What do you do?
I am Founder and Creative Director of Australian footwear brand Sol Sana.
Where did you get the name ‘Sol Sana’? What does it mean and what was your catalyst for starting a shoe label?
We first launched under the name: Sole Society, which we successfully sold for several, seasons here on home soil. When it was time for us to enter overseas markets the name Sole Society was already trademarked so we had to come up with a new name that we could globally sell under. After a then recent trip to South Africa we rebranded under the name: Sol Sana, which is a loose translation of Sole Society in the Zulu language. I started the label because I simply could not find a decent pair of leather sandals for under $150. I realised there was an abundance of apparel lines that were producing on trend pieces at an affordable price point but nothing in the footwear category.
What has been the biggest ‘pinch me’ moment since creating Sol Sana?
Definitely having Sol Sana feature in American VOGUE! We have also dressed some pretty high profile celebrities including Candice Swanepoel, Jessica Alba, Jamie King and Miley Cyrus.
If you could steal anyone’s (alive or dead) shoe collection, who would it be and why?
Tough one! My style crush is Diane Kruger and that girl never steps out in ugly footwear so I would have to say her.
You must travel a lot for your work. What essential items do you always have in your carry on luggage and handbag?
A spare change of clothes, incase dare I say it, my luggage gets lost! My laptop as I usually work on most long haul flights. Evian facial spray, The Jojoba Company travel essentials kit for freshening up, a good book, lip balm, headphones, an oversized jumper for when they crank the AC, and a pen to fill out my arrivals card to speed up the process when I land as I hate waiting in lines at the airport.
How would you describe a ‘Sol Sana girl’?
She’s trend driven, fashion minded, and believes in quality and style without the expensive price tag.
How important has social media been in the success of your business?
Extremely important! It increases traffic to our website and essentially increases sales. It is a great way for people to connect on a personal level with Sol Sana, as it is an insight into our world and personality, social media also allows us to understand our major demographics and audiences.
What are your staple fashion items?
I believe in investment pieces, as these are the foundations for a great wardrobe. A good leather jacket and leather pants, these will last season after season. A crisp white shirt is timeless, Sol Sana boots for Winter and Sol Sana leather slides for Summer of course. You can’t go past a great handbag, I have the Celine Trapeze at the moment but I have my eye on the Chloe Faye for my next purchase! In love! I’m also a fan of oversized chunky knits, as there is no better feeling than being cosy!
With so many international stockists, Sol Sana has grown significantly since its creation in 2011. What’s next for Sol Sana?
World domination ha ha! But seriously, we want to further expand into the Asian, Scandinavian and South American markets. We also have some really exciting collaborations in the pipe line – watch this space!
What’s your party trick?
More of a party faux pas… I have a tendency to unknowingly dance like Elaine (from Seinfeld).
What one thing do you wish was healthier than it is?
Favourite city in the world?
Paris! Do I need to explain?