CHIE MIHARA

I fell totally in love with Chie Mihara‘s website. It doesn’t really look like a company website or a brand’s website. It’s more like a personal blog where you can find pictures with friends, beautiful shoes and beautiful people wearing beautiful shoes. What I like most about it is the feeling of happiness and team spirit you seize when you look at group shots. In addition you can also find a section dedicated entirely to pictures taken inside the factory: you can spot people working and shoes being made, but if you pay more attention and look at pictures carefully, you can learn something more about the entire process of shoe-making, from the first sketch to the final “make up” through the sewing of each upper.

Going back to the reason why I picked Chie and her brand for this article, I must admit that I’ve been attracted mainly by the curious story of her life. Born in Brasil from japanese parents, she went back to Japan to study Fashion Design but she soon moved to NYC to study Accessories Design at FIT. She now settled down in Elda, Spain, where she lives with her family and founded her footwear brand. It is undeniable that every place has left a mark on her and influenced her work, as she says: […] the feminine and sweetness from Brasil, look for the twist in a design from Japan , the comfort and practicability from USA and the quality of well made things from Spain.

Chie is totally devoted to foot comfort and I couldn’t agree more: feet don’t need to suffer even if they stand 10 or more centimeters from the ground! While in NYC she had the chance of working in an orthopedic shoes store, where she learnt and understood that comfortable shoes can also be good looking. She also experienced working alongside Charles Jourdan‘s team, and she still has great memories of that time: “Jean Michael Cazabat and I worked there in the same period. Quality, perfection and how to give the best solutions to shoe construction is what I learnt from working in Charles Jourdan.”

What I like about Chie’s collections is that all the shoes look funny and balanced, they remind me so much of those shoes actresses wore in the 1930s. At the same time, I look at them and think “they must be really comfortable, with those thick heels and the platform”... I guess this is really what Chie wants every woman to think about her shoes.

There is one last thing you need to know about Chie Mihara. She’s accidentally in love with shoes. But now she’s in a long-term relationship with them and she enjoys sharing passion through her creations. When I asked her why she decided to make shoes instead of clothing, bags or other fashion accessories, she replied: “[…] shoes are closer to sculpture, which I love, and still part of fashion. They are more controllable than clothing. Somehow clothing was too difficult for me to shape it up. Maybe if I make clothing would be more like Stiff and sculptural.”

It truly looks that she puts her heart into what she does, if you watch the video below you will understand what I mean.