T O   S P A R K    W O N D E R  . . .

...Is to ignite one's imagination, joy and admiration, create light and find beauty in darkness. Through a strong passion for timeless elegance and a genuine connection with each client, a new design entity, a unique pair, comes to life.

Every pair of shoes is meticulously crafted, inviting romantics to elevate their senses—to walk with confidence, express themselves, and evoke wonder.

Driven by the quest to elevate one's beauty, I seek an aesthetic harmony between classic and contemporary lines, materials, and production techniques. I play with proportions to create tension and accentuate specific shapes, for a distinctive look.

Originating as a product designer, my journey moved through luxury automotive and medical design sectors. Combined with my artisanal shoemaking knowledge, I offer a rich blend of experiences, enabling me to pursue a aesthetic balanced design, which surpasses conventions and logic.

My Atelier is my haven—a space where I explore designs freely, experiment with materials, and forge inspiring connections. The thrill of witnessing a design come to life, moving with the client's confident strides, remains an unparalleled joy for me.

Explore this website for a glimpse into my evolving signature, and be welcome to visit regularly.

Warm regards,
Alexander Khorikian

 (Portfolio link-15MB)

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Alexander L. Khorikian August 10, 1986 | Kraków, Poland

Of Polish-Armenian descent, Alexander spent his formative years near Rotterdam, currently residing in Arnhem, The Netherlands.

His early life was marked by social exclusion, loss, and the absence of a father figure. To cope, Alexander found solace in drawing and immersing himself in nature for hours on end. He was a reserved, shy child, struggling to articulate his feelings to others.

His Roman Catholic upbringing introduced him to mysticism, symbolism, and sacrifice for divinity—a fascination that emerged early on. The almost myth-like cavalry tales of military pride from his Polish heritage stirred his interest in military etiquette, particularly the intricate details of gold-threaded uniform segments like epaulettes, insignia, medals, and other memorabilia he inherited from his grandfather, whom he only knew from these tales. This, alongside his father's specialization in historic Persian artisanally produced rugs and kelims, cultivated his appreciation and understanding of what characteristics luxury goods have and laid the foundation for his fascination with timeless, high-quality artifacts.

Despite financial constraints, occasional visits to the theater to witness ballet performances left an indelible mark. The sheer beauty, control, and expression in movement of the ballerinas on the magical stages instilled in Alexander a deep appreciation for ballet. It also instilled a deep reverence for classic and contemporary music—an immense source of inspiration and solace during challenging times.

From an early age, drawing served as an outlet. As he grew older, Alexander delved into crafting and curiously deconstructing products, often relying on instinct rather than following instructions, time flew by when creating. As preadolescent growing up among three sisters and his mother, he observed that women's fashion seemed to offer a broader spectrum of designs compared to men's clothing, especially in shoes. His older sister's black kidskin t-strap D'Orsay pumps would spark wonder in him, captivate him, as well-designed shoes still do, even today. From his teenage years, his experimentation with his first pair of heels left him intrigued by the sensation but disappointed by their lack of stability, comfort, and refinement. Experience he would take to heart later in his career.

Though contemplating the military academy, Alexander pursued a Bachelor's in Industrial Design in Rotterdam, with a focus on transportation design. His inclination towards concepts, design, and styling drew him more frequently to the Willem de Kooning Academy of Fine Arts than the engineering faculty. At 21, he graduated with a concept car project at the luxury car manufacturer Donkervoort Automobielen, where he spent four years collaborating with the founder and design lead. Together, they sculpted the future of Donkervoort's exterior styling, elevating the luxury brand to newfound sophistication by melding divergent concepts into feasible designs, all while preserving the evolving brand's DNA and meeting technical demands.

Subsequently, Alexander transitioned to a medical technology firm, steadily advancing in his career. However, his passion for artisanal shoemaking persisted. He devoted his time to courses in Artisanal Shoemaking at the Dutch Shoe Academy (now René van den Berg Academy), learning from master shoemakers who crafted their own work and for the fashion industry's runway and couture shows. He honed various shoemaking skills—last modification, pattern making, material selection, and more—while apprenticing at a traditional men's shoe atelier (Duyv Shoes, Haarlem) during the brand's heyday.

Simultaneously, Alexander collected the necessary machinery and tools for his own atelier, supported by his long-time partner Selma Oors. In the last years of the artisanal shoemaking course, starting in 2014, he began bringing his unique designs to life for his initial clientele. Clients fell in love with his style... and comfort, as each design and shoe last is tailored to the client's specifications. This enables the wearer to walk with confidence and enjoy the event at hand. Alexander Khorikian's designs quickly garnered attention from curators, earning spots in prestigious exhibitions. Some notable publications and exhibitions were:

  • "Heaven or Hell" - Curator Elisabetta Pisu selected his couture shoe creation, "Lucious #1," displayed as an "Upcoming Designer" alongside historical works of Roger Vivier and Christian Louboutin at the Cube Design Museum.

  • "Masterly" - Curator Nicole Uniquole chose his atelier's work for display at the Masterly exhibition, showcasing the finest Dutch artisanal artists.

  • "Dutch Design Week" - His work was part of the "Damn Pretty Dutch Shoes" exhibition at Dutch Design Week, exhibited alongside creations by Peter Popps, Rene van den Berg, Iris van Herpen X United Nude, and Ilja Visser.

  • "Fashion Clash" - He emerged as the winner of a shoe design contest, exhibiting his work at the Fashion Clash Festival in Maastricht.

  • "Virtual Shoe Museum" - His creations became a permanent fixture at the esteemed online museum curated by Liza Snook.

  • "Museum of Bags and Purses" - Curated to temporary display work at exhibition (*closed since 2020)

In 2022, Alexander definitively quit the MedTech company, shifting his focus to his passion: The shoe design atelier, where he offers couture designs for clientele and patrons.


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