Bruno Frisoni, the shoe guru who paused his signature brand amidst his celebrated and intensive 16-year collaboration with Roger Vivier, is bringing it back and starting a new chapter, WWD has learned.
Starting on March 6 during Paris Fashion Week, the designer is inviting select retailers to buying appointments for a fall 2022 collection spanning about two dozen styles — and without a sneaker in sight.
“What’s missing nowadays is what I’m good at — sophisticated, sensual, feminine pieces that you keep for a longer time and not only one season,” Frisoni said in an interview. “There’s an invasion of sneakers today, why would I need to do sneakers? I’m more about a beautiful pump with a specific toe shape, a nice lower heel that is really recognizable, and beautiful boots without any seams, things like this.”
The French designer pretty much summed up his collection, which includes pumps with an asymmetrical toe profile usually only seen on sandals; ankle-strap numbers with a half-pyramid heel; neo slingbacks with a prominent, stretchy band across the instep, and sleek boots with heels of varying heights.
Fanatical about craftsmanship, Frisoni said he hooked up with the same elite Italian factory that produced his signature shoes from 2000 until 2011, and the same Paris specialty atelier he commission for the flowers that festooned some of his early designs. His latest iteration of blooming shoes boast a flower that can be snapped on or off the side of the heel.
Frisoni said he plans to make transformable shoes an integral part of his offering, including socks or sleeves that can be worn under or over shoes, and foot “jewelry” than can be worn with bare feet, and also low or high-heeled sandals.
The designer said his venture is self-financed, and he plans to start with perhaps a half-dozen retailers. He’s targeting top department stores in the U.S. and Asia, and an online player that could service the European market. CD Network is his showroom in New York.
“I wanted it to be small to start,” he said. “What I love are things that are more about the craftsmanship rather than industrialization.”
Frisoni said his shoes will retail for about 650 euros to 800 euros, with some exceptional styles running up to about 1,000 euros or more.
He plans to unveil the latest iteration of his brand to international press with his pre-spring 2023 collection during haute couture week in Paris next July.
Since exiting Vivier in 2018, Frisoni took his time to choose a project that would best honor his passion for design, and especially for footwear. Sorting, photographing and cataloging his archive reminded him of his singular focus on very feminine designs. It whetted his appetite for the venture, and the pandemic gave him additional time to hone his concept.
To be sure, he never lost his passion for design. “Fashion always has to be done with passion, and sketching is something I do every day, it’s like breathing,” he related. “And shoes, I have an energy for it and I believe in it.”
The Frenchman refreshed his label, written as one word, created a new BF logo, and designed packaging splashed with his artistic sketches, with pink dust bags inside to express his feminine approach. He’s in the midst of mounting a proper Instagram.
A popular figure on the Paris fashion scene, Frisoni started his career at Jean-Louis Scherrer. He went on to design accessories for brands including Lanvin, Christian Lacroix and Yves Saint Laurent before joining Roger Vivier in 2000.