"With my footwear brand 21.23 I therefore decided to focus on diversity. I like the idea that it is something different from the usual, a niche and refined product": Sara Baù 's interview with Chiara Bindoni.
Chiara Bindoni is a tenacious, creative girl with a unique style. At 23 he had to take over the reins of the family business, the Gran Galà by Clair fashion & dance shoe store and brand. And she had to do it quite suddenly, alone and in a difficult situation.
After two years, thanks to a lot of determination and self-confidence, she not only managed to carry on the company and make it known all over the world, but also to launch its 100% Italian footwear brand 21.23 . For the moment, the brand offers an exclusive range of beautiful loafers, all Made in Italy.
We had the pleasure of being able to ask Chiara a few questions, who told us about her journey and revealed many curiosities about 21.23, the difficulties of running a business and projects for the future. If you are curious about this amazing girl and her exclusive brand, read our interview.
Hello Chiara. Tell us a little about yourself, your path and where you arrived today.
I am 25 years old and for the past two years I have been involved in the development of the family business. It was a choice made urgently because, following a serious bereavement, I had to quickly take over the reins of the entire administration and throw myself completely into what I had already decided to do in the distant or near future. I have always worked in the fashion industry, always trying to highlight my personality because, especially in this world, I believe that every job well done is also due to one's own aesthetic taste.
How was your passion for fashion born?
Since I was little I have had a strong passion for fashion. I used to spend hours and hours in my closet trying to create outfits with what I found, even putting my hand in my mother's or grandmother's closet. I think that the fact that I was born in a family where we have always worked in this sector has influenced: my father had a shoe company, my uncles a clothing store. I have done nothing but live constantly surrounded by fashion and this has certainly influenced my path.
We love your style: how do you choose what to wear?I never plan how to dress, not even when I have events. The only thing I do is throw myself in the closet following both instinct and mood. I think that my state of mind plays a fundamental role in the choice of clothes and I think it is right as, in the end, I believe that the outfit is like a business card, an expression of who we are and, at least as far as it's about me, it represents 100% who I am.
Are you inspired by anyone in particular?
I'm not inspired by anyone in particular. I follow fashion a lot, fashion shows and street style in general. What I like I assimilate and I try to make it more suitable for me, both for my style and for my physicality. I like to know that I have my own style that is not plagiarized here and there, but eclectic, like me. I can certainly say that I like to mix vintage with modern style and constantly look for unique pieces to wear. Above all, I don't limit myself to having the same style every day because every day is different and, as already said before, for me an outfit is an expression of who I am and how I feel.
"21.23 stems from my constant need to create something that is completely mine, to best express my creativity."
You have recently launched your brand, 21.23: do you want to tell us about it?
This project stems from my constant need to create something that is completely mine, to best express my creativity. The origin of the name, on the other hand, I would like to remain in the shadows because more than the meaning, it is the content that counts. I care a lot about this project because it involves a lot of work on the part of the craftsmen involved in its realization and also for the constant search for the perfection of the product. I have always wanted to propose a completely Made in Italy item, because we often don't realize the good fortune of living in a country where the manufacturing sector is recognized as one of the first in the world.
Unfortunately, several companies that have to cope with a high market demand, produce their goods abroad, but it is nice to know that in small businesses like mine you can find the love and passion for a product completely packaged in Italy. . From the soles, to the materials, to the processing itself, made entirely by expert hands in the sector. This then gives the possibility of having a customizable shoe according to the customer's requests.
What were the difficulties you faced?
The difficulties, when running a business, are faced every day, especially when you want the product to be well cared for and have a certain quality. For example, the search for the right materials is as difficult as it is important, from fabrics for uppers to those for leathers that must be carefully chosen by virtue of the function they must have. Surely at the beginning the difficulties were greater, both for my age (I was 24) and for having had to face this research alone, but by imposing oneself and making one's intentions understood, everything becomes easier. It takes patience, determination and above all we must not be discouraged because many times it is not easy, but what matters is not to give up and go ahead with gritted teeth.
How did you come up with the idea of focusing on a particular type of shoe, namely the loafer?
The idea came to me because my father had created this type of footwear for the dance and seeing them I thought I would like to wear them, so I tried to make a pair. Once I saw it with the right shape and the fabrics I selected, I fell in love with it and decided to offer it to others as well. I like the idea that it's something different than usual. It is a niche and sought after product. I find it useless to focus on products that are commonly found on the market; I therefore decided to focus on diversity and for now I have had positive feedback.
"My father had created this type of footwear for the dance and, seeing them, I thought I would like to wear them, so I tried to make a pair. I thought about the shape, selected the fabrics and I fell in love with them. propose it to others. "
Do you plan to expand the product range of 21.23 in the future? Surely 21.23 was not born only as a footwear brand (of which the new winter products will be released in September), but it was born a bit as a way of expressing myself. The next expansion that will be made will concern sartorial clothing, also a project that I have been under construction for some time that is about to start. So stay connected because lots of news will come.
What do you hope for the future? I do not want to think about it. I'm building it piece by piece and I can only cross my fingers and hope everything goes well.
Click HERE to see all the proposed looks and read the interview on the FOXlife portal.