A shoe & Accessory brand founded & created in the Rennaissance city.
I always love discovering new fashion brands and so you can imagine my delight when I was recently introduced to a beautiful new Florentine brand called PAVóNE FIRENZE. Founded in 2019 by Creative Directors Angela Testani and Massimo Brilli, PAVóNE FIRENZE is a women’s shoe and accessory collection, designed and created in Florence.
This summer I’ll be looking extra stylish as I’m now the fortunate owner of their stunningly elegant Demi Tassel Florentine sandals, made from the highest quality woven raffia and trimmed with their signature gold tassels. I have also been wearing the Iris Double Pendant Necklace daily, and I swear, I am asked constantly where it’s from. What I personally love about this collection is the timeless elegance of each piece – that you can wear them with a basic t-shirt and jeans and instantly elevate your outfit to an understated, luxury style.
Each piece is handcrafted using traditional techniques and each and every distinctive detail is thoughtfully constructed to create newness that is deeply rooted in the Florentine heritage of its founders.
Angela Testani was born and raised in New York City and studied Fashion Design at The Fashion Institute of Technology in NY. After graduating she started working as a footwear designer, travelling to Florence every month to oversee the production. She knew on her very first trip to Florence that this was the city where she wanted to live. Her dreams came true and she eventually moved to Florence in 1997 while working for US companies that were producing shoes in Tuscany.
Massimo was born in the Etruscan city of Cortona, where both his parents and ancestors are from. Soon after his family moved to Arezzo, starting a shoe factory in the late ’60s.
Massimo on the other hand was in medical school and when his father passed away, he decided to enter in the family business. He quickly became fascinated with the technical aspects of footwear making. After closing the family factory years later, he continued working for some of the most prominent luxury footwear brands in Italy as a pattern maker and product developer.
It seems like true destiny with a little intervention from Cupid that brought Angela and Massimo together. They first met while both working for an American company with offices in Florence in 2009, when Angela actually interviewed Massimo. It was love at first sight and so later, in 2013 when Massimo started a consulting company, Angela didn’t wait too long before joining him too. Together they have worked on collections for some of the most talked-about labels in the footwear industry such as Gabriela Hearst, Tabitha Simmons, Sies Marjan, Rodarte, Rosetta Getty among others!
It’s always fascinating to find out the story behind a brand and so I decided to ask Angela and Massimo a few questions as was curious to know a bit more about how they & PAVóNE FIRENZE came to be.
1. “Designed & Created in Florence “ ……… where are the shoes manufactured?
All of our shoes are made in Tuscany, small towns close to Florence. This is extremely important for us because it means that we can constantly be the factories and suppliers, paying close attention to every detail of every shoe. FYI… We are control freaks!!!
2. Why the name Pavone?
We chose the brand name PAVóNE FIRENZE because the Pavone or Peacock represents resurrection, renewal and immortality…and eternal beauty. Very similar to what Florence means to us. We wanted to create a collection of footwear that represents a new way of approaching fashion… that is not about trends but timeless. We wanted to educate the consumer of our passion and our roots.. to take time to admire what has been created and the craftsmanship.
3. I love the logo, colour palette, packaging – did you create that together?
Yes, every aspect of the design is mutually created by us. We have similar tastes, but yet each one always brings something different to the table!
4. Did the shoes come before or after the jewellery? Is the jewellery also made locally?
We started the shoe collection first and immediately introduced the metal tassels and the ankle bracelet. After the first season, we expanded our chain and tassel theme into necklaces and bracelets… all the while playing with random anklets that we had laying around in our studio. All the jewellery is made in Arezzo… the city of gold!
5. What was the first season that the brand launched?
PAVóNE FIRENZE launched the first presentation for Spring Summer 2020. We decided to present to the North American market, but the season after for FALL 20 we started to present globally and must say that the response has been super positive.
6. Any plans to show at Pitti here in Florence?
This year we are working with a rep based in the US that is selling worldwide, but as soon as things start to pick up again we would love to present at Pitti as well!
9. Inspiration behind the collection / styles and colour palette?
The shoes we design are all trimmed with a special grosgrain binding that is generally in a contrasting colour. This trim is really the essence of our collection … incorporating it to the uppers and even the outsoles. Although it looks like a simple trim, it takes expert hands .. and we are fortunate to work with artisans that carry old shoemaking traditions. Our styles are quietly imagined as an expression of the person that wears them. We like to think that the women that buy PAVóNE FIRENZE have a strong appreciation for art and an eclectic style… THE BEAUTY RENAISSANCE we like to call it!
10. What do you both love about Florence & Tuscany?
We are forever grateful to be living in one of the most stunning cities in the world …even better the entire region of Tuscany is so incredible! Where else can you live in a city surrounded by eternal beauty and be so close to the seaside… mountains and best countryside !
11. Where do you love to holiday?
We generally travel quite a bit for work but, whenever we can we spend weekends by the seaside on the Argentario coast, where Massimo often goes kitesurfing
12. Favourite drink?
We go from Champagne to Americano’s!!
13. Favourite Florence restaurants?
Il Verrocchio at Villa la Massa .. amazing food, amazing staff … and very special to us as we got married there.
Also… this summer, every Wednesday night the L’Oliveto Summer Lounge for gourmet pizza and drinks.
Podere 39 in Porta Romana is our favourite local restaurant!
“PAVóNE FIRENZE continues to evolve every season. Their love for creating and dreaming PAVóNE FIRENZE surpasses their combined decades-long experience in the shoe and accessory world and will continue to spark and encourage each collection.”