Shoe Club: New Kid
Rachel Beagley is the designer of New Kid shoes. Here, we go behind-the-scenes of her latest lookbook (shot in Cinque Terre) and find out which shoes made Rachel hip for an entire year.
Where are you from?
Originally, from all over Australia. Now I live in San Casciano, just outside of Firenze, Italy. I am moving into Firenze in the next couple of weeks– a new office-slash-studio that's a lot more professional than the converted barn I've been living in up until now.
What makes your shoes special?
They are a bit dorky, but they bring cliques together. You can wear them anytime with everything, they are just so damn handy.
What changed about your shoes when you moved to Italy?
The entire aesthetic– New Kid grew up. I also became a lot more involved in the entire process.
Rachel and her dog Marty.
What's inspiring you right now?
I am in the middle of summer 2012, so I'm thinking "tomboy glam": Bridgette Bardot lazing about but ultra casual. I'm moving on a bit from the pop '60s slippers and deconstructed styles of this summer, but sticking with a familiar feel. In general though, I'm inspired by shades of peach, forests, textiles, embroidery, Nordic ceramics and the Italian countryside.
Tell us about the best shoes you've ever owned.
Red Reebok Hi-Tops circa 1990. They made me–the perpetual new kid– hip for one entire year. They left a big impression– they gave me a bit of confidence and helped me kick arse when I was 11. Hoping to make shoes that leave an impression, I founded New Kid, so the "new kid" is always noticed.
The books that inspired the Summer 2011 collection.
What music do you like to listen to in your studio?
I listen to the usual newish things like Slow Club, Summer Camp, Avi Buffalo, Beach House, Harlem and older things like Pulp, Jens Lekman, Depeche Mode, Jesus and Mary Chain, T. Rex, Bauhaus, Kate Bush and Felt. I really enjoy drawing and listening to epic apocalyptic audio books like The Passage and The Fall.
What kind of shoes did you love as a kid?
I didn't really wear shoes. I grew up in Darwin– I was lucky to be in clothes. However, I was a pony club kid, so I found I was in riding boots a lot.
Marty behind-the-scenes during the Summer 2011 lookbook shoot.
Who would you love to see in your shoes?
I like to see really devoted followers in them. The ones who truly love them.
If you could make a pair of magic shoes, what power would they have?
Shoes of coordination. I fall a lot, so they would save a fair amount of humiliation. Maybe I could hover an inch or so from the ground.
What adventures do you want your shoes to have next?
I saw this place on the news here in Italy the other night. I think it was in New York City, a bar where you take your dogs and try on shoes (even dog shoes) and dance the night away. Seemed quite hilarious and I wouldn't mind taking a bunch of pals, a pile of New Kids and some canine friends there to see what mischief we could get into.
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