When Lily Atherton Hanbury and Katya Shyfrin founded their London based company Le Monde Beryl it was clear that the essence of their design sprung out from traditional culture. Just like their signature designed shoe with a take on the classic venetian gondolier`s slipper.
This shoe is a must to add some effortless style to your look. We had a chat with the founders.
IRMA: Which values and inspiration do traditional things hold to you?
LILY ATHERTON HANBURY & KATYA SHYFRIN: A recurring theme for us is the notion of tradition in style and in craft and we often look back to old ways of making and designing. We find inspiration in timelessness but also look at ways of reinvention; we like to think of something from the past reimagined or repurposed.
IRMA: How did you come up with the idea of building a company around the venetian, gondoliers slipper?
LILY ATHERTON HANBURY & KATYA SHYFRIN: We loved the shape of the gondolier’s slipper and were inspired by the idea that these working shoes could become something glamorous and elegant whilst retaining their practicality. We imagined combining the simplicity of the slippers with the rich textiles that would have been historically traded in Venice and along the silk route.
IRMA: Your association about your product has a lot to do with travel, adventure and excursion, how do you know where your next journey will be going.
LILY ATHERTON HANBURY & KATYA SHYFRIN: Our next journey often begins with a collaboration. We are drawn to traditional skills and craft and look for inspiration in styles that combine function and elegance. We love to work with makers around the world whose products preserve these techniques and keep traditions alive. Our most rewarding adventures have been to meet with these people and to learn from the things they make.
IRMA: Just recently you collaborated with Detroit’s majestic The Siren Hotel. Tell us more about the collaboration.
LILY ATHERTON HANBURY & KATYA SHYFRIN: Will Cooper and I met a few summers ago in Deia and discovered a shared an interest in architecture and design and began planning a slipper for the Siren Hotel. We added oxidised metal tassels to pink velvet slippers as a tribute to the beautiful hotel interiors.
IRMA: Your velvet slipper and shoes express elegance and bohemian style, a mixture that expresses effortless style to each outfit. Was that your initial idea when you started to create an everyday shoe that looks good, is comfortable and super cool?
LILY ATHERTON HANBURY & KATYA SHYFRIN: Yes, that was exactly what we were hoping to create when we set out to design our shoes.
IRMA: What shoe is out there that is so perfect you wished you had designed it yourself?
LILY ATHERTON HANBURY & KATYA SHYFRIN: Riding boots.
IRMA: Do you collect things?
LILY ATHERTON HANBURY & KATYA SHYFRIN: I collect jewellery, books and textiles.
IRMA: Is there an item in your closet that you barely wear but would NEVER give away?
LILY ATHERTON HANBURY & KATYA SHYFRIN: A Yves Saint Laurent prototype coat.
IRMA: What will be the next thing you want to design under the name of Le Monde Beryl?
LILY ATHERTON HANBURY & KATYA SHYFRIN: We are in the process of launching a capsule collection of furniture and objects for the home, jewellery, sunglasses and bags.