Think on your Feet: Five minutes with Souraya Karami of Esska
Earlier this week I was fortunate enough to speak to Souraya Karami, founder and designer of Esska Shoes, a London-based footwear brand specialising in stylish, organic designs for 'confident women who place equal value on comfort and beauty'. Having initially trained as an architect, Souraya brings a unique approach to shoe design in her products, and Esska is becoming increasingly popular around the world.
"I believe in inner beauty and the concept of feeling good" says Souraya, "it's the harmony with oneself that makes one look good." - Souraya Karami
Esska is a brand I've personally loved for a long time, having been drawn to its clean lines, fuss-free style and undeniable comfort; I've owned pieces from previous collections and worn them literally into the ground! These shoes are well-made, stylish and ideal for women who don't always want to suffer in the name of fashion.
I asked Souraya a few questions about her label and its origins...
What led you to start up the label Esska?
I could not find shoes I liked. Simply... Shoes for me and my friends. Shoes that are stylish, minimal, practical, and most of all, comfortable.
What is this season's collection all about?
Minimal, geometric, practical, and colorful.
How is your own personal style concept reflected in your designs?
I design what I love to wear. Yes I end up with favorites and less favorites, but all my shoes reflect my style. do you think it's easier these days to find comfortable shoes that are also stylish?
I still feel it's hard to find them, but maybe a bit better than 10 years ago. I think people are more and more aware that they need to take care of their feet, and are looking for comfortable shoes.
The growth in demand has led to more brands filling the gap, but there is still a lot more to fill. I still hear a hint of surprise in my customers voices when they try the shoes on and say: 'oh, they are comfortable', as if they did not expect them to be. As if they were supposed to suffer for nice shoes!
How does your background in architecture influence your designs?
In so many ways. The process, the thinking, the end product. The visual balance of the shoe (or unbalance), the attention to details, the construction.
Wat key trends have you picked up on for this collection?
Brights, Fluorescents, metallics.
which other designers' shoes do you personally admire/love to wear?
Fiorentini and Baker
To find out more about what's new at Esska, you can follow the brand's Facebook page.