Talent Story – U

The story of Dots Dash ..- U is a little different, though as with our Talents, it came around in part through chance and luck, with many surprises along the way. Sometimes, the initial idea is vivid, at others opaque. Serendipity was a mixture of the two. When we finished it, we knew we had something we’d be proud to present our followers, something which also reflected a key part of our philosophy: to find joy in exploration and discovery.

At Dots Dash, it is important to grant our Talents full freedom in bringing their ideas to life. We provide only general guidelines, removing ourselves entirely from the decision making and design process. With Serendipity, the roles were reversed, as we became the Talent, involved at every level.

It was on a trip to the Andalusian valleys where the wheels were first set in motion for Serendipity. Amidst the glimmer of a sultry afternoon, we met designer Señor Manuel, at his studio. His passion was as fierce as the heat outside. He talked about the craft of shoemaking in depth and with fervour, discussing everything from stitching to high quality materials. Despite our own experience, we were taken about by his insights and techniques.

Most of our talents have found inspiration in the world around them. In our case, it was from looking down. Whilst taking a short coffee break at Senor Manuel’s studio, we began discussing Oxford shoes, after realising that most people in the room were wearing them. Manuel’s were over three years old. We were astounded. They looked box-fresh. We knew then that we wanted to create a shoe which matched the Oxford’s high quality, while giving it an elegant twist.

And so we set to work, inviting our collaborating designer Eleanor and Señor Manuel to sit down with us and discuss ideas. Eleanor is an award-winning, footwear, accessories and graphics designer, with a first class BA (Hons) from De Monfort University in Footwear Design. An innovative and independent designer, she is both creative and practical, with a firm understanding of trends and the industry at large.

For us it was important to team up with a designer who shared our philosophy, and Eleanor fitted this criteria. We began working on ideas. Intent on doing something new, we soon realised our twist was right before our eyes. Our shoe had come about by chance, or at least it seemed that way. The serendipity we found had come about because of a passion for footwear.

Had we not all shared this love, we would not have been in the studio that afternoon, and not have come up with the idea of designing such a shoe. As we worked, Señor Manuel provided recommendations on quality standards, sharing his years of experience with us. We hit the road again, in order to find the best materials, all the while communicating with Eleanor in order to craft something truly special.

Serendipity was a unique experience. We are privileged to have worked with a number of talented people, including our manufacturer, collaborating designer and the many friends who took part in brainstorming sessions as we sought the shoe which would reflect the story of discovery we had been part of.