This week Somerset House is home to an exhibition from an impressive line up of designers and fashionistas – Manolo Blahnik, Alice Temperley, Aquazzura, and Naomi Campbell to name a few.
They have each redesigned the iconic Havaianas flip flop. The brief? To show ‘love, kindness, vision, support or hope’ and raise awareness for Women for Women International, a charity that supports females suffering in war stricken countries.
The exhibition showcases 12 unique takes on the classic flip flop design across three rooms. Gold platforms from Charlotte Olympia, Grecian goddess flip flops from Aquazzura and a grey marble pair from Nicolas Kirkwood. Across the walls, personal quotes from the designers echo the necessity of supporting one another globally.
Manolo Blahnik’s quote reads: “Without women I would be nowhere, great and powerful women are what inspire me to do what I do and to keep going. It’s an honour to have been involved in this exciting collaboration and to support such an extraordinary cause!”
The exhibition was curated by Maria Kastani, Havaianas’ PR guru, who says:
“I met with a spokeswomen of Women for Women International and when she explained her work, it touched my heart and I thought – I couldn’t sit back and not do anything.
“So last December I got in contact with my dear friends [designers] and asked them to donate their time and create something of hope and empowerment and I’m so happy with the results!”
Each of the designs are being auctioned to raise raise funds for Women for Women International. Since 1993, the charity has supported almost 450,000 women all over the world, from Afghanistan to Kosovo – many of who were raped, tortured, left homeless or ostracised by their community after devastation hit their neighbourhood.
Women for Women International offers the courageous women a year-long course where they are taught their rights, plus vocational and business skills in an effort to help them reclaim back their lives.
See the designs from the 15th -22nd of July at Somerset House’s River Room with free entry.
Note: BICBIM does not endorse Havaianas as an ethical brand. We have requested information about their employment policies, but at time of publishing have not received this.
We have not researched any of the designers’ supply chains.
Words: Gabrielle Kynoch