As a model, fashion director, indie magazine editor and marketing consultant, Caroline Issa knows how to multitask. And recently she took on yet another role: footwear designer. The London-based style expert collaborated with L.K. Bennett on a capsule collection of shoes and handbags. The footwear, which hit retail for spring ’13 and remains a strong seller at department stores and on the label’s e-commerce site, punches up the brand’s usually subdued styles with hot-hued Eastern-inspired embroidery and pom-pom-embellished sandals, heels and flats. “I loved how open L.K. Bennett was with allowing me to stretch its comfort zone,” Issa said. “I wanted to do something that was … playful and worth remembering.” But did the experience inspire her to create her own shoe line? “I had such fun doing it,” she told Footwear News, “but I’m leaving it to the professionals for a while now.” Here, the Canadian-born Issa shares where she loves to live, favorite activities for her spare time and how, as a teen, she turned school uniforms into a moneymaking venture.
Best city to live in: “London. I already live there. It’s full of creative and interesting people, and the food scene is fabulous.”
Required amount of sleep: “I love eight hours. Do I get eight hours? No.”
I collect: “Shoes!”
Go-to nail polish color: “You can’t go wrong with a classic Chanel red.”
First startup business: “Hemming down — and back up — uniforms at my high school. I’d make money when girls were feeling brave to shorten their uniform kilts, and I’d make money again if the teachers started measuring the hemlines.”
Organizational style: “Mass chaos. I know where everything is in my piles, but there are a lot of piles.”
Favorite hobby not related to fashion: “Reading fantastic novels in print.”