In 2009 Martina Grasselli started Coliac, a funky, jewel embellished line of dazzling footwear, primarily in the haute traditional style of broques. The Coliac brand, whose name is borrowed from Martina’s grandmother’s french noble surname, has become a hit thanks to a very particular and innovative design technique known as skin piercing.
Yes, Coliac’s fresh new footwear aesthetic (made in leather and faux leather materials) is based on an ancient ritual where skin is gathered, pierced and anchored by precious metals. Skin piercings first made an appearance in the Western world in Spain in the late century, it became a popular form of expression again in the 90s and Grasselli has ingeniously applied the cult-ish treatment to her shoes.
In 2016 the striking works prompted The Blonde Salad to do a collaboration with Grasselli. And Vogue Italia’s late Editor Franca Sozzani also took a keen interest in the emerging designer along with her sister Carla Sozzani who stocks Coliac shoes in the famed Corso Como 10 location in Milan’s coveted shopping district.
To get inside the mind of this edgy designer I grabbed 5 minutes to ask about the new collection, the new inspiration and rumors of a ready-to-wear line!
What is the color story behind the Fall 2017 collection?
The Coliac colors vary with black and yellow being the primary colors, but green, cyclamen, grey, navy blue, and burgundy feature in the collection as well. And then we always play with metallic looks in gold, silver and ruthenium.
This also extends to our new ready-to-wear line. I don’t want to be known only as a brand of shoes. Many people have wanted us to offer a line and now we’ve started the expansion with a capsule collection.
Which piece this season pushed the envelope in innovation and design?
I think the collection itself is an innovative theme. The cylinder disc most often used to stretch the earlobe was my inspiration and the design element for different models of shoes.
What’s on your nightstand? (What do you read, eat, drink or do before bed?)
On my night table there are horoscope books and novels, my mobile phone and a ‘good luck charm’ water that I bought in Bali which I spray every night like a superstitious rite.