Set in a bespoke gallery space in downtown Collingwood is WILFREDANDENRIC, a connoisseur of shoes that blend art with function to create visual impact and – importantly – user comfort. Alice Blackwood reports
More a gallery than a retail store, WILFREDANDENRIC is a specialist in shoes and accessories, housing a bespoke collection of wearable designs imbued with avant-garde, experimental and even architectural appeal.
Owner and collection ‘curator’, Vel Tasevski, draws on her background in fashion, advertising and film industries to apply a keen eye for detail, form and function. “I choose [shoe and accessory] designers that offer combinations of functionality with shape, form and intricate details; blended with quality materials and craftsmanship: in short designers with vision, and uniquely creative flair,” says Vel.
“Each season provides me with the opportunity to search for new and alternative designers and product so that I can offer a variety of choice,” she says.
“Each collection is a curation, and we choose to have a very limited collection – only one size run – so in this aspect we offer the gallery-like experience of a personally curated exhibition.” That said, the WILFREDANDENRIC experience is very inviting and accessible to anyone with an eye for fashion and an expressive aesthetic.
The ‘seek-out’ store is located in a step-down basement space with street front entry. Designed by Shelley Freeman, it is gallery in a previous life, the site “fitted my desire to have an edgy, classy, minimalistic, European underground experience,” says Vel. An unassuming doorway opens onto a long, eye-level display cabinet – the sort you might use to showcase jewellery. Down the steps and there revealed is a long, narrow exhibition space – “a bespoke gallery for bespoke product,” says Vel.
“It was essential for me to provide an ethereal experience that stimulates the mind and puts focus on our unique products.” Blending light and form, Vel created a three-dimension platform, “to allow the product to float in an endless space.”
The footwear you’ll discover is from the likes of Fausto Santini of Rome, whose organic shapes and fundamental simplicity of design are created with tactile materials. In contrast to Santini is underground Russian designer Nutsa Modebadze who works in raw leather and hand paints her shoes. Vel also highlights Parisian Robert Clergerie – “yet another architectural designer who experiments with heel shapes, line and form.
“Each piece is a statement and, of course, pure classics.”
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Find WILFREDANDENRIC at the Basement @ 1b Stanley Street, Collingwood.