‘The name just popped into our heads out of blue one day, no other options were even considered. It’s short, easy to pronounce in every language and we like the sound of it!’
Yulia Pashevkina is explaining how she and sister Elena decided what to call their forward-thinking Mayfair accessories store - Box Boutique, which counts Kelis and Prince among its customers. But if their attitude to naming rights is cavalier, the pair take choosing what to stock in it very seriously.
‘We wanted to create a fun, cool environment for those craving new and exclusive designers. So we came up with the idea of uniting some of the most talented upcoming shoe and accessory designers under one roof’ explains Yulia. ‘In the beginning we’d research on the internet, through fashion magazines and word of mouth. Now there’s Instagram, Twitter and a vast amount of blogs where you can come across the most talented names.’
Located on London’s Maddox Street, the boutique is strategically placed to capture both the quirky vibe of Soho and the decadent sophistication of Mayfair, with the neon meets baroque interior a mixture of bespoke and flea-market finds. And ‘you can never go wrong with a blue-sky ceiling in a country where it rains eleven months of the year!’ points out Yulia.
The Box Boutique are currently celebrating their second birthday, and since opening, have introduced a number of labels to the UK style scene. ‘In fashion you have to take risks - luckily for us they have paid off so far’ says Yulia. With that in mind, we decided to ask for some of her expertise on statement sneakers and insider label footwear– two of Box Boutique’s specialties, which in the past two years have become absolute staples in every footwear wardrobe. Here’s what she had to say…
Sneakers are no longer just for sport. Interesting materials and embellishments have turned them into a serious fashion item, and the easiest way of achieving laid-back luxe. ‘When we started introducing sneakers into the store we were amazed -they were selling out like hot pies. Now we have sneakers in every single material possible, from glitter to alligator!’ says Yulia.
‘Nowadays, we’re more inclined to incorporate leather in our wardrobes, and sneakers look very cool with leather pants. Modern women are always on the run, and what better shoes to wear than sneakers? Personally, my favourites have to be Ruthie Davis and Giacomorelli. Their styles are very fashion-forward and at the same time very comfortable.’
The right pair of shoes by an upcoming, little-known designer can give you serious style kudos and provide real talking point. ‘We only stock cool, unusual, niche brands’ says Yulia, ‘We believe that it’s important for us to grow with our labels, and we’ve noticed that some of them are becoming legitimate must-haves, which is amazing!’
Most notable is Ruthie Davis, one of the store’s first designers, and one who counts Lady Gaga and Beyonce as avid fans, ‘We adore her creations, and her use of different coloured soles, which she changes every season according to the colour of the nail polish she wears while designing the collection.’?
And Yulia’s other tips? ‘Bionda Castana is feminine, yet powerful at the same time. Aruna Seth, whose fairy-like designs have been worn during Royal wedding celebrations, and Alejandro Ingelmo does really amazing sneakers with glow in the dark soles and light reflectors. Plus seriously unusual pieces like Chrissie Morris’ sting-ray sandals.’
SHOP BOX WOMEN