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Gianvito Rossi Unveils Glamorous Gladiator Sandals for Spring ’21, Says Italy Has ‘Proven Its Resilience’ to the World

As Gianvito Rossi unveiled his spring ’21 digital presentation during a Milan Fashion Week unlike any other, the designer said he has “never been prouder” to be an Italian brand.

“Above all, Italy has proven its resilience this year, and the world saw this,” the designer said. “Consumers expect the finest quality and craftsmanship in the world from our region, and I feel that they value this now more than ever.”

While there’s no substitute for seeing Rossi’s intricate styles IRL, his digital runway show clearly illustrates his focus on quality and attention to detail. The designer’s favorite style for spring is the Ribbon Gladiator, a tall gladiator square-toe sandal that features a ribbon ornamentation on the criss-cross ankle strap. Rossi offered a number of striking takes on the gladiator this season, including a stunning laser cut style in gold.

Gianvito Rossi RIbbon Gladiator Sandal
The designer’s favorite style is a tall gladiator sandal with a ribbon embellishment.
CREDIT: Courtesy of Gianvito Rossi

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The ribbon theme carried over into other looks, including a sturdy black boot dressed up with the embellishment. A series of easy-to-slip-on mules and sandals with flattering ankle straps resembling a wide cuff bracelet.

Here, Rossi takes FN through his vision for the season and talks about why heels are still powerful.

What was your inspiration for spring?

“I was inspired by the signature beaded craftsmanship of the Masai arts, which contrast so beautifully with the region’s landscape. I wanted to give strength to summer sandals by interpreting the gladiator in various moods.”

How did you rethink your designs this season?

“I approached it with a different perspective. I feel that a woman’s day-to-day life may have changed, but her desire to put together an interesting wardrobe has not. More than ever, our clients are looking to us to inspire sophisticated charm and beauty in their daily dressing. As events and small gatherings slowly begin to return to our lives, women are emerging with confidence in how they want to dress and feel when they step out. I am harnessing that confidence in my new collection.”

Do you think women still want to wear high heels?

“There is something that changes when a woman slips on a pair of high heels. Her entire silhouette is elevated: She stands taller and exudes a sophisticated confidence. It is a very powerful thing, and I am confident that high heels will remain part of a woman’s wardrobe for many seasons to come.”

What are the advantages of showing digitally?

“As so many people were unable to travel to Milan this season, it has been fascinating to implement the digital show for the first time ever. Obviously, a digital show involves a greater dimension of theatrics as well as a focused story which everyone will see through the same lens.”

Gianvito Rossi
Another look at Rossi’s gladiator sandal, which ties like a ribbon, just below the knee.
CREDIT: Courtesy of Gianvito Rossi

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