British footwear label Young Soles is a London-based, award-winning label, recognized countless times for its exceptional quality and charming designs. With a focus on bringing back timeless classic shoes, every Young Soles shoe has a twist of contemporary styling and always pays homage to the brand’s British heritage.
The luxury footwear company is back with yet another gorgeous collection for the FW19 season, and you can check out a few images from their lookbook below while learning more about this brand’s unique ethos in our Q&A below!
What made you want to design for children?
Our brand was born out of the frustration our founder Louise Shill felt when trying to find footwear she liked for her first daughter. There was a wide selection of “sensible” and “glitter-covered” shoes, but nothing that matched her tastes. Louise was a seasoned adult and children’s footwear designer and saw that there was a gap in the market for cool, retro-inspired British classics with a modern twist for children.
What inspired the name of your label?
We loved the double meaning of our brand being true to its purpose of being a children’s footwear brand “for young soles” but also that it rang true in our brand ethos of inspiring childhood memories and keeping our souls young.
What is your brand’s mission statement or goal?
Our brand ethos is to inspire childhood memories, either through our footwear “I had a pair just like them when I was growing up” or through our photography and branding.
What are the motivations or inspirations behind the designs?
We find creative inspiration from everywhere but always tie it back to our childhoods. It could be a song or a style movement, an old jumper or a toy we remember or just an old photograph we have found in the attic.
Is there a style decade you are inspired by?
Due to the ages of the Directors, we tend to be inspired by late 20th Century fashion, music and styles.
What makes your label stand out in the industry?
We felt that children’s footwear was getting a bit boring and the same. We would like to think that we came along and added something new. We would like to feel that we continue to do this by bringing styles and constructions common in adult footwear to our children’s footwear.
How does your design philosophy change when creating for boys vs girls?
We consider all our shoes to be unisex, although we can see how some colors would work better for particular genders. Our philosophy is to create footwear that is built to last with all the features parents should expect from good quality children’s footwear, our lasts follow the shape of the foot with a wide toe and narrow heel. We use soft and supple leather to make our uppers and linings, allowing the upper to mould to the contours of the foot. Our lightweight and flexible outsole mix traditional detailing with contemporary materials, chosen for growing feet and first steps.
What is/are your favorite item/s from the current collection?
The Fall Winter 2019 collection has been inspired by days playing outdoors as the temperature drops and nights draw closer, creating an autumnal palette of cherry patent, chestnut brown, black, navy, and brick. We continue with everyone’s favourites of T-bars, brogues, and boots, but also have some amazing new wool-lined hiking boots and some Brit classics such as a new crepe-sole Chelsea boot and an 11-hole lace-up monkey boot.
What do you have coming up that you are really excited about?
It is still in development at the moment… so don’t tell anyone… but we are currently developing a Vegan range of some of our most popular styles. We have a few styles ready for our Spring Summer 2020 collection.