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1999. Looking back, I realize how much he taught me about thinking outside the box, about pushing design boundaries, and not getting caught up with what other people think—to always stay true to your vision. Prior to coming to McQueen, I had won an award from my college; several months after that, American Vogue wrote a story about my graduation collection. That prompted several American designers to get in touch, and I came here with my portfolio and landed my first job at Narciso Rodriguez. After a year with Narciso, I was headhunted by Calvin Klein to work with him until he retired, and then he introduced me to Donna Karan, where I spent the better part of a decade as the head of her shoes and accessories.

@ferragamo

AC: What did you learn from Calvin Klein? PA: When Calvin would walk into a room with an inspiration for a season, it would never change—not from that moment to the end, which is such an unusual thing. He had a very clear understanding of what he wanted, how things should look and how they should feel. It’s extremely rare to find that in a designer. I often think about that when I’m changing my mind. AC: What did you take away from Donna Karan? PA: I went from maximalist with McQueen to minimalist with Calvin, and then with Donna, it was much more about the way it feels as much as the way it looks, and empowering women. Of course, that’s a very big discussion today, but Donna was having those conversations two decades ago. AC: That probably informed, in a lot of ways, your Paul Andrew line, because I know that comfort is a huge component of what you do. PA: Absolutely. Donna gave me the education on that, and drilled into my mind the importance of comfort, specifically in footwear. So when I launched my own collection, I had a

Laser-cut bracelet with Gancini, $300, from the Salvatore Ferragamo SS19 collection

“A FRIEND TOLD ME TO TRY THE MEDITATION APP HEADSPACE... I HAVE COME TO QUITE RELY ON IT.” vision for shoes that were very fine and elegant and feminine, and were on a single sole, which immediately gives you a bit of support, rather than a big, chunky platform. AC: Tell me how you manage it all. You’ve said that you meditate when you can. PA: This is pretty new to me, so it’s funny that we’re having this conversation. I realized at a certain point in the middle of last year that there were too many things going on, and I wasn’t able to focus properly. A friend told me to try the meditation app Headspace, which walks you through the process. I have come to quite rely on it. AC: You’re super strict with your diet. 99

PA: I’m a pescatarian. I gave up eating meat almost 15 years ago. I try to eat as healthy as I can, but I really have a sweet tooth, and a penchant for cookies. AC: Loyal customers can still order a custom pair of Paul Andrew shoes, correct? PA: Exactly. I’ve put a pause on all of my wholesale accounts, but you can still buy Paul Andrew shoes customized, made-to-order through Farfetch. It’s a series of my signature styles that have sold well over the past couple of years; you can choose different colors and materials for different parts of the shoe. AC: Everything that you’re doing in your life now is leaning toward trying to create more balance, right? PA: Yeah, this was exactly why I made the decision to pause Paul Andrew. I realized I was already struggling with that balance, and after having made the decision, I’m feeling quite different. Freer. AC: Good! OK, we are done. Don’t you feel like you were in a therapy session? PA: In a way, I almost do. I need to do that, by the way. That’d be great.

Profile for The Purist

The Purist Spring 2019 Issue  

Glory, Glory Julianne- Cynthia Rowley Interviews Julianne Moore Mary-Louise Parker's Meditations Eddie Stern & Deepak Chopra on the power of...

The Purist Spring 2019 Issue  

Glory, Glory Julianne- Cynthia Rowley Interviews Julianne Moore Mary-Louise Parker's Meditations Eddie Stern & Deepak Chopra on the power of...

Profile for thepurist