Bay Area artist Windy Chien, known for her amazing knot designs and rope installations, and the cult-followed San Francisco clog company, Bryr, have teamed up for a limited edition summer shoe that is so cute we had to share! Breaking into shoes for the first time, Windy who designs everything from beautiful knotted jewelry to roped pendant lights, worked all spring to find the perfect knot to complete this special clog, which are all hand-made in the Dogpatch by Isobel Schofield, the founder of Bryr, and her team. We got to ask Windy about the collaboration that is gaining major buzz and the process behind designing knot-your-average clog!
24E: How did the collaboration with Bryr come about?
Windy Chien: I was already a fan of Bryr, but as soon as I met Isobel, and spent time in her workshop/store, and saw the way she speaks with her staff and customers, it became clear that our similarities are not just aesthetic. Isobel and I both have put in time with large corporate companies, and subsequently we have both intentionally chosen, in this phase of our lives and careers, to work slower and smaller so that the joy that drew us to the craft stays intact. I believe it makes the work that much more meaningful, and communicates our love of making to our customers.
24E: What was challenging about working with shoes?
WC: It was a good challenge. For any given situation, I have learned that there’ll be one knot that is right, while all the others are wrong, so I searched all spring for the right knot. It had to sit flat, hold together, and be pretty. A Four-Strand Button knot did the trick and its ‘legs’ form the fringe.
24E: What is your hope for the collection?
WC: Most of the clothing and accessories I wear are designed by women for women– independent lines who have intentionally chosen to work within their values– like Black Crane, Aliya Wanek, Rachel Comey, Maria Cornejo. By working with Isobel and Bryr, I’m doing similar, and I’d love to invite future collaborations. Because much of my work is large scale fine art installations, making something smaller and functional is a way for people who like my work to add it to their lives! This makes me really happy.
You can shop the limited edition clog on Bryr’s website here or in person at their Dogpatch store. The style is a 70’s inspired, veg-tan leather mule that features a four-strand, natural rope Button Knot created by Windy. The shoe is only available through summer so get your feet into them while you can!
Images c/o Annie Martin Photography