PRAGUE (August 10, 2017): Dozens of Preciosa crystals decorate each of the buckles of the newly unveiled edition of iconic Hangisi pumps by Manolo Blahnik. The twenty pairs were developed as a collaboration between Manolo Blahnik and Preciosa.
“While working with this flawless Czech lace and Preciosa crystals, I rediscovered my appreciation for my Czech roots,” said Mr. Blahnik. “I hope their future owners feel just as special wearing them as I did while designing them,” he added after revealing the Bohemian edition Hangisi’s in the Preciosa Flagship Store today in Prague, after which he spent time with the public, patiently answering his admires’ questions in a rare public talk.
Adding to the pairs’ exclusivity, a team of Mr. Blahnik´s expert shoemakers will come to Prague in September to make sure each pair is the best fit for its new wearer.
The body of the Bohemian-inspired Hangisis is made of dark turquoise hand-made bobbin lace by life-long lacemaker, Věra Holomečková from Higher Vocational School of Textile Crafts and Secondary Art School of Textile Crafts Prague, Czech Republic.
Manolo Blahnik picked the lace type, dating back to approximately 1900, from the unique collection of more than 2,000 types belonging to the school. “Since our school was founded almost one hundred years ago, we have never made an entire shoe from lace. Creating this pair of shoes was extremely technical,” said Ivana Hyblová, School Director. “People were always interested in traditional Czech crafts and it has become even more popular recently. Working side by side with Mr. Blahnik and Preciosa makes me very proud.” Ms. Holomečková has dedicated her life to lacemaking and now teaches this fine and traditional craft in the Czech Republic and around the world, including Spain, where Mr. Blahnik was born. She made the lace for the prototype of the limited edition Hangisi herself, while the other pairs are to be completed with lace made by the best lacemakers in the Czech Republic.
Manolo Blahnik pays tribute to his Czech heritage with his designs, in that he only works with the finest products and flawless craftsmanship, making his collaboration with Preciosa a perfect partnership,” added Karel Páral, Commercial Development Director, Preciosa Components.
Later today, Manolo Blahnik opened his most comprehensive exhibition to date, The Art of Shoes, which pays tribute to his life’s work, at Museum Kampa in Prague. The exhibition continues until Sunday, November 12th, 2017. Adding to the ambience are also several chandeliers called Venus, Maria Theresa and Maria Theresa Comtess by Preciosa Lighting chosen by Mr. Blahnik himself.
With a career spanning 45 years, Manolo Blahnik is one of the world’s most influential footwear designers. His shoes have spellbound an international set of adoring and loyal devotees across the globe. Blahnik is a craftsman. To this day he makes a trip to the factories in Milan every season for a few weeks to personally bring to life every collection. All the shoes he develops are based on his sketches which get translated into prototypes at the factories. The exquisitely shaped lasts and heels he creates for his shoes are still perfected with his very own hands.
Through the years Manolo’s achievements have been recognised by various bodies in many countries, most recently the Couture Council of America and one of the highest accolades, an Honorary Commander of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire (CBE) awarded by her Majesty The Queen. He has also published numerous books, the latest being Fleeting Gestures and Obsessions with Rizzoli in 2015.
Manolo Blahnik points of distribution total at 290 points of sale in 33 countries worldwide with 12 standalone stores and a recently launched ecommerce platform - manoloblahnik.com.
Along with a leading women’s line which includes evening and day bags, the brand also has a successful men’s collection.
Preciosa’s tradition of glassmaking can be traced back five centuries to 1548 in the Crystal Valley of Bohemia, where it is still headquartered today. Founded upon the ideals of quality, durability and innovation, Preciosa has throughout the centuries achieved new technological breakthroughs and introduced the world over to the truly captivating and timeless quality of authentically crafted Bohemian crystal. In addition to its headquarters in Jablonec nad Nisou, Czech Republic, the Group operates 12 representative offices across the US, UK, Russia, China, Hong Kong and Dubai. For more information, please visit www.preciosa.com.
Higher Vocational School of Textile Crafts and Secondary Art School of Textile Crafts Prague, Czech Republic
The history of the school can be traced back to the era of Marie Therese. At one time, this lace-making school, called the School Institute of Art Production was the supreme institution in the country. Today, the school develops its legacy by teaching textile design, pattern-making and Clothes design as well as Conservation and Restoration of Textiles Textile Crafts in Clothes Design. The school pays a lot of attention to joining different crafts and art techniques of lace-making, weaving, printing, basket-weaving within the context of today’s textile and clothing aesthetics and design, making this institution one of the best, not only in the Czech Republic, but in Europe. (U Půjčovny 9, Praha 1, www.textilniskola.cz)
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