BWA Chats To…Amy, Of Cali and Cale Footwear!

We chat to Amy Castle, designer of Cali and Cale Footwear about the brand, life and inspirations. Make sure to check out the e-store here.

Tell us a little about the brand and how the name came about?

It was really important to create an original name for the label that reflected what we are about. Creating a collection is about people, skills and ideas coming together. A big influence for me and the brand is contrasts. These can be found everywhere and often produce the most interesting design.

Cali and Cale came from a little name book my parents had; Cali from Greek meaning ‘beautiful’ and Cale from English meaning ‘bold’. The two names are similar but different, masculine and feminine – a contrast that creates balance.

What has drawn you to accessories, in particular footwear?

I really enjoy drawing, making and sewing. Art was my favourite subject at school so when I finished I went on to study a Foundation degree in Art and Design. My next step was to focus on fashion, though I didn’t feel apparel was the right move. I really enjoy the more sculptural aspect of accessories and love the craft and the tradition of leather work. I went on to study a degree in Footwear at Cordwainers College in East London which is part of the London College of Fashion. The East End was a vibrant and creative place to live and study; at the college I spent years learning every part of the shoe making process.

Could you fill us in a little on the design process behind designing footwear?

Designing is about getting creative and inspired. For me this is about seeing everything around you: news, exhibitions, films, gigs, festivals, markets…

I collect things as I go and collate my ideas on paper when I start sketching. All these inspirational things mix with the technical part of the brain and product design evolves from there. After that initial idea there is a reasonable amount of development, tweaking and testing before you get a final product.

What do you look for when sourcing leather and materials for your pieces?

Cali and Cale products are made from leather and in footwear it is really important to use the right leather. A soft buttery leather that would be great for gloves is not good for a shoe so the leather must be right for the design and function of the product.
Colour is key for Cali and Cale collections, so I have the leather made to the Pantone reference we are using for the season.

How would you describe the Cali and Cale aesthetic?

Pure understated style – simple contemporary design combined with artisan techniques that captures the truly Australian spirit of laid-back luxury.

What are the key pieces to shop for in the current collection?

I have been wearing all of our sandals to really get to know them. In the collection itself there is a contrast of styles; the beautiful bright colours and bold monochrome on the Carla and Shelly; to the Artisan woven styles in contemporary shapes such as the Paddington and Cross. My favourite (this week) is the Shelly; this flatform is simple, contemporary, comfortable and goes with just about anything!

Who or what inspires you creatively?

I am always inspired by contrasts, they often make for the most exciting design. I’m quite a curious person and will collect things and images – it could be a photo, the colour of someones jumper or even a piece of rope!

Finally, if you could have breakfast with anyone alive or dead, who would it be and why?

Florence Walsh from Florence + The Machine. I saw her perform recently at the Sydney Opera House as part of the Vivid Live festival and it was truly breathtaking. I have spent so many years listening to her music that it was amazing to see it performed live in such a special place. She also seems to have a good sense of humour combined with great style and a warm persona so I think she would be a perfect breakfast companion. There will even be a Florence sandal in the Summer – eclectic and vibrant like it’s namesake.

Check out some of the amazing campaign images from Cali and Cale below!


  • Reply yslyenom Monday 26th May, 2014 at 1:19 am

    I would like the sandals even better without those dark blue straps.

  • Reply dj23249 Saturday 28th December, 2013 at 5:35 am

    very interesting

  • Reply indiana Tuesday 7th August, 2012 at 3:23 pm


  • Reply thugsy Monday 6th August, 2012 at 8:16 am

    love love love
    shoes 🙂

  • Reply doogs Monday 6th August, 2012 at 8:13 am


  • Reply bardie Monday 6th August, 2012 at 8:08 am


  • Reply jarjar Monday 6th August, 2012 at 8:03 am


  • Reply angelaeastwood Sunday 5th August, 2012 at 6:56 pm

    they look very beautiful and festive, i’d wear them to the beach

  • Reply Cinthia Sunday 5th August, 2012 at 6:01 pm

    retro look!

  • Reply mandystsai Sunday 5th August, 2012 at 5:09 pm

    Photos look great!

  • Reply adnrew Sunday 5th August, 2012 at 10:44 am

    looks comfy

  • Reply KatP Saturday 4th August, 2012 at 2:08 pm

    comfy and cute!

  • Reply godsaur Friday 3rd August, 2012 at 11:49 am


  • Reply julzjulzz Thursday 2nd August, 2012 at 8:54 pm

    funky !

  • Discomilk
    Reply Discomilk Thursday 2nd August, 2012 at 9:41 am

    great interview and photography 🙂

  • Fashionista8P
    Reply Fashionista8P Thursday 2nd August, 2012 at 9:31 am

    cute brand, love the name 🙂

  • Reply dj23249 Thursday 2nd August, 2012 at 6:58 am

    Great name and the retro sandal do look comfortable

  • Reply foxoduck Thursday 2nd August, 2012 at 12:12 am

    Finally let’s make flat sandals hot!

  • Reply Cinthia Wednesday 1st August, 2012 at 11:23 pm

    dont really like the shoes

  • Reply Ange Wednesday 1st August, 2012 at 11:19 pm


  • Reply Senorita Wednesday 1st August, 2012 at 11:14 pm

    great interview

  • Reply Nimma Wednesday 1st August, 2012 at 10:54 pm

    great interview!

  • Reply Jenny Wednesday 1st August, 2012 at 10:49 pm


  • Reply Zerotolove Wednesday 1st August, 2012 at 10:02 pm

    Ooooh love them! x

  • Reply Misskate Wednesday 1st August, 2012 at 9:59 pm

    Great sandals!

  • Reply AmberB Wednesday 1st August, 2012 at 9:47 pm

    Cute and comfy looking

  • Reply dina Wednesday 1st August, 2012 at 9:37 pm

    they look like very comfy shoes!

  • Reply RachelMoon Wednesday 1st August, 2012 at 9:14 pm


  • Reply Trumanfan Wednesday 1st August, 2012 at 8:20 pm

    Very European but with an exotic twist, not to mention comfort!

  • Reply maggielyly Wednesday 1st August, 2012 at 6:59 pm


  • Reply misskirstin Wednesday 1st August, 2012 at 6:21 pm

    Very interesting interview, her sandels looks so comfortable and so very stylish..

  • Reply MsKimo Wednesday 1st August, 2012 at 5:28 pm

    It’s nice to see people who care so much about going beyond to please consumers.

  • Reply didon47 Wednesday 1st August, 2012 at 5:19 pm

    finally an all leather fashionable casual footwear

  • Reply paperplane__x Wednesday 1st August, 2012 at 5:18 pm

    the shoes look cute

  • Reply rosesforthedead Wednesday 1st August, 2012 at 4:33 pm

    Shoes look great

  • Nicole
    Reply Nicole Wednesday 1st August, 2012 at 4:19 pm

    Very interesting read 🙂

  • make up magic
    Reply make up magic Wednesday 1st August, 2012 at 1:36 pm

    such beautiful photos and a great interview

  • Reply Whatthe Wednesday 1st August, 2012 at 1:12 pm

    I love those shoes. Yes, choice of the right name is a very important thing.

  • Reply adnrew Wednesday 1st August, 2012 at 11:27 am


  • Reply fifi73 Wednesday 1st August, 2012 at 11:26 am

    Great interview! The shoes look very comfy too…

  • Reply Ian Wednesday 1st August, 2012 at 11:13 am

    toe thong sandals, wow i remember these from the 1970’s

  • Reply cadam Wednesday 1st August, 2012 at 11:09 am

    shoes look comfy

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