule collection that I made with Sally Singer named ‘New-York: 1 city 5 essentials’. They are platform boots and high as a stiletto, as light as sneakers, and the rubber sole makes them so easy to walk in. I wear them with short pants and they are perfect for dancing, running, and living freely.
FC: What has been your career highlight to date?
LD: Being able to do my dream job is the highlight of my life, and I hope the best is yet to come! I have already lived so many great moments and have been able to share so many of my dream shoes.
See the full range on laurence-dacade.com.