Camilla Elphick is fast becoming one of today’s most talked-about shoe designers, with her brand of playful, tongue-in-cheek footwear capturing the attention of the fashion world and style icons such as Alexa Chung and Amber le Bon. The British protégée of shoe designers Sophia Webster and Charlotte Olympia, Elphick offers a spirited and wholly feminine aesthetic, featuring premium, ethically sourced materials and bespoke prints. For AW15, the designer offered a playful look at the British weather with her second collection, Purrfect Storm. Styles range from sky-high pumps to modern flats, and Elphick is certainly one to watch. Take a look at our exclusive interview with the designer here.
What inspired you to create your eponymous shoe label?
I was so completely inspired when my graduate shoe collection received such a positive reaction at the London College of Fashion show that I felt totally encouraged to start up my own brand.
You’ve already gained experience working with top designers such as Nicholas Kirkwood, Sophia Webster and Charlotte Olympia. Is there anyone else you would love to collaborate with?
I would love to collaborate with a ready-to-wear label. It would be wonderful to see Camilla Elphick shoes on the catwalk.
Your Pez shoes gained wide attention and your SS15 You Got the Luck collection focused on lucky talismans. Where do you get your inspiration?
The collections all have to be fun and I love coming up with themes which are inspired by everyday life. The Pez collection was inspired by the work of American artist Kent Christensen, after I met him and his wife at his exhibition at the Eleven gallery in London.
You attended Parsons School of Design in New York. Did this have an impact on your work and are there any notable differences between New York and London style?
Yes absolutely – when I was living in New York I loved to change into fun heels for dinners and events. However, London feels a little bit more casual and cooler to me. I’m currently wearing Camilla Elphick signature silver boots in a variety of new colours, as well as flats, for day and night. Now it feels really special to jazz up a simple black outfit with fun heels to wear to parties.
Your designs have been worn by top British style icons, including Alexa Chung and Amber Le Bon. Do you have a specific woman in mind when you’re designing your collections?
There is definitely a girl we are designing for who is cool but refined and has a good sense of humour.
For AW15, your shoe designs gave a playful twist to the theme of the British weather. What should every woman have in her wardrobe to remain stylish, even when it’s likely to rain?
A great pair of winter boots will get you through all weathers. Boots are integral to all of my collections.
How would you describe your personal style?
Feminine and fun. I love wearing brands such as Bella Freud, Self-Portrait and Shrimps.
Where are your favourite places to shop in London or online?
I love Selfridges and The Shop at Bluebird in London, and Avenue32.com for online shopping.
Where are your favourite places to eat in London?
My favourite place for nibbles and a gin and tonic is at any of the Soho House members’ clubs in London. I love the CPress chain of organic cafés for super healthy days and the Good Life Eatery for everything else!
What’s next for the brand?
We are really excited to launch the AW16 collection, Babes in London, which is quintessentially British. Named after the celebrated 1993 Steven Meisel and Isabella Blow fashion photo shoot, it’s inspired by both town and country.