Move over, Brian Atwood. Watch your back, Alejandro Ingelmo. There’s a new kid in town—and her shoes tread the same sexy, sky-high terrain as fashion’s rising footwear stars.
Based in London, SD Yohans is the namesake collection designed by up-and-comer Selam Yohans. After a few years in the banking industry, Yohans did an about-face and got her Master’s in shoe design at the London College of Fashion. She worked at the Italian footwear company Pitti Capital in Florence and collaborated with UK brands Churches and Dotty Shoes before launching her own line of feminine, uber-luxe kicks in 2012.
“I was exposed to the bespoke making of footwear from a young age,” Yohans tells ELLE.com. “I grew up watching my father make shoes for men, women and children. I was always fascinated by the different textures of leather and suede—and I loved the smell of leather stacked up on the shelves of my father’s workshop.”
Fast forward 20 years, and the designer has her own workshop in London stocked with fine Italian leathers and skins, where she crafts her seriously sexy pony skin pumps, peep-toe stilettos, and architectural ankle boots, all of which feature her signature curvy high heel. Add to the mix patent ballet flats with peek-a-boo cut-outs, vertiginous platforms, two-tone shoe-ties and over-the-knee leather and suede boots and you’ve got a well-rounded collection designed to appeal to a wide range of tastes.
“I create shoes for strong, confident women,” said Yohans, who showed her Fall 2013 collection (inspired by André Dubreuil’s iconic furniture design) during Paris Fashion Week earlier this month. “The silhouettes are curvaceous and shapely, echoing the female hourglass form. Each shoe is crafted to make women feel romantic, empowered and sexy.”