New Generation May 18th, 2021

Haus of Honey, an emerging brand that is relaunching colorful platform shoes

by Marco Marini


High-heeled shoes with bright colors, expression of a maximalist and naif vision, able to combine the simplicity of cork with the vitality of vibrant colors, plenty of decorations, and precious fabrics: this is how the proposal of Haus of Honey can be summarized. The brand, designed by the newcomer Stefano Miele, reveals in its  name, the ironic and eclectic ability of the creative. The expression is a calembour based on the juxtaposition between the designer's surname and the reference to the Bauhaus, the school of Weimer, a symbol of Modernism. 

The brand stems from the desire of Miele to go back to the origins, to his early love for the shoe design when he admired the customers of his mother's shoe store in Gaeta. After years of work in the commercial sector for designer labels such as Moschino, Tom Ford and Miu Miu in the USA and Europe, his passion pushed him to launch a project that would connect the highest quality of the made in Italy with retro charm and a dose of stylistic affectation. 

The result is a collection of curvy platform shoes with impressive wedges, where the essentiality of the cork (a light and sustainable material by definition, obtained by the bark without damaging the plant) is reshaped by a profusion of multi-color beads, Swarovski crystals, glitter spread on the sole, and the glossy effect of the patent leather. Bright satin bands and straps add a contrasting note. Everything is declined in a warm and vibrant color palette that recalls the endless shades of seascapes, from emerald green, through bright red, orange, pale yellow, to pink. 

Manufacture is 100% Italian and it relies on the best companies in the country. The inspiration comes directly from the '70s, a decade that sanctioned the triumph of fanciful extra-sized accessories. The comfort (a conditio sine qua for Miele) is guaranteed by the meticulous study of shapes and proportions of models. 

As far as materials are concerned, the use of cork is somehow an homage to the designer's illustrious predecessors, starting with Salvatore Ferragamo, the dream shoemaker (as defined in the title of his autobiography published in 1957) who, in the '30s of the last century, was able to turn the objective difficulty in finding raw materials into a cornerstone of his vast production, using plant fiber to pack soles of numerous sandals of the Maison, like the iconic "Rainbow" designed in 1938 for Judy Garland. 

The symbol of Haus of Honey is a cartoon bear, the animal with which the founder claims to feel a certain affinity because it is "greedy, lazy, with a sweet soul that can become aggressive". The range of available sizes is definitely inclusive- from 35 to 45- as Miele says: "I want anyone who desires to wear platform shoes to be able to do it [...] I didn't want to associate my shoes to a specific gender, I firmly believe in the importance of freedom to express yourself".

Distributed by  Massimo Bonini showroom, the first Spring/Summer 2021 collection of the brand has found favor among insiders and buyers: the list of retailers includes prominent names, such as Julian Fashion, the Mode group, Enny Monaco (Mykonos), and Just One Eye (Los Angeles). The list will be soon enriched by other outstanding retailers (LuisaViaRoma, 24 Sèvres, Tiziana Fausti, etc.) To confirm this, the Milanese brand Antonia revealed, a few days ago, a special exhibition that reserves the boutiques' windows in Via Cusani 5 to the high-heeled mules of Haus of Honey. A kaleidoscope of nuances and swirls that seem particularly appropriate to accompany the season of the hopefully definitive overcoming of the pandemic.