Paul Andrew arrived at Salvatore Ferragamo in 2016 to take care of the shoes, and three years later he has finally became the first artistic director of the Italian house. The family-run business, where each product category has its own creator, has been given a new lease of life under the aegis of the English designer, who has successfully unified its image. Since his first collection, for Fall-Winter 2019-2020, Paul Andrew has demonstrated a distinct talent for designing at the illustrious Italian house that first became famous for its shoes adored by Hollywood stars.
After drawing inspiration from Michelle Obama and Nancy Pelosi and paying tribute to Hitchcock's masterpieces, Paul Andrew projects plunges into the world of science fiction - notably the films Gattaca, Until the End of the World and Matrix - to offer up a collection that revisits contemporary uniforms. "For this 'Future Positive' collection, I imagined the standard outlines of today's uniforms as the fossilised remnants of a long-forgotten past, freed from any association of class, colour or creed. This collection offers new uniforms for a utopian future in which diversity and positivity combine to transform our world for the better," explains Paul Andrew.
This Fall-Winter 2021-2022 collection aims to be young and free and doesn’t hesitate to infuse couture designs with references to the military, motorcycling, athletics and scuba diving. The pieces are hybrid and structured, with an appetite for leather and bright colours used in monochrome, but also treated wools and technical knits. On some creations, fringes swish with the movement of the body adding an extra-terrestrial aspect to the silhouette, while others feature chainmail worn next to the silver-painted skin. As for shoes, such vital elements of the Ferragamo silhouette - Paul Andrew is after all a shoe designer - the Englishman hedges his bets on cosmonaut-style biker boots, ultra-thin trainers that resemble diving boots, imposing clogs in rubberised material as well as a pair of futuristic boots with the emblematic F heel.
Skilfully avoiding that pitfall of a retro-futuristic Pierre Cardin-esque collection, Paul Andrew efficaciously takes the Italian house to a whole new level where radical creations collide marvellously with Italian savoir-faire.