De Gournay collaborates with Chinese designer Bing Xu for shoe collection

British luxury wallpaper maker de Gournay has unveiled its latest footwear collaboration with Chinese designer Bing Xu, a collection of bright and playful loafers and slippers adorned with signature motifs often seen on the walls of exclusive members' clubs or stately homes across the UK.

Xu, a Shanghai-based designer who often appears on the global social calendar, founded his eponymous shoe store in 2013. Known for slippers and loafers with playful motifs – seen on model Liu Wen, actress Zhang Ziyi and artist Michael Armitage – the brand has since expanded its offerings to handbags and ready-to-wear. He was also formerly chief shoe designer at Shanghai Tang.

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Most recently, he designed a pair of embroidered slippers in the style of traditional Chinese ballerina flats for Norwegian billionaire and salmon heir Gustav Magnar Witzøe, to match his Atelier Versace-designed look on the Met Gala red carpet.

For this collaboration, Xu translated de Gournay's Chinoiserie wallpaper pattern 'Badminton' – used in the tea rooms of Harrods in Shanghai – and the playful and eclectic Deco Monkeys – the same ones seen in Robin Birley's 5 Hertford Street – into his signature Belgian loafers, Bloomsbury mules and a new shape called the 'Highgrove slipper'.

Hannah Cecil-Gurney, director of de Gournay, said the collaboration represents a combination of the traditional elements of Chinese wallpaper with the modern lifestyle of customers, “who still value the culture of our craftsmanship.”

Bing Xu (left) with friends in styles from the de Gournay x Bing Xu shoe collectionBing Xu (left) with friends in styles from the de Gournay x Bing Xu shoe collection

Bing Xu, left, with friends in styles from the de Gournay x Bing Xu shoe collection.

The collaboration also marks Bing Xu's first foray into the UK market, as the company also launched a London-based e-commerce site offering seasonal styles and bespoke service options.

“Now customers can order customized shoes directly from our Shanghai studio. We are excited to bring our brand, which is deeply rooted in Chinese culture, to discerning customers worldwide,” said Xu.

The project is designed to increase de Gournay's visibility in China, one of the company's key emerging markets. The company is closely linked to some of interior designer André Fu's ongoing projects there, including St. Regis Shenzhen.

The company has also worked on several landmark hotel projects, including Rosewood Guangzhou, Andaz Shenzhen and Indigo Guangzhou.

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