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InStyle | February 2014

By Katie Couric

Tell me about your new shoe line. I’m sure you were approached a million times. Why do it now?
Earlier opportunities never seemed right. I kept saying, “This just isn’t what I imagined.” If I’m going to ask people for their hard-earned dollars, I’d better be making shoes I want to wear. About a year ago, I was about to sign with this big company, and I was hemming and hawing. I realized my real dream was a smaller line, my name, built in Europe, at a reasonable price point. Beautiful, simple shoes, the kind I remember from when I first came to New York – the Maud Frizons, the Charles Jourdans. And the person I would most like to partner with was George Malkemus, who runs the Manolo Blahnik brand. But I thought, well he’s kind of otherwise engaged. Still, I called him and said “George, I have this crazy idea.” And he said, “Be at my office tomorrow.”
The shoes are beautiful and ladylike. When I heard you were doing a line, I wondered if they might be more Carrie – more outrageous.
No, but they’re sexy and feminine. By the way, they all have grosgrain as a trim or accent. When I was little, I wore a grosgrain ribbon in my hair every day.
So this is an homage to that?
Yeah. To my mom, who made me wear them!
Such great colors too.
We tossed out the idea that neutral only means brown and black. Tweaking rules, of like, what’s appropriate for the office. I mean, what – are you less capable if your shoe is the color of a berry?
This is such a good fit for you. Did you always love shoes?
I did, but I didn’t have a lot. We all got two pairs a year. We’d polish them every Sunday. I loved going to the shoe store. First of all, it was air-conditioned, which was such a big deal, and stores were nice. We had a town mall called Kenwood (in Ohio). With Buster Browns.
Buster Browns! Our store (in Virginia) was Hahn’s.
The shoes were beautifully made. I’d run my hand over the stitching and study the heel. I wouldn’t get to choose; my mom would say, “This is the shoe you’re getting.”

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