'I want to make women feel women feel ready to take on the world,' says shoe designer Brian Atwood. How? By designing unabashedly sexy shoes: vertiginous stilettos, technicolour sandals and bad-ass boots. In a season of flats, Brian Atwood champions the heel. TheRe is something decidedly Italian about Chicago-born Atwood's love of pure, undiluted glamour, so it is no surprise to learn that he divides his time between his studio in Milan, and Manhattan. He began his career in the Italian city too, after initially studying fashion design in New York. Seven years spent travelling the world as a model led him eventually to shoes-in 1996, he was taken under the wing of Gianni Versace, and he designed ready to wear for Versus before being appointed Head Designer of accessories at Vercase. His eponynous brand, founded in 2001, has won the 47 year old industy acclaim (he was awarded the CDFA Award for Accessoy Design in 2003) and an A-list clientele: JLaw, Gwyneth Paltrow and Rosie Huntigton-Whiteley all call upon him when they need a red carpet lift. His legion of followers is mainly based Stateside-but not for long. A new e ommerce site, slated for launch in the next few months, will at last give UK fans an oopotunity to shop all he has to offer-and Atwood a platform to go global. 'I love women' says Atwood. 'Their uplift of spirit when they put on a great pair of shoes.'