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Sunroom Q+A: Emme Parsons


We're excited to share a conversation with shoe designer Emme Parsons today — Emme's eponymous line has made waves for creating completely perfect, ultra-light interpretations of classic silhouettes...the go-to, utterly timeless (yet refreshingly unique!) shoes you wear everywhere, with everything, amid every season. We're excited to share our interview with Emme herself, below... 

You have a background in graphic design. What inspired you to transition from working in the digital realm to a physical one? And how does your knowledge of digital design inform the way you approach designing and producing your collections?

It was a dream of mine to have a line of sandals and I decided to go for it after moving from NY to LA and taking some time off work to spend with my son when he was born. I really love how all design disciplines inform and inspire each other and constantly refer back to the basic design principles including proportion, repetition and harmony when designing each shoe.

Emme Parsons is positioned as an ‘American Coastal brand grounded in European historicism.' Can you share a bit more about the history and traditions that inspire your collections?

In November, I moved to Palm Beach, Florida but my team remains spread across LA, NY and Italy. So we have this American coastal element based on our geography and then this sense of European history as all of our shoes are made in Italy.

The first time I went to Italy for work I was so amazed how much of the shoe making process has not changed in decades. We are also deeply inspired by Italian classicism. Florence, where several of our suppliers are based, is considered the cradle of the Renaissance and I think there’s a unique attitude and appreciation for history and beauty woven into the DNA of the city and surrounding area.

Many of your pieces seem to be named after women, such as Susan, Diana, etc. Do the names act as symbols or are they a nod to influential women, friends, or family?

It’s really a mix of friends, acquaintances, and people who have helped the business grow. We’re actually planning to do a bit more storytelling about the women who inspired some of the styles in the months to come to give them a spotlight.

Do you think of each of your collections as being imbued with a story? If so, can you please share a personal favorite?

Coming from a graphic design background, I’ve always had a solution based approach to design. Each collection is a continuation of the previous one. We’re always thinking about any gaps in the overall collection that a modern woman might want or need for her wardrobe. My personal favorite collection to date is Fall 20 as it included the launch of our first boot, the Julien. It’s exciting to evolve the line beyond sandals and expand into other footwear categories.

What is inspiring you now — any hints of future designs or projects you can share?

Moving to Florida has been influencing and inspiring future collections. Everything feels so lush and tropical and people definitely wear more pastel and bright colors here than they do in LA or NY. We’re excited to introduce bits of color here and there after several seasons of neutrals.
+ Quick Fire!

What are some small things you're doing right now to take care of yourself (mentally, physically, and/or emotionally)? I make sure to get outside and move my body everyday whether it’s stretching, yoga, running or just walk around the block.

My creative/design ethos in three words: Refined, minimal, thoughtful

I always start my day with: My five year old son jumping into my bed.

Song or musician I’m loving right now: Moondog Moondog 2

The thing I find myself recommending over and over again: I’ve been making this cucumber gazpacho a lot lately. It’s a really quick and easy work from home lunch and perfect for warmer weather. 

Shop Emme Parsons at Sunroom.