Meet the Italian Designer Creating One of the Season’s Hottest Styles — Sneaker Espadrilles

Manebí, Emerging Talent
An espadrille from Manebí.
Courtesy of brand

For Footwear News Emerging Talent 2017, the fashion team selected 32 of the most promising and progressive names in shoes to know right now. The specifications we looked for were both formalized and guided by editorial instincts, drawing us to a diverse mixture of personalities that fused originality, intuition, verve, business savvy, on-point branding, quality, point of view, personality, cool factor, unwavering style and passion. Read on.

MANEBÍ

LAUNCHED: 2012

BASE: “Milan. I was born and raised here, and since Milan is an important market for fashion and premium footwear, I decided to establish our headquarters here.”

MADE IN: “La Rioja, Spain. A well-known district for its proven excellence in manufacturing espadrilles.”

YOUR SHOES IN THREE WORDS: “Fashionable, comfortable, meant for travel.”

CREATIVE PROCESS: “Our inspiration comes mainly from travels. We spend a lot of time scouting fabrics and leathers from the best European suppliers that match our mood board season after season.”

COMPETITIVE EDGE: “Espadrilles’ status as a modern multitasker: the wear-with-everything shoes for the warmer months transition from beach shoes to a glamorous yet laid-back pairing for a sundown drink.”

SHOP TALK: Over 300 wholesale clients in 30 countries, including Net-a-Porter, Matches Fashion, LuisaViaRoma, SSense, Le Bon Marché, Kadewe, Harvey Nichols, Excelsior, La Rinascente, Nordstrom, Anthropologie, United Arrows and Beymen.

Manebí, espadrille, emerging talent Manebí espadrille. Courtesy of brand

BREAKTHROUGH MOMENT: “In 2016 we evolved from a mono-product brand (classic espadrilles only) to introducing a new model of espadrille shoes: sneaker espadrilles. They were a major success since the first presentation and are now our best-selling model.”

WISE WORDS: “Execution is key to success. A good idea doesn’t make a company. There are several operations that need to be perfectly working in order to succeed in the highly
competitive fashion market, from manufacturing to logistics and customer
service — just to name a few.”

MENTORS: “Massimo Bonini, the head of our main wholesale showroom, has been a great mentor to the brand since its inception.”

PROUDEST ACCOMPLISHMENT: “Creating a successful direct-to-customer channel that is growing triple-digit year after year.”

WHAT’S NEXT:  “For spring ’18, Manebí is launching a collection of made-in-Italy sneakers.”

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