Fabrizio Viti is the hottest fashion shoe designer to watch in 2022
Fabrice Viti is a vision of the beauty sitting in her Paris apartment, wearing a navy blazer jacket and matching pants without shoes – “my uniform,” says the shoe designer. With his tall stature (all 6’3) and his self-deprecating reference to his bald head in a joking way, Viti reminds me of the beloved main character of Me, Ugly and Wicked (although much, much more beautiful) – formal, eccentric, excellent in his profession, but with an inescapable appreciation for childlike innocence that simply arouses the joy of living.
Growing up in the small Tuscan town of Carrara with a strong female presence in her family, Viti turned her love for fashion dolls and 1970s TV shows into a career in her own right in shoe design. With decades of experience under his belt as an in-house shoe style director at luxury houses like Prada, Gucci and Louis Vuitton, and with a motto of “What matters is that whatever you decide is that your intention is good, “Viti has maintained a loyal following for the past 20 years, including Pat Magrath, Marc Jacobs and many more.
In February 2017, Viti decided to venture out and establish its eponymous brand: “I didn’t want to be an old designer trapped in a bubble.” Viti talks about the decision that perhaps seemed sudden to many. “I had more confidence in myself. It wasn’t done by ego, it was just so that I could express something that I couldn’t express before. And that’s exactly what he did.
In recent seasons, the Viti line of daisy-adorned and comfort-focused styles of clogs and sandals has become the brand’s signature, and they are set to become the hottest fashion accessories in 2022. The bold incorporation of thicker shapes along with the contrast between leather and sheepskin made the collection a fan favorite, even during the pandemic. What prompted Viti to deliver such a different collection from her previous works?
“Honestly, it wasn’t a deliberate or ‘intended’ move to throw the Jean Daisy clog. Viti says, “I thought the clog would be an extremely fun and fresh addition to my collection. I just felt that women needed something that had a happy feeling and the clogs are very related to my childhood memories and a gentle demeanor.
Digging a little deeper, I ask Viti what keeps him inspired after over 30 years in the industry with arguably the most amazing career path.
Viti does not hesitate: “I take inspiration from my own references from the past from movies, old TV shows and of course music, but I always watch what is happening around me in the present. The designer thinks for a moment and explains that he never looks at his phone when it’s out, whether it’s on a trip or just in a cafe. “I would say that my inspiration is a kind of synthesis between the past and the future.”
Having had the privilege of collecting many inspiring anecdotes during his time working in the industry and always drawing with an old-fashioned pen on paper, Viti’s designs never start from scratch as he works to develop a version. evolved, improved and reinvented from whatever pops into his mind. “In the new collection, my favorite styles are the new platform sandal, the Tima platform and the Bibi heeled sandal. They both exude a functional 70s vibe. The Tima platform has the platform completely covered in sheepskin and appears to have fallen from the Barbarella spacecraft. This new Spring Summer ’22 collection is finally a flirt for a return to more feminine styles.
Another source of inspiration for Viti is her love for Barbie. It is well known that the designer shares his room with around 600 women, all of his collectible dolls. The charming native of Italy is visibly lively and smiling when he talks about his passion which has a huge impact on his work to this day, and his dolls are arguably the best dressed in the world, with miniature clothes specially commissioned by Prada and Miu. Miu as well as Viti’s own shoe designs.
When asked to describe her audience, Viti said, “A woman who chooses what she wears to please herself and not for the people around her.” A self-proclaimed Debbie Downer, Viti said he expected the responsibility and hard work that came with her solo career, but he didn’t quite expect the interest or the cheerful reaction to her creations. namesake collection.
Viti remains incredibly humble even after rubbing shoulders with the best in the business for decades, and he truly appreciates the female voices surrounding him in his designs. “I’m a man who designs women’s shoes and I never even wear shoes myself! Viti laughs. “If I have a bad reaction to something that I really like, I think about how to make it work instead of ignoring the voice or completely compromising my design. I also understand that my vision can be a bit precocious at times, and the reason I listen to women a lot is that my designs are made to be worn by them.
But soon, women’s shoes won’t be all that Viti offers. “We plan to continue to grow as a brand and maintain my integrity as a designer, to keep joy at the forefront of the creative process. Viti confirms that the brand is looking to incorporate men’s styles into future collections, which will be less flamboyant and more understated, reflecting Viti’s personal style.
Considering how well-dressed Viti is even for our relatively informal Zoom call, I couldn’t help but wonder what he was wearing during the lockdown – does he also own sweatpants like the rest of him? ‘between us and maybe skipped a shower or two? “The same, my blazer and pants uniform.” He smiles, confirming that he dresses the same every day regardless of his route. Is it because he wants to be ready for every Barbie visit? I question. Viti now shows a broad, cheerful smile: “Yes. She is so small that you would never know when she is there!
The new Fabrizio Viti collections are now available online at www.fabrizioviti.com.