LONDON, United Kingdom — Behnaz Kanani is the name to know for buyers in search of a shoe designer with an age-old emphasis on craftsmanship paired with a modern eye. This month, our BoF logo showcases her aesthetic which mixes contrasting colours, exotic skins, and luxe leathers in immaculately-constructed shoes that are designed to catch a bit of attention.
After graduating from Cordwainers College in London in 1997, Kanani set her sights on Italy's traditional shoe industry at Bruno Magli in Bologna to get the kind of old-world training that money can't buy. With that technical foundation in place, she flexed her design muscle working with Sandra Choi, Creative Director at Jimmy Choo, just as the brand was starting to take off and reach uber-hot status. Then, in 2006, with brother and business partner Reza by her side, she launched her own label and has experienced promising success in the first few years of her business.
When I last met with Behnaz a few months ago, we discussed the signature she was developing for her collection. Christian Louboutin has his red sole, Roger Vivier has his chip buckle, so what would Behnaz Kanani have? I was pleased to read last month in Footwear News that she has followed through with her idea.
"For Fall ’09, I have introduced a marine fossil logo that’s featured as a metal tab on the heel of every shoe," she said in a profile describing her as one of the shoeworld's fastest-rising stars. We wholeheartedly agree and are pleased to have her in The Spotlight this month.
Incidentally, Behnaz is not the only Spotlight designer making headlines. Outgoing Spotlight designer Justin Giunta was honoured this month as winner of the CFDA Swarovski, while his chain woven brooch graced our masthead. Congratulations Justin!
The Spotlight is BoF’s showcase for emerging talent employing creativity and business acumen to make their mark in the fashion business.