The Parisian footwear label has created eight exclusive models, all riffs on its signature Mary Jane and Charles IX silhouettes in both flat and low-heeled styles.
“We studied the Carel ‘bible’ and adapted a number of their signature shapes into our new designs,” says Mak, who is now based in Paris. She noted that “Carel was very open to our take on transforming their iconic models and supported the entire development with manufacturers in Italy.”
Carel, which debuted on Paris’ Left Bank in the 1950s, is no stranger to collaborations. During its heyday in the 1970s, the brand created footwear for designers such as Jean Charles Castelbajac, Thierry Mugler, Chloé and Jean-Paul Gaultier.
“We really wanted to respect the Carel codes while accentuating their traditional creations with playful, modern personalities,” Mak said. “We began with very classic forms and decided to put a strong emphasis on straps and proportions.”
Key styles include Mary Jane hybrid sliders, multibuckle knee-high boots and the pièce de résistance — thigh-high gladiator ballet booties that lace all the way up the leg. They come in an eclectic palette of pastel suede and velvet, metallic foil and black satin fabrications.
Youthful with a vintage vibe, the shoes are delightfully girlish but shot with an undercurrent of feminine empowerment.