Caution: No Riding in These Polo Boots-------
Six years ago, South America-to-Brooklyn transplants Gabriela Perezutti-Isacson and Natalia Kuks-Jacobs were doing like the Williamsburghers do—they were silk-screening T-shirts. Fast-forward to the present, though, and they’re a rarer breed: working designers with a full-fledged women’s clothing and footwear line and, as of today, e-commerce boutique. “It’s important for us that we finally get a direct connection to our customers,” Perezutti-Isacson says. “If you are only selling wholesale to other retailers, you don’t have that. We’d like this to be a place where people can better understand the Candela girl.”
And who’s that? Think 20th-century model-turned-photographer Lee Miller, who provided the inspiration for the Fall ’10 collection. “The Candela girl is worldly, adventurous and confident,” Perezutti-Isacson explains. A worldly girl’s going to need a good pair of shoes for those adventures, so no surprise that footwear makes up around 75 percent of the label’s business. Menswear-inspired spectator shoes come in graphic prints and metallics, and over-the-knee boots have been a line staple for seasons. But no item points to the design duo’s South American roots and New York edge like the Polo boot, crafted as a feminine homage to the sportsman’s footwear of choice. (Polo is huge in South America, and Nacho Figueras, one of the game’s most famous players—thanks in part to years of Ralph Lauren campaigns—is from Kuks-Jacobs’ native Buenos Aires.) The style is sure to make a reappearance at Candela’s first-ever presentation at New York fashion week, September 9 at the Jane Hotel.
Heel Polo boot, $473, available at www.candelanyc.com