Elisabetta Baume, affectionately called Betta, was born in Rome. She moved to New York in the 70s. In 1974 she met her beloved husband Andrea Carrano, one of the most sought-after shoe designers of the time. Side by side, they produced shoes that would drive all women crazy (included the iconic actress Audrey Hepburn). "Andrea Carrano" remains a solid brand with a beautiful store in New York's Upper East Side. Betta has recently launched a spectacular fashion line dedicated to women: BettaBaume.com, her new online collection. Betta Baume is made in Naples, one of the most enchanting Italian cities. Here, Betta personally designs and produces lovely shoes.
After many years working along with your husband, you decided to create BettaBaume.com. How did you come up with this idea, and why did you feel the need to do it?
I thought that my experience with Andrea Carrano had a specific look and style to maintain; with Betta Baume, I can be more creative and do anything. It doesn't constrict me; it's my pet, my own project.
In Rome, you lived la Dolce Vita; in New York, you lived the city's most exciting and creative years. If there was one thing you could pick from the past and bring it on these days for the new generations, what would it be?
From the past, I would take the passion of Rome and the vibe of New York in the 1980s. Nowadays, we don't have the same drive for passion. Think about Rome in the 1950s and 1960s, but also New York in the 1980s and 1990s! Back then, you could feel the same kind of energy. Today I can't find it in Rome nor New York.
Italian culture shaped the American way of life. As an Italian and an entrepreneur, which is the most significant Italian contribution to New York today?
Food, fashion, taste!
You run a beautiful boutique. Can you tell us the shoe trend for the next season?
For next Spring-Summer season, we will have sandals, flats, colorful and happy shoes. We are coming out from a very dark period; women need to feel feminine again; they need to live again. Fashion will have to reflect these new needs. However, since flats are comfortable, I have in mind to give a twist of colors. Always comfortable, though. Right now, women are rediscovering what comfort really means.
Which is your favorite dish, the one you like to cook for family and friends?
What I really like to cook for people that I love is fish. All kind of fish, cooked Italian style.
Is there, in your opinion, an Italian dish that Americans still don't know well?
Most of them! How we cook in Italy is not how and what you find in New York.
Which are the first things and flavors that you look for when you go back to Italy?
As soon as I land in Italy, pane e prosciutto e mozzarella.
If your favorite pair of shoes were a dish, what would it be?
Moccasins! I create soft and comfortable loafers like butter croissants.