Pink mules, kitten heels, gold loafers. Welcome to Carrie Cooper’s world.
The New Zealand-born, London dweller is the woman behind luxury footwear label, Beau Coops.
Ahead of the label’s third collaboration with Romance Was Born, Carrie sat down with us to talk all things shoes, travel and inspiration.
Let’s start off with the big one. Why shoes?
I’ve always been pretty interested in product design, especially working with proportions. It was really the architectural element and mathematical side [of shoes] I was keen to begin with. It was also an industry that I sort of fell into.
How did you fall into it?
I actually have a Fine Arts degree, which is a bit unusual. I’ve got a double major in photography and painting, with a minor in fashion. I started off in the wholesale world of fashion, working with Australian brands like Mossimo. I went to live in London in my early twenties and I ended up meeting this guy who owned French contemporary brands like Swear and Opening Ceremony. I was offered the chance to expand my career with a footwear apprenticeship.
You describe your footwear brand, Beau Coops, as embodying ‘boyfriend chic’. Tell us more.
Beau Coops has always been about contrast. I’ve always been interested in a masculine-yet-feminine tone. The best way to describe that aesthetic is ‘boyfriend chic’- beautiful, classic pieces with a really girlie twist to them.
You’ve got anther collab with Romance Was Born in the works. What can we expect?
You’re going to see much more of our Whispering Angels collection. We really want to move the collection on and take it to the next level. We’ve used really great shapes and silhouettes, Romance Was Born’s amazing fabrics and colour palettes. [Romance Was Born] has a really incredible way of mixing colours to create excitement.
What I love about [RWB] is that every day is a dress-up and I think that’s one thing that Beau Coops is not. By coming together, we can bridge that wonderful world of everyday style and costume and drama. We don’t want to pair it back by any stretch of the imagination. The more creative, the better.
We heard the Beau Coops Spring Summer 2017/18 range is inspired by Michael Jackson’s ‘Thriller’ video. Can you tell us more?
I’ve always had a certain sports tone to my personal style. I definitely felt that [trends] right now were circling back to 1990s, sports-inspired apparel with brands like Vetements. I was looking back through the things I used to sketch to inspire me and I really used to love 1950s horror. American horror comics were what really influenced the MJ ‘Thriller’ music video.
I found it quite easy to pull a sporty/girlie aesthetic with corset lacing, strapping and armoury. Again, bringing in those balances of girlie and tough, which is why we called the collection Pretty Tough.
You divide your time between London, Australia and Italy. Have you mastered the art of packing?
Yes, it’s a skill. I have two different suitcase sizes and I’ve certainly learnt the dynamics of what fits. I always take at least one hat with me. My biggest travel tip would be to stuff your hat with underwear, so then you can fit it in your case and pack around it.
Where are your favourite places in the world to travel to for inspiration?
At the minute I can definitely say Byron Bay, for soaking up a home vibe. I’m loving it here, it's so nice to be around the familiar.
When it comes to inspiration, I’m in love with the very old ancient civilisations like the Moorish and Moroccan cultures. A trip to Agadir or Marrakech is always something I try and do once a year.
What’s the one pair of shoes we need this summer?
I think that everybody needs to replace their Birkenstocks with an amazing pair of slides. For example, the Romance Was Born Whispering Angel flat slipper slides. You can wear them everywhere, trust me, I’ve been wearing mine everywhere around Byron.