“You know I always start a collection based upon my travels,” purred Paul Andrew, reminiscing about a trip to Turkey that inspired his latest collection for pre-fall ’16. There to visit the retailer Beyman, he also made a point of visiting the sights and translating Istanbul’s distinct architectural style into a decorative ode to all things Byzantine.
The collection featured many elaborate constructions, from a caged heel based on traditional Islamic patterns to carved wedges and heels that took considerable work and had his Italian factories scratching their heads. “I sketched constantly while I was there and took millions of photos. But still, I spent four days with them in Italy just carving away myself to get it right.”
Andrew also wrapped wedges, low-slingbacks and pumps in a Turkish ikat jacquard based on silk scarves he picked up from the Grand Bazaar. “Pant volumes have now become so much wider that now women are wanting a heavier shoe,” he said, picking up one of last season’s top-performing platforms that he had brought back again to meet demand.
Speaking of what women want, Andrew also introduced what might be the most cushiony stiletto ever, with a specially-developed foam island placed under the ball of the foot.
The extreme comfort was belied by a strappy matte satin upper and towering stiletto heel. The style is called the Yasmine (they all got Turkish monikers this season) and it had all the makings of another strong signature for this designer and frequent-flier. “I’ve been all over the place lately, most recently Dallas and Toronto,” he said. “And women keep asking me to do higher heels.” And that might just be the key to his success: he listens.
To explore the entire collection, click through the gallery below: