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José Luis Bartolomé & Albert Escribano — Founders, HEREU
Friends & Partners
December 19, 2020

Crafted in Spain by local artisans, José Luis Bartolomé & Albert Escribano founded HEREU, a leather shoes and accessories brand as a homage to the eclectic energy and beauty of the Mediterranean. HEREU is known for their contemporary reworking of traditional styles all made from beautifully grained leather, aged hardware and textural detailing. Just in time for the brands latest summer drop, we had the chance to speak to José and Albert to discuss the roots of HEREU, how the brand has tackled 2020 and gained an insight into the kind of craftsmanship that goes into their products...

How did HEREU get its start?
HEREU started back in 2014, being SS15 the first season of the brand.
The project was created from a nostalgic desire of appreciation of our Spanish roots after many years immersed in the cultural mix of London and Paris.
 HEREU'' is a Catalan word that means ''heir'', a person who continues the work of a predecessor.
 What we intend to do is to continue the work of skilled leather artisans using their traditional techniques on modern and functional designs.

How do your Spanish roots inform the label?
Our collections spring from a patchwork of memories and images, both past and present, and reimagined for the future. Elements throughout the collections evoke strong feelings of the Mediterranean lifestyle.

Can you elaborate on the different processes HEREU uses in its production?

We work with many different processes and techniques, for example: we are very proud of our mocassin range, as they are made in the traditional way, having the sole turned up on all sides and hand sewn to the upper in a simple seam. Our espadrilles are built onto a hand assembled jute sole, and the upper is hand stitched as well as the toe reenforcement, just like they used to be made a 100 years ago.

The Mediterranean has long been the inspiration for some of the greatest visual artists of the last hundred years. We reimagine this legacy to create designs that evoke a nostalgia for Mediterranean Spain.

How would you define the language of HEREU? how do you communicate the brand's core values?
The language of HEREU is simple, fresh and relaxed but with also mature and timeless. We communicate our core values in a very transparent and simple way, we let our imagery and most of all, the product speak for itself.

What is HEREU doing to innovate?
We believe we offer a solution to an ethical consumerism as well as a fresher-yet-timeless and more affordable alternative to the luxury goods available from established brands.

How is HEREU committed to creating a better future, and utilising sustainable practises?
Our trade mark is actually 'HEREU crafted in Spain' so we insist in only making our goods in Spanish factories as part of the brand identity.
All HEREU pieces are handmade in the most conscious way, engaging not just local traditions but the individual hand of artisans crafting them locally in Spain, upholding and supporting artisanal techniques whilst reinterpreting them through our personal language.

Does the mediterranean inspire the brand? If so, how?
The Mediterranean has long been the inspiration for some of the greatest visual artists of the last hundred years. We reimagine this legacy to create designs that evoke a nostalgia for Mediterranean Spain. Being crafted in Spain, our work is physically rooted in the Mediterranean landscape and the individual hand of the artisan is always the starting point for every design. We reinterpret these artisanal traditions through a personal language influenced by the region’s distinct mix of high art, folk tradition and popular culture.

Our collections spring from a patchwork of memories and images, both past and present, and reimagined for the future. Elements throughout the collections evoke strong feelings of the Mediterranean lifestyle.

How’s the brands success measured?
5 years after launching the brand, we now wholesale to around 100 stockists across the globe, being Japan and the US our biggest markets.

2020 has been a tough year across the globe... how have the challenges this year impacted HEREU.
It has been indeed, especially the first half of the year.
We are very lucky to be able to say that overall, the 2020 has been a year of growth and success for us. The challenges have made us build stronger relantionships with both our stockists and suppliers.

What’s next for the brand?
We are working hard to consolidate the foundations of the brand, with the intention to add new product categories and expand that way our universe.

 

Shop the collection here

@hereu_

WORDS BY PETER BAIN
IMAGES COURTESY OF HEREU
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