BEHIND THE BRAND: TAKING 5 WITH WITTNER’S A-TEAM
How did Wittner come about?
GC: Wittner is actually over 100 years old! We are a fourth-generation family company which was founded all the way back in 1912. The business has long been dedicated to designing high quality fashion footwear that not only looks beautiful but makes you feel it too, and we strongly believe in the unmistakable power of wearing that perfect pair of shoes!
If you could sum up Wittner in 3 words what would they be?
GC: Wittner in three words would definitely be Modern, Classic & Feminine
What has been Wittner’s most exciting project to work on so far?
AE: There’s so many great ones, it’s hard to choose! We have a few alignments in 2017 that we are particularly excited about, but looking back Wittner launched a huge centenary campaign to celebrate the 100th anniversary which was a particularly exciting time. We also freshened up the brand in early 2015, which included everything from a modernized logo to new brand ambassadors. We held parties in every state to celebrate so it was an amazing, fun but busy year!
Has Wittner faced any major hurdles before reaching its success?
AE: There are always hurdles in changing markets, but Wittner have adapted and reinvented many times over to overcome these challenges. The brand’s success is rooted in its ability to be adaptable, and that’s come with years of experience.
Which celebrity would you love to see wearing Wittner?
GC: Our top celebrity girl crushes range from Blake Lively and Natalie Portman to Gigi Hadid and Alexa Chung. We love any celeb who is in-line with our brand message of being true to themselves and walking with just the right amount of confidence in their step.
What are the next steps for Wittner?
GC: We can’t believe it, but our next big campaign is AW17, launching in February! The campaign and collection has a very 90’s vibe with lots of studs, velvet, embroidery and statement details. For now we’re loving Summer but we can’t wait to share this with you all in the not-too-distant future. We’ve also got some very exciting collaborations locked in for the middle of 2017 which are top secret for now… Stay tuned!
What is your favourite Wittner shoe to ever be designed to date?
GC: I’m a massive fan of the black suede Carlo mule which is actually from this season – they’re my all-day, everyday go-to heels because they’re so comfy.
AE: So hard to choose one and there have been some incredible designs over the years, but I think the Teegan heel in any colour is that beautifully classic and feminine shoe that every girl needs in her wardrobe.
FROM LEFT – RIGHT: Gemma Carmichael (Digital Content Manager), Amy Eleftheriadis (Marketing Manager) + Louise Patrick, Wittner Product Manager
Any advice you would give to up and coming shoe designers?
LP: As a footwear designer, you are both an artist and product creator, so strong sketching skills mixed with creativity is the recipe. You will be judged heavily on your portfolio presentation when applying for design roles-so get drawing! Industry experience is also key in starting on your journey, so another tip is to jump onto as many internships as you can, have patience and stick with it! Always remember that shoes are special to so many people in many different ways, so you are creating with the aim of improving and exciting peoples lives.
What does a typical work day involve at Wittner HQ?
LP: We work almost a year in advance, so there are always so many things on the go. A typical day starts with coffee (obviously) then trend meetings and design reviews mixed in with fitting sessions in the afternoon. My favorite part of the day is when we get new samples delivered from the factories. Opening the boxes is like Christmas morning every day!
What are your top three tips for taking care of shoes?
- Firstly, prevention is key. Waterproofing spray is a must, even in summer, as it doubles as much needed ‘ Party Proofing’. With new season textiles like velvet and embroideries arriving, you can’t use too much!
- For quick touch ups, a Wittner Instant Shine Buff is an easy way to make your black leathers look like new again, just buff and go! Perfect before meetings or a night out.
- Finally, for those well loved leather items in need of a little TLC, a little Wittner Leather Crème goes a long way. To put life, colour and condition back in your leather shoes, a little on a soft cloth can make most leather like new again!
Ultimately when it comes to our shoes, if you take care of them, they’ll take care of you!