Designer Profile: Roberta do Espirito Santo Martins

Editorial Note: This month, in advance of NYFW and World Suicide Prevention Day on Sept 10, 2020, and in conjunction with Mikeysline in the Scottish Highlands, FWO is featuring outstanding young designers with a focus on mental health and wellness.

Roberta do Espirito Santo Martins

Roberta do Espírito Santo Martins is a footwear fashion revelation hailing from the capital of Brazil.

A Mandarin Chinese teacher, she has lived in Rio de Janeiro and Minas Gerais, but was born and resides in Brasília.

Roberta do Espirito Santo Martins

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Her collection “R Espirito Santo” was featured in Brazil’s Capital Fashion Week. Roberta’s shoes created four looks for Concretamente Brasília, an organization that values artisanal labor in Brasília.

Concretamente Brasília is an organization that values artisanal labor in Brasília

In July 2019 — in the last challenge supported by the Brazilian Footwear Industry Association (Abicalçados) — Roberta won the “community challenge” for the company Neorubber. The task was to create a capsule collection with three sandal/flip-flop products, with characteristics and/or elements that would refer, in an iconic way, to the “Coca-Cola” brand, using their symbols.

Q: What sparked your interest in fashion?

I cannot precisely mark the beginning of my passion for fashion. But since I was a little girl I loved drawing. I drew clothes, shoes, bags.

I liked making my own paper dolls with all possible accessories, with different colors, makeup. I still have some kept from childhood; each doll came with a complete look.

I loved drawing like that and playing with dolls. I don’t have anyone in the family pursuing a fashion career, but my family has a lot of musicians.

My father sings and plays stringed instruments very well, so I think their creativity (father, uncles, grandfather) inspired me a lot.

Q: As a designer, what matters to you most?

I love to design shoes and I prefer the ones with unusual heels: concept shoes, with heels in surprising shapes.

I prefer the ones with unusual heels: concept shoes

Even in earlier times women wore more neutral clothes, but always wore gloves, hats, and that gave the color, the joy; that’s why I like to draw clothes, but I also love designing accessories.

I think that one thing that is normal in women is the desire to surprise and to be surprised, and I like to draw this on my sketches. I like to design shoes that can surprise both those who will look and also be something more than the person was thinking about having, winning or buying.

But of course it is necessary that they bring enough comfort and security to walk and parade through the streets of life.

Q: Who do you envision as your “core customer?”

People who want to enhance their strength, their security, joy and beauty.

Q: What’s your vision for the future?

My view is very positive. I believe that we will have prolonged better days and we will be able to express our way of thinking, our lifestyle, in a much more harmonious and safe way.


Learn More

On Instagram @r.espiritosanto

With love,


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