10 Minutes with Charlotte Olympia

Jewelry & Accessories
10 Minutes Interview With Shoe Designer Charlotte Olympia Dellal

Photo: Alexandra Leese

Charlotte Olympia is one of the most desired accessories brands around. Charlotte Olympia Dellal, the designer behind the label, is known for her unique twist on ladylike accessories — from flirty sky-high heels to cheeky evening bags. We caught up with the Dellal to hear about the inspiration for her bridal line, named Runaway Bride, her own wedding-day accessories, and her favorite bridal trends.

Charlotte Olympia's bridal collection was inspired by the Dellal's own experience as a bride.
The glamorous shoe designer was inspired to expand her collection of dreamy '40s and '50s-inspired footwear to include a bridal offering after planning her own wedding-day look in 2010. "Having been a bride myself, I noticed there was a gap in the market for bridal shoes, beyond the range of shoes available in different shades of white satin." Like her main collections, the designer explained that she "wanted to bring color and excitement to bridal shoes," after she noticed that the shoes offered in the market for brides felt like a bit of an after-thought. "I believe that a bride should be able to choose an exceptional pair of shoes for her special day."

10 Minutes Interview with Shoe Designer Charlotte Olympia Dellal

Photo: Courtesy of Charlotte Olympia

The bridal styles are inspired by the brand's classics — and real brides.
We asked the designer about how she finds inspiration for her bridal styles, and she explained that many were the result of custom shoes she created for brides in the past. "Many of the styles launched in the bridal collection are shoes that were originally made for individual brides. Other styles have been adapted from signatures styles from my Encore collection of classics, including Dolly, Paloma and Kitty." The designer does still create custom bridal pieces on occasion, but notes that she infuses variety into the bridal collection to appeal to many brides. "I try to offer a wide range of styles in different heights and silhouettes as well as offer less traditional colors alongside shades of white, such as leopard print, red, and blue."

10 Minutes Interview with Shoe Designer Charlotte Olympia Dellal

Photo: Courtesy of Charlotte Olympia

Dellal recommends staying true to your most natural style on your wedding day.
"I think it's important to look and feel like yourself and not that you're dressed up as a bride. When I was contemplating wearing my hair up for my wedding, a close friend mentioned that I have never worn it up before, so why would I on my wedding day? I took that advice on board and wore my hair in the 1940s wave that makes me feel my best." The designer also wore her favorite style from her bridal collection on her wedding day, and spoke of the importance of accessories that reflect your individuality. "My favorite style in the Runaway Bride collection is the leopard-print "Dolly" with a blue heel and platform, which I personally wore on my wedding day. It felt great to wear a special pair of shoes that matched my personality, not just my dress. I also wore a bespoke cat hat made by one of my favorite milliners, Marie Mercié, for fun at the reception party."

The designer's dream client? One very iconic bride.
"I love old Hollywood glamour and movie stars and pin ups from the 1940s and '50s," said the designer, reflecting the inspiration for her collections. "I especially love Rita Hayworth, and would have loved to see her dancing in the "Kiss Me Dolores" pumps."

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