The luxury shoemakers of Milan-based Loriblu have come up with a design that’s totally lit—literally. The Selene model is an exclusive high-heel pump that glows in the dark (and you can always turn it off if you’re not in the mood to illuminate).
Loriblu holds an international patent covering optical fiber applied to the shoes, which are named for the Greek goddess of the moon and star of the night, which appeared after the sunset as the only light in the darkness.
The pumps take dressing up a pair of jeans to a new level. The price tag is $3,500, and they’re available at select retailers, including San Francisco’s newest luxury shoe boutique, Sentiero at 11 Maiden Lane.
I was intrigued, so I connected via email with Graziano Cuccu, founder, president and chief designer of all Loriblu collections. Here’s what he had to say about his bright idea:
1. How did the idea for a light-up shoe come about?
“The idea was mine. I was inspired by the dress of Claire Danes by Zac Posen worn during the Met Gala 2016 in New York. I completely fell in love with and wanted to reproduce this magic on a shoe.”
2. How do they turn on and off?
“Light can turn off and on at will through a normal switch located on the insole. Even without light, the shoe is a perfect pump characterized by exceptional design and highest quality materials.”
3. What was the biggest technical challenge when creating this shoe?
“The optical fiber is hand-sewn on the shoe through an allover embroidery which is illuminated with a white light through a hidden mini battery. The biggest challenge for the designer team was to find a location to hide the battery and to handle the shoes without damaging the fiber optic that can be slightly bent, but not folded.”
4. Where is the battery located and how long will it last?
“The designers have created a space under the sole of the foot to keep the comfort for the woman who wears this pump completely unchanged. By the way, water doesn’t damage the optical fiber and the battery, once exhausted, can simply be replaced free of charge like a normal watch battery.”
5. Are they available for a limited time? If so how many will you make?
“Selene shoes are produced only upon request. For example, in San Francisco Loriblu is exclusively represented by the new Sentiero boutique that has just opened on 11 Maiden Lane. A customer can come into the store to make the order.”