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5 Minutes With: Enio Silla and Monica Ciabattini

In the midst of production meetings and collection designing, we managed to snag a few precious moments with the accessories designers behind Le Silla, husband-and-wife duo Enio Silla and Monica Ciabattini. Their previous experience crafting shoes in the Italian luxury goods market has made them well-equipped to carry out their desires when crafting their own brand and business. Le Silla is well-known for their towering stiletto heels, a choice that never goes out of style no matter how much trends change. When the duo behind a brand hold strong, feminine women as their muse, it’s no wonder that stilettos are their shoe du jour.

When it comes to creation, there are two spheres of influence at work. One is pragmatic, and the other is artistic. The former relies on “historical and political evolutions in our society”. It is these societal changes that transform the relationship between women and their wants and needs. For example, we live more in public than ever before so a well-crafted image is paramount. A stiletto heel worn with a stylish cocktail dress at a fundraiser sends a message of confidence and capability. The latter influence comes from the creative endeavors behind architecture, interior design, and cinema. Each of these three spheres of inspiration has to do with creating an environment and a visual landscape. For that reason, Le Silla’s colorful, retro-inspired, Art Nouveau, and Eco Urban styled shoes are a perfect fit for a modern woman. Since they are the experts, we asked Silla and Ciabattini to tell us the three essential shoes that every woman must own. Their reply included a fourth suggestion: “One open-toe pump in black patent with a 12 cm heel, one pointy toe in red leather with a 10 cm heel, one over-the-knee black suede boot in an 11 cm heel, and finally one flat pair of jeweled sandals.” Consider this advice stored for future reference.

We catch up with Monica to ask her about life, fashion, career, and her loved ones in this quick-fire interview segment.

Most treasured possessions? My 3 kids. Most romantic place in the world? My garden with white roses and blue agapantos in the summer. Greatest extravagance? None, I don’t like extravagance. Cheapest thrill? A movie. Labels you love? Rick Owens for t-shirts, Rag and Bone for jeans, and Stella McCartney for jackets. Perfect idea of happiness? A holiday on our boat with the family. Dream client? A lot of dream clients are already Le Silla clients! Fantasy dinner party guest? Jessica Rabbit. Favorite food? Parmigiana (baked eggplants with tomato and melanzana) and hummus. Favorite sound? Amy Winehouse. Best film? Whatever Works by Woody Allen. Best book? Un uomo by Oriana Fallaci. Best advice? Always have a priority list in your life. If you weren’t a designer, you would be? A famous chef. Secret hobbies? I can’t tell you.

Le Silla shoes are available in Dubai at Harvey Nichols, Mall of the Emirates.


interviewed by CAROLINE SEIF|written by GRACE GORDON

-May 3, 2012

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