Èstro Lab is an extremely flexible footwear design studio: companies all have different requirements, and our flexibility allows us to work with footwear manufacturers who trust us to provide targeted consulting associated with any given aspect of their business.
We start every project by putting together moodboards, resulting from both market research in the footwear sector, and – on a wider level – more in general from inspiration.
We analyse current trends to inform clients about the products most in demand, the most successful brands, selecting the most fashionable colours and trendy materials.
We achieve all this by travelling across Europe and overseas, taking part in trade exhibitions, looking up products online, via social media, referring to fashion forecasting libraries and reports.
Our favourite destinations: trips to New York, short stays in Los Angeles, are enlightening and strongly inspirational to meet requests from customers interested in expanding their range of products in the area of sportswear. We nourish our creativity by delving into the homeland of the streetwear style, from its most metropolitan version of hip hop culture, to the more casual approach of surfers in California, leading to scouting up-and-coming footwear designers.
The extremely stylish shopping malls in Melrose Avenue, outstanding examples of interior design, the brightly coloured graffiti, the green of gardens hosting elegant restaurants or framing the shop-windows of stylish boutiques, vintage shopping, the sunsets and lights in Santa Monica: stimulating environments where it is easy to capture images, suggestions, novelties, and to receive confirmations.
London, on the other hand, is still the city par excellence when we are looking for the trends most closely associated with the urban world, inspired by street fashion trends.
In the British capital we are charmed by the customised fashion which mixes tradition and current trends, expressing the personality of those who choose to wear it.
Cool looks and environments, trendy neighbourhoods, a mash-up of creative inputs which never disappoint our expectations and always provide us with positive energy to start and design our new collections.
Our process: after we have breathed and “absorbed” the mood of the season, we then rationalise the information collected, finally move on to the more concrete phase of our footwear design project.
We focus on technical design based on the search for materials (fabrics and hides), components (soles, welts, plastic and metal accessories, tapes) and processing (piercing, weaving, applications of studs, stones and prints).
Colour palettes and cuttings of materials, physical items or photos of samples (soles or accessories, etc.), plus suggestions with regard to suppliers, usually accompany our search for images.
Clients often ask us to expand our offer and to focus on modelling themes to develop footwear models, through graphic projects and design of customised uppers (for both fashion and casual footwear); in this case we study in depth also possible combinations and matching of materials.