Rubens Bressanin on Rebooting Stephane Kélian

SHOE BUSINESS: “This is the first project where it’s me in the spotlight,” said Rubens Bressanin at a cocktail presentation of his first full collection as artistic director of rebooted French footwear brand Stephane Kélian on Tuesday night in a Paris gallery space. The Italian creative has worked as a freelance designer for 25 years and is based in a sprawling studio near Venice employing 47 designers and working with some 30 brands, including a number of major houses.
For Bressanin the gig comes at the time when the industry could do with some creative fizz. “It’s a tough time for the footwear industry, but for me this is an exciting opportunity. I travel a lot and what I see is a globalization of collections…so many of the brands are managed by two people: [Bernard] Arnault and [François-Henri] Pinault. They are doing a great job but they have the monopoly of fashion which leaves less and less space for independent designers,” said the designer.
“I’m friends with a lot of small independent designers and they are finding it more and more difficult to get into stores; for retailers to have all those big brands takes up a lot of the budget and they

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