Tanya Heath Footwear – Where Form Meets Function

Shoes at the Boutique photo by FS
Shoes at the Boutique photo by FS

Typically scrutinized for its artistic or utilitarian value, high fashion is a form of non-verbal communication with an emphasis on form. Tanya Heath, a transformative footwear line, revolutionizes this stigma. With over 50 styles of boots, pumps and sandals, alongside hundreds of heels, Tanya Heath supplies the palette to the innovative woman. Painter, musician and muse, she interminably qualifies the nature of her steps without ever having to forego comfort or versatility. 

Gail Russo-Larsson, Director of Business Development at the Beverly Hills boutique notes: “A woman must create the shoes for her life, and not for her closet. She must take the form and adapt it to her life.” I met her at last week’s event, co-hosted by Tanya Heath and AELLA in celebration of National Business Women’s Day. Designed by women for women, both brands epitomize the many transitions endured by the modern lady.  

Impressionism emerged as an attempt to give an impression rather than a realistic rendering of something. Monet and Van Gogh captured the appearances of people and places, while injecting their own sensitivities through exaggerated colors or tone. This reserved, tamer movement segued into the expressionist’s extension of himself through the brushstroke. Pollock and Franz Marc expression of angst and vivid emotional reactions shone through the “No.5 1948” or “Fighting.”  

Art history hereby displays the inevitable paradigm shift—from form to function.

As Gail notes: “Fashion is usually a slave to form that neglects function, and fails to address how a woman lives. Tanya Heath luxury brand has sought to incorporate function without compromising form.” It is no wonder architect Frank Lloyd Wright revised the touchstone phrase “form follows function” to say “form and function are one.” Similarly, fashion designers most often quote Picasso, Mondrian, Rothko and Matisse, whose visually captivating works operate within a very limiting medium.  

Wearing the shoe photo by FS
Wearing the shoe photo by FS

Tanya Heath’s unique convergence of form and function is, hereby, revolutionary to the world of high fashion, whose limited options narrowly dictate form. Tanya developed the idea as a professional woman living in Paris, where fashion and form are crucial. Operating within the seemingly fixed paradigm, the idea stemmed from the frustration of having to undergo surgery for spanning her three pregnancies and career. 

Made in Nantes, outside of Paris, the brand employs the highest standards for animal, environmental and manufacturing treatments applied to the highest quality French and Italian leathers processes. Comfortable, non-slippery and durable, all shoes possess leather soles and thin rubber outer sole. Soft, breathable goatskin sheaths memory foam on each shoe’s interior.  

Further anchoring the fusion of form and function are the brand’s unspoken ‘signature platform’. Outlined by a muted gold or silver lining, it houses the mechanism for heel changeability. Ingeniously engineered, you simply press the inside button and slide off the heel. According to Gail, test groups overwhelmingly show that people prefer the shoe with this piping and platform for its visual appeal: “Function shouldn’t be left out of the equation, as it denotes health, comfort and versatility, so that you can do what you like with your shoe.”  

There are four styles of heels: Christophe Walking, the Denis Cuban/ Bootmaker,

Francois Stiletto, and the Stephane Kitten, ranging from 1.5”-3.5” heights, and 28-60 iterations of color and design. They comprise either the prêt a porter ‘color’ collection, which includes metallics and some 50 colors, or the couture one, whose items are wrapped and embellished with cut leather, glitter, or Swarovski crystal. 

Are you marrying an athlete, feeling nationalistic, or simply plan on traveling the world for a few months? If so, your feet must beautifully collide with each step. 

For information on Tanya Heath the founder and designer as well as on the LA owner please see www.tanyaheath-la.com, as well as the Paris website www.tanyaheath.com.


Article Written & with Photos by Farrah Sarafa and other photos compliments of Tanya Heath


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