Another side to Jimmy Choo

Another side to Jimmy Choo

SINGAPORE - With its advertising campaigns featuring tanned, leggy models with long tousled locks, wearing mini skirts and vertiginous strappy stilettos, "sexy" certainly comes to mind when one thinks of designer shoe brand Jimmy Choo.

So it comes as a surprise when Ms Sandra Choi, who was appointed sole creative director of the label earlier this year, says she plans to shed some of the brand's provocative image.

"There's the other side of Jimmy Choo; the girl with the attitude. That's the modern woman that I'm trying to unleash," says the 40-year-old, who was in town last month to speak at the International New York Times' luxury conference.

"Edgy" is a word Ms Choi, niece of the brand's founder Jimmy Choo, brings up a lot, both to describe herself and the new direction that she hopes to take the brand in.

"There's this slightly edgier side that I want to portray; I want to put a little bit of me in it," adds

Ms Choi, who is wearing a pair of leopard print strappy heels with leather pants and a silk blouse during the interview.

But she assures that she is not about to make any drastic changes.

"I don't want to turn everything black; that's not what I set out to do. Drastic, no. Evolution, yes," she says.

The British-born designer was appointed sole creative director in February, after her co-creative director Simon Holloway left the company to pursue other interests. They served together as co-creative directors for about two years.

Before that, the brand was run by entrepreneur Tamara Mellon, who co-founded it in 1996 with Choi's shoemaker uncle Jimmy Choo. Choo left the label in 2001 reportedly because of creative and business differences with Mellon. Mellon left in 2011 after it was acquired by private group Labelux for a reported £500 million (S$1 billion).

Ms Choi, who has worked with the brand since 1996 as its creative director, has wasted no time now that she is the only one calling the shots.

One of the first things she did was to change the brand's advertising concept.

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