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An Emerging Talent Who’s Bringing the Bling to Your Classic Oxfords

There’s a lot to be said for the classics, but classics with a touch of statement-making chutzpah? Meet Coliac, an Italian shoe brand that specializes in oxfords every bit as chic as your staple pairs, but strewn with a veritable treasure chest’s worth of pearls and gems. The architect behind the brand is Martina Grasselli, who cut her teeth at Stella McCartney, Jean Paul Gaultier, and Christian Louboutin. Debuting back in 2009 as a jewelry line, Coliac (the surname of Grasselli’s French grandmother) has since shifted its focus to footwear, to winning results. “Before, [it] was a bijoux brand only, but I decided to broaden my perspective and embrace the whole world of accessories,” Grasselli tells “My shoes are like white canvases—installing jewels on them came naturally to me, and this is now one of the most important aspects of my brand. Details are fundamental.” The designer counts Art Deco, Russian Constructivism, and the Bauhaus among her inspirations. If those things aren’t immediately evident in Grasselli’s fabulous, lushly adorned styles, the eclecticism of that list is: trompe l’oeil details, crystals, pearls, or held closed with gold bars where laces would typically go. Pairs come at every level of embellishment, from allover jewels to styles whose charms sing more quietly, like black lace-ups with a simple piercing through the toe. Whichever you choose, you’ll be sure to make a statement.

Shop Coliac shoes at Avenue 32 and Luisa Via Roma.

—Kristin Anderson,

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