Elvira di Gaïa (Elvira Panagiotopoulou)
Elvira di Gaïa (Elvira Panagiotopoulou) is an award winning shoe designer, founder and artistic director of DI GAÏA footwear. Born in Athens and raised in Paris, Elvira grew up with an array of stimuli combining the nature and heritage of both cultures. Her sense of aesthetics and love for craftsmanship was fostered by the endless air of beauty she breathed and the dynamic, elegant and creative women that always surrounded her.
Her passion for fashion and craftsmanship was sealed when she designed a jewelry and footwear collection while studying Marketing and Communications in Athens. Enthralled by the creative process, she proceeded to take a Footwear Design course at the London College of Fashion. With an excited spirit, she decided to hone her skills and move to San Mauro Pascoli, the famous luxury shoe district in Italy, to study Footwear Design at Cercal school. She then advanced to achieve an MA in Fashion Accessories at Istituto Marangoni in Milan.
Upon completing her studies, she started working in Paris and Milan with some of the most prestigious luxury footwear and fashion brands, such as Bruno Frisoni, Diego Dolcini, Narciso Rodriguez, Madeleine Vionnet, Dolce & Gabbana and Balmain.
In 2015 she took the leap and launched DI GAΪA, her very own luxury footwear brand made in Italy. In February 2018, she won Vogue Talents “The Future Footwear Generation” contest held by Rene Caovilla.
Today she lives in Athens, working as the artistic director of DI GAΪA and as a footwear consultant and guest designer for Greek fashion brands.