Emma Hope trained at Cordwainers College in east London. Her shop, selling shoes and a new handbag range, is in Sloane Square, London SW1. She also designs for Paul Smith

"I found one of these bags (1) at the bottom of a suitcase and I think I bought another in Cornwall. I really liked the embroidery on this Indian slipper (2) that I found in Portobello market. That is a template for some embroidery (3) on a shoe. I'm doing my autumn/winter collection at the moment (4) and I'm doing some chunky little heels. I found this fantastic glue in the shop at the end of the road (5) which is actually car-body filler, it's great for building up heels. I go to trade fairs every six months to look for leathers and materials - these (6) are some swatches for next season. When shops come in to see the shoes I like to be able to give them Polaroids (7) of what they have ordered. At the moment I have my spring/summer '99 collection which some of these shoes (8) come from, and also my autumn/winter collection. I really liked the shape of this bag (9), it's old-fashioned with lots of compartments. It's easier to show factories something you like the shape of, than starting from scratch - for one of the bags in my next collection I folded up a Jiffy bag for them to get the size, shape and squashiness of it."

Interview by Aoife O'Riordain

Photograph by Darren Regnier

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