MAGAZINE May 11th, 2022

FOCUS ON: Chie Mihara

Chies Philosphy turns 20

A capsule collection to celebrate 20 years since brand’s creation, through the iconic styles that have made the Spanish company famous, playing with vintage contaminations from the 70s and 80s and color variations of the new generation. Its carefree style returns as a trademark on the models that have determined brand’s success, renewing its style with the mix of colors and patterns, its true signature. 

Chie gets inspiration and influence from a mix of cultures met and experienced during her life, she dedicated her training to sculptural art and design and represent the values behind every model for the quality of aesthetics and attention to detail. Brazilian glamour, Japanese innovative design, US comfort, Spanish high quality footwear craftsmanship, all together for a successful accessory that lasts over time.

What does it mean combining tradition and innovation, nowadays? How does Chie Mihara implement it/put it into practice?

I'm not too worried about innovation, because I design things that inspire me in the present time. However, what I do focus on, as part of women's design footwear is the expression and the creation of emotion in the person who will then see them… And then there is the part of shoemaking which here, in our city, Elda, in Spain, the tradition of making high-quality footwear is a know-how taught generation after generation.  

What is your approach to sustainability? Materials? Innovative production systems?

To me, sustainability is about making high-quality products that are comfortable and have an emotional connection with the person. Why is that sustainable? Because it’s valued and cherished by the person who wears it, so it won’t be thrown into the trash after every season and she will use it for many years to come.

Bright colors and a mix of never predictable graphics. From what do you take inspiration each season to create new collection?

I love doing exercises with leather cut-outs. I mix-and-match, over and over, and sometimes I find great surprises that leave me in shock! To me it’s a game, and I always look for this state of exaltation and power! The truth is, to me design is very spiritual.

Are there any places you've ever referred to? Interesting stories behind some collections or models?

No, actually I always work very quietly, maybe I look for references in past decades but I don't remember that I was ever inspired by a place or person. Thinking or trying to get inspired by someone limits my creativity. Because in the end, a person itself always has many limits.

In your opinion, which is the most iconic shoe ever in Chie Mihara's history and why?

Chie Mihara shoes are always very colorful, fun and playful. Sometimes I get surprised that there is an audience who buys these shoes. I think one of the most iconic styles I designed was a pump with cute little eyes and eyelashes and red lips, that one I remember sold very much!

 

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