It can often be a challenge to find the right pair of perfectly fitting leather boots, not to mention a pair that will last a lifetime.
The Adelaide Review speaks to talented Adelaide designer Beccy Bromilow about her approach to shoe design with her label BB Shoemaker. The local shoemaker is known for her handcrafted leather footwear and is about to launch her new winter collection. After working and studying in a few different creative areas, Bromilow was particularly drawn to shoemaking. “I have always been interested in making and creating. I turned to shoemaking not because I wanted to make myself lots of shoes but more because I was really drawn to the sculptural process of hand-making footwear.” Creating a custom shoe design is an organic process for Bromilow. “When I start working on a new collection, I’ll begin with playing and experimenting with the leathers and then creating new forms and shapes. I guess it’s more of a ‘make and see’ way of creating new designs.” Bromilow mainly uses kangaroo and bovine leathers for her designs. “Using naturally tanned leathers gives me so much satisfaction; it is such a beautiful product. It is so unique and pliable to work with. However, there is always room for new materials and fabric to experiment with in the future.” Based at The Mill on Angas Street, Bromilow is surrounded by inspiration as she works among the talented residents in the artist hub. “There are a lot of talented creatives working around me; it makes it a great place to work, collaborate and be inspired. I am also inspired by my local talents such as B GOODS LABEL, Vege Threads and my sister who is an interior designer who I bounce lots of ideas off.” Bromilow singles out her grandmother as the greatest inspiration. “There are so many interesting people to be inspired by but I think my grandma Marjorie was so talented in all her crafts – from ikebana to costume making. She really did so much in such lovely humble way. I also inherited a pretty rad collection of clothes from her – she was a pretty hip lady back in the day.” The craft of producing a custom-made pair of shoes from start to finish is one that takes a lot of skill but the end result is always rewarding for Bromilow. “The most satisfaction I get is seeing my shoes being well loved and well worn-in. I get a really big kick out of seeing my friends wearing my shoes.” The new winter collection includes a unisex range that will be available in limited quantities and will be made-to-order online through the BB Shoemaker website. Bromilow is also busy working on bag designs and new sandals for summer. After the success with her first collaboration with Vege Threads, Bromilow is excited to work with new designers and artists. “The sandal collaboration from last summer with Amy from Vege Threads went so well and was great fun. There will definitely be more collaborations with designers and artists to come.” bbshoemaker.com Photos: Che Chorley chechorley.com