LOS ANGELES — Even while thousands of fans eagerly wait to learn the lineup at next spring’s music festivals, actress Kate Bosworth already knows what she’ll be wearing on her feet.
For her latest design collaboration, Bosworth is putting the finishing touches on 10 styles of boots, sandals, clogs and mules to be produced by Matisse Footwear. After six months of developing, sampling and tweaking her first foray into footwear, she’s aiming to make her debut at retailers such as Nordstrom, American Rag Cie, Madison and Revolveclothing.com in late March.
This story first appeared in the December 3, 2014 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.
“The truth is, shoes have to be wearable and functional,” she said. “There are some women who wear 7-inch stilettos and run around. That’s not me. That’s not the collection. I want to feel comfortable and also very fashionable in my life.”
Each shoe incorporates details culled from different chapters of Bosworth’s 31 years. A surf inspiration is a nod to her breakout film, “Blue Crush,” and her fondness for the Dallas Cowboys spurred her to name blue ankle boots adorned with tiny silver stars after her friend Charlotte Jones Anderson, whose family owns the team. Her current attraction to Sixties-inspired shoes is channeled in a Mary Jane mule with a chunky Lucite heel. An art aficionado, she paid tribute to Ed Ruscha’s lithograph titled “Hot Shot” by printing the same words on the side of shiny white boots.
“Each pair has a story,” she said. “I feel I can express myself with a hint instead of screaming for attention.”
With her past partnerships with JewelMint and Topshop, Bosworth could help elevate El Segundo, Calif.-based Matisse, which was launched 13 years ago by a cofounder of Seychelles Footwear as a contemporary brand with a rocking country vibe. Whereas Matisse’s shoes usually retail for between $139 and $300 a pair, the capsule collection designed with Bosworth will run higher, from $300 to $500.
“With Kate’s name attached and the aesthetic of the collection, which is definitely an offshoot of what we’re doing, there are more editorial pieces and there’s a richer feeling in general,” said Sheena Parks, Matisse’s director of marketing, who declined to disclose sales targets. “We already have plans in the think tank for fall 2015.”
Indeed, Bosworth designed a lot more than what will hit stores in the spring. “There might be a few I want to hold back for fall,” she said. Perhaps Matisse will even resurrect the ankle bootie with four side buckles and a round toe that it named after Bosworth in its spring 2011 collection.
“For me, it’s important to translate a feeling when I design a shoe and the woman I think of,” Bosworth said. “They can transition you from a work environment like in my own life to a cool cocktail event. They’re directional enough that they stand alone as a fashion piece. They’re comfortable enough that you can wear them around all day.”