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Kansas City Fashion Week — Spring/Summer 2020 Collections

Kansas City Fashion Week is a nexus of fashion professionals. Featuring local, national and international designers, each year KCFW produces two full weeks of premier runway shows, enabling designers to collaborate with seasoned stylists, make-up artists, models and photographers to present their collections in the most professional atmosphere imaginable.

 

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Hill's Glory Gold designs shoes for the 'boardroom to the red carpet'

Tanise Hill’s affinity for shoes started at a young age. By her teens, she’d decided to become a shoe designer.She likes how a pair of shoes can change the tone of an outfit and create an extra boost of confidence.

Glory Gold, her Lee’s Summit-based premium designer shoes company, features “charming classics” that easily transition from the boardroom to the red carpet, she said.

“At the heart of the brand DNA is elegance and sophistication,” Hill said.

Hill’s venture into the fashion world is partly inspired by her mother, who previously designed apparel for a coat company and regularly sewed Easter and other holiday dresses for her daughters. She later became a home economics teacher, and Hill and her sister would model outfits for her school fashion shows.

Grad is the Creative Director and Entrepreneur Behind Glory Gold Shoes

Born and raised in St. Louis, Missouri, Tanise Hill fell in love with shoes at an early age. She studied Fashion Design and Footwear Design & Development at FIDM, graduating in 2004, and joined Restricted Footwear the following year. After a successful seven-year career at the LA-based shoe brand, Tanise decided to launch her own premium designer label, Glory Gold, in 2013. Crafted from the finest leathers, each pair of Glory Gold shoes are made with breathable memory foam for comfort and support. We recently caught up with Tanise, who is currently based in Lee’s Summit, Missouri, to learn more about her story.
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Glory Gold We Are Local
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If the shoe fits: Glory Gold founder opens first store in OP

Tanise Hill stands inside her new Glory Gold store at Oak Park Mall. GLORY GOLD

With an eye toward growth, Tanise Hill opened her first storefront at Oak Park Mall in Overland Park.

Hill founded Lee’s Summit-based Glory Gold in 2013. It’s a premium designer shoe company that previously relied on website traffic and trade shows to promote its shoes. As the pandemic whittled trade shows and other in-person events, however, Hill re-evaluated her business strategy. Those events might look different moving forward, or they might not return for a while, she said.

Glory Gold We Are Local

Glory Gold: Tanise Hill

“I’ve always wanted to be a shoe designer, ever since I was a teenager. I went to school at the fashion institute of design and merchandising in Los Angeles. I studied fashion but more specifically footwear design. I worked for a small business right out of college designing shoes. I knew early on that I want to eventually own my own business and I wanted to be in charge of my creations.”Glory Gold has participated in many shows around the Kansas City area. The first show they did was in 2015 at the holiday boutique here in Overland Park, KS. They saw the potential and continued to do more shows. Their styles have been frequently featured with top publications and media outlets including In Style, Glamour, O Magazine, People, the Today Show and Good Morning America. What sets Glory Gold apart from any other shoe retailer is that they design their shoes with 100% leather, full padding, and arch support. They also offer custom shoe designs for special events and occasions.
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Kansas City Fashion Week — Spring/Summer 2020 Collections

Kansas City Fashion Week is a nexus of fashion professionals. Featuring local, national and international designers, each year KCFW produces two full weeks of premier runway shows, enabling designers to collaborate with seasoned stylists, make-up artists, models and photographers to present their collections in the most professional atmosphere imaginable.

Buyers and individual consumers are provided an opportunity to order apparel and accessories shown on the runway and KCFW provides industry professionals an avenue to showcase their abilities to a national audience.

With an unapologetic focus on the business side of the fashion industry, each KCFW event highlights the many facets of fashion commerce. Buyers from retail establishments, media personalities, online apparel entrepreneurs and celebrities help to comprise an audience for each show, making the 16th KCFW a must-attend event for established and emerging fashion professionals.

Hill's Glory Gold designs shoes for the 'boardroom to the red carpet'

Tanise Hill’s affinity for shoes started at a young age. By her teens, she’d decided to become a shoe designer.

She likes how a pair of shoes can change the tone of an outfit and create an extra boost of confidence.

Glory Gold, her Lee’s Summit-based premium designer shoes company, features “charming classics” that easily transition from the boardroom to the red carpet, she said.

“At the heart of the brand DNA is elegance and sophistication,” Hill said.

Hill’s venture into the fashion world is partly inspired by her mother, who previously designed apparel for a coat company and regularly sewed Easter and other holiday dresses for her daughters. She later became a home economics teacher, and Hill and her sister would model outfits for her school fashion shows.

Hill earned a degree in fashion design and footwear design from the Fashion Institute of Design & Merchandising in Los Angeles, and her first job after graduation was assistant designer at California-based Restricted Footwear. She soon worked her way up to senior designer, creating styles in the juniors category for teens and college-age consumers. Her role also included trips to places such as Paris, London and Spain to study street fashion and research new trends.

“It was definitely inspiring, because it all led up to building my perspective for the brand that I wanted to build now, and the shoes I ultimately want to design,” Hill said.

Through those experiences, she matured as a designer and no longer wanted to be confined to the juniors category and current trends: “There is power in being timeless and classic,” she said.

Hill launched Glory Gold in 2013 and started targeting consumers directly in 2015. The name aims to inspire others to succeed.

“When you give all of your glory, you will achieve the gold,” she said.

To create a local following, Hill has attended area events and conventions. Not only do the events build brand awareness, they’re an opportunity to glean customer feedback. Not everyone can wear a four-inch heel, and those customer conversations spurred Hill to launch two-inch versions.

“It’s been an invaluable experience to have that opportunity to be so close with the customers,” she said.

For design inspiration, Hill also takes note of new colors and prints in the leather market and current street fashion.

“I can’t go anywhere without looking at people’s feet. It’s an occupational hazard,” she said. “I try to get inspired by what people are wearing and I try to get inspired by what’s missing. What am I not seeing?”

Grad is the Creative Director and Entrepreneur Behind Glory Gold Shoes

Born and raised in St. Louis, Missouri, Tanise Hill fell in love with shoes at an early age. She studied Fashion Design and Footwear Design & Development at FIDM, graduating in 2004, and joined Restricted Footwear the following year. After a successful seven-year career at the LA-based shoe brand, Tanise decided to launch her own premium designer label, Glory Gold, in 2013. Crafted from the finest leathers, each pair of Glory Gold shoes are made with breathable memory foam for comfort and support. We recently caught up with Tanise, who is currently based in Lee’s Summit, Missouri, to learn more about her story.

When did you first know you wanted to be a Footwear Designer?
I had always been interested in fashion, and at an early age I began to fall in love with shoes. So when I discovered that I wanted to be a fashion designer, I knew my focus was going to be shoes.

What was your path to FIDM?
My path to FIDM was a blessing in disguise. I knew from high school that I wanted to be an entrepreneur and fashion designer, so I chose business and fashion classes as my electives. In one of my fashion classes, I was introduced to FIDM as an opportunity to further my fashion education, but at that time FIDM did not have the specific footwear focus I was seeking. So, I applied and was accepted to Parsons in New York. I was supposed to start school during the fall of 2001, but after September 11, I knew I would not attend Parsons that year. In the meantime, I attended Stephens College in Columbia, Missouri for one year studying business and fashion. I thought I would start at Parsons the following year, but by that time, FIDM had developed a Footwear Design & Development program as an Advanced Study degree, and it seemed serendipitous!The only caveat was that the Fashion Design program was a prerequisite, so I planned to start at FIDM studying Fashion Design first. Due to the schedule of FIDM quarters, the Footwear program was set to start during the end of my second year of the Fashion program. To achieve my goals, I had to get special approval from the Admissions Director to overlap the two programs.

What were some of the most valuable lessons you learned at FIDM?
The most valuable lesson learned was the importance of focus. Through rigorous projects and weekly deadlines, you have to stay focused in order to do quality work. More specifically to fashion, successful designs and collections have a clear and focused vision. I think during my time at FIDM, many of my classes indoctrinated that lesson.

What led you to strike out on your own after working for seven years at Restricted Footwear?
I loved designing with Restricted; it was a very fun time in my career. I was given the freedom to be creative and design trend-driven collections, many of which were featured in top publications and television shows. One of my designs was copied by probably the most famous shoe designer of our generation. But in the spirit of growth and exploring more areas of my craft, I wanted to expand the reach of my designs.

Tell us about the inspiration behind your brand Glory Gold: As a young, successful, ambitious, professional woman, I wanted to create designs that embody that personality and from that perspective. I strive for my designs to empower women to be at their best by looking and feeling their best. I wanted to bring my sophisticated style to market, and create designs that inspire the importance of being polished.

How do you enjoy entrepreneurship? What are some of the challenges? I enjoy learning all of the other aspects of running a business, such as marketing, accounting, and logistics, which is another nod to a lesson learned at FIDM. One of my teachers expressed the importance of taking advantage of any and all opportunities to work in different departments when you land a job, so that if you do decide to become an entrepreneur, you will have gained some of those experiences. The challenge for me currently is resisting the urge to want to delve deeper into those other roles because I just do not have the time. I try as much as possible to keep my focus on design and creating new collections.

What advice would you give to an aspiring shoe designer?
There are a lot of technical aspects of shoe design. I think even before I truly experienced that I would need the technical knowledge, I knew how important it was to learn. Being creative and fashionable is only half of what it takes to be a designer. To be successful you must learn the fundamentals of design and what elements create a great pair of shoes.