Matt Bernson knows shoes. Even more, he knows all about how to make a woman feel comfortable and incredibly chic with his amazing collection of sandals and flats. Still at the beginning of his career, Bernson’s designs personify that effortlessly cool beauty of Liat Baruch, Olatz Schnabel, or any other disgustingly chic under-the-radar member of the glitterati. Luckily, we were able to catch up with Mr. Bernson and he gave us the lowdown on creating incredible shoes that embody all we hope to our summer will be.
PD: What inspires you?
Travel. The Ocean. My Fiancé’s style. Talking with the women that buy my shoes and tell me with all their heart what they want and cannot find.
PD: Which of your shoes do we need to live in this summer?
The SM Gladiator in distressed gold upper/tobacco insole. You can just slip it on. It is simple but there is more to it than a regular sandal. And when you add comfort, you can’t go wrong.
PD: What goes into constructing a chic thong sandal, as opposed to a random rubber flip-flop?
Amazingly I have no idea how to make a rubber one so it would be hard to say what the difference is. I do know that they pour rubber into a mold. With a hand made “chic” flip flop we take months to try and perfect the placement of the contact points so that it is instantly comfortable when first worn. We source non-abrasive materials for upper liners. It is imperative to make the
toe post as thin but sturdy as possible (no body likes a sandal blowout). Plus there needs to be something interesting or novel so as to give it that “must have” appeal. In short it takes time and attention to every detail.
PD: Your line has this understated cool-girl vibe happening, how do you achieve this?
Usually we come up with a design. Then start adding to it due to some insecurity that our initial concept isn’t good enough. Then we look at this sandal or shoe with all this stuff on it and then we strip that all away until we are back to the original idea. When it is simple, wearable but has a unique personality or definite style we know it is good.
PD: Do you think flat sandals are appropriate for evening?
I know that they are.
PD: We’ve gotten a sneak peek at your fall collection, and besides being impressed, we see it’s still all about flats. Do you think this trend is becoming less of a trend and more of a staple? If so, what does a gal need in her wardrobe of flats?
With all I hear about the pain and distress caused by years of wearing high heels and the relief women get from putting on comfortable but stylish flats it makes me think flats are here to stay. But the pendulum is likely to swing dramatically in the other direction. In five years the flat will be out and 6” stilettos with super pointy toes will be all the rage. As for “must have flats”
I would think that every girl should have a pair of black ones, a pair of brown ones and a fun color that they don’t match with anything else their wearing.
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