Subscribe to Style Magazine

willow boots up


Sydney designer Kit Willow-Podgornik has been learning some valuable lessons about supply and demand lately. A few months ago, she sent the models at the Fall show for her label Willow stalking down the runway in pairs of specially made corset boots. “The idea was to play on Willow’s background as a lingerie brand,” she explains of the gray over-the-knee knockouts, which lace all the way up the leg. “I figured they’d be great for the runway, and that’s it.” But Willow’s corset boots induced an immediate fashion swoon: In about as much time as it took the models to unlace the things and kick them off, she found herself deluged with calls from buyers. “There was no plan in place! We wound up making up 40 for our new store and they were gone in a week. It was almost like I could have charged any amount for them.” As it is, she has pretty much been selling the boots at cost, taking orders and producing them five at a time—though she swears that the most recent batch was the last. “Well, it’s almost summer here, and I did a pair of summer boots inspired by the corsets, which we’ll be selling in a slightly less limited edition at the store,” she explains. “And in the meantime, I’m planning a trip to Italy to find a proper factory so I can launch shoes. That seems like the obvious next step.” Yup. Inasmuch as fall has yet to arrive stateside, however, Podgornik has conceded that she might be willing to resurrect the corset boot one final time. “I suppose I’d be willing to take a few more orders from people in the northern hemisphere,” she says. “Providing demand is sufficient.”

Photo: Courtesy of Willow