Designer Beate Karlsson turned the shape of a hand into a pair of viral shoes
We speak to the Swedish New York-based designer on The Bloody Feet shoes that broke the internet.
2 Jul 2021

Karlsson currently designs for Pyer Moss, is in charge of the creative direction for Italian-based Swedish brand AVAVAV, and directing her own or collaborative art and design projects.

— As a designer I feel like my biggest task is to provide a new or somehow better perspective, therefore I try to move away from my associations to create something noteworthy. This being said, it’s definitely not where I always end up, but I want to keep striving for otherness since I think it creates the most interesting work. 

This spring, her spectacular shoes, designed for AVAVAV, were featured by leading media outlets all over the world.

— The Bloody Feet boots are an extension of The Claws, Karlsson tells, an enlarged hand shoe I made a few years ago. Disfiguring shapes, in this case the shape of a hand, to disrupt our associations of the original source inspires me. We made the first few pairs in house and they were all sold out, and are now looking into a small production of the boots.

She’s soon also teaming up with her friend, Ellen Sheidlin, on a collaboration project.

— I’m not driven by seasonal fashion or other norms of the industry; instead I have merged the practice of an artist and a designer. I work as an independent designer brand with the main purpose to collaborate with anyone who shares my vision on both creative limitlessness and taking social responsibility, Karlsson concludes.