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Friulanes have their origins in the Friuli region in north-eastern Italy but are often described as a Venetian brand.
Their roots go back at least to the 19th century.
Originally, the sole was handmade from recycled rags and bicycle tires, while the uppers were made from heavy fabrics for winter use and lighter ones for summer use, often decorated with hand embroidery.
Today, friulanes are still made by hand in cotton canvas, with car tires as part of the sole and with velvet uppers.

June 2021

Frederikke Lett has the world’s smallest friulane shop. I began to follow her while I was writing about paper artist Rie Elise Larsen for HÅNDVÆRK bookazine no 5.
I have noticed friulanes showing up in glossy fashion mags in recent years, and since Instagram knows my preferences, I also see them there.

About the Italian shoos and Frederikke Lett in HÅNDVÆRK bookazine no. 8
Buy the bookazine in a kiosk, design-or museums shop or a bookshop or online here

Friulanes have their origins in the Friuli region in north-eastern Italy but are often described as a Venetian brand.
Their roots go back at least to the 19th century.
Originally, the sole was handmade from recycled rags and bicycle tires, while the uppers were made from heavy fabrics for winter use and lighter ones for summer use, often decorated with hand embroidery.
Today, friulanes are still made by hand in cotton canvas, with car tires as part of the sole and with velvet uppers.

Frederikke has a law degree and worked as a lawyer for the Confederation of Danish Industry.
For more than 15 years now, she has been working as a writer, publisher, shoe seller, director and street sweeper, to mention a few of her many ventures. Her business card reads ‘Frederikke Lett, no title’.

I am basically interested in people and their stories,’ she says when we meet in the small terraced house in Copenhagen that is her home, shop and publishing house.
Apropos shop: if you buy a pair of slippers from Frederikke you get a poem in the bargain and, not least, a good chat about life’s big and small issues.
Crises, for example.
Just a few minutes into our conversation, I realize that major existential crises made Frederikke who she is today.
All my crises somehow reach back to the first and most profound one: my mother’s suicide while I was an infant. In my adult life, I have been on a constant quest to realize the inner fantasy world I wrapped around my young mind as a consequence of the suicide.
Major crisis number two struck when she realized, at the age of 30 and coming from a family of lawyers, that she had to break away from her current path to express herself creatively.
She quit her job, left the man she thought she was going to marry and began to write. Film reviews, among other texts; film being her main passion along with poetry and theatre.
Existential crisis number three, a fairly recent occurrence that led her to move from northern Zealand into the house she is now living in with her daughter, generated further development.

Once I lived by the motto “Carpe diem” (seize the day).
Inspired by an older friend, who is a lawyer, my current motto is “Memento mori” (remember that you must die),’
Frederikke explains.

Theatre and poetry were the topics I spoke to Rie Elise Larsen about.
She told me about staging a total theatre performance in Frederikke’s house in September 2021 in connection with the release of the first book from the publishing house Frederikke Lett: a translation of Save Me the Waltz, Zelda Fitzgerald’s only published book.
Zelda Fitzgerald wrote the autobiographical novel while she was hospitalized in a psychiatric healthcare facility. The book describes her youth as a celebrated beauty, her dream of becoming a great dancer and her stormy marriage with F. Scott Fitzgerald.
The book is about her, me and all women,’ says Frederikke, adding, ‘Perhaps the theatrical setting was Rie’s idea, or maybe it emerged between us … We turned the house into one big Zelda universe and brought her back to life for a day. Rie had sewn tapestries for all the windows, and we wore blue vintage boiler suits from Olibrius workwear ( also mentioned in bookazine no. 8) that Rie had embellished with appliqué quotations from the book.
There were actors on every floor of the house and 200 guests.
It was magical, and I was COMPLETELY calm.

Back to friulanes – were they already part of your selection at the time?
Yes, they had been delivered the previous year, and all I did, really, was allow the word to spread. I first stumbled on them 11 years ago. I was in Venice for the film festival, a city I thought I would hate but which I came to love.
Carrying my three-month-old daughter in a baby sling on my belly, I experienced the city’s dust and moods. I soon discovered that if I took two steps left, I could completely escape the throngs of tourists I had been dreading and felt as if I was in a film, full of living, talking, vibrant Italians walking around with soft feet in colourful friulanes.
If only it was possible to be reborn as an Italian!
Year after year, I have returned; year after year, I have taken in the city and its elegant citizens, and every year I have bought a pair of
The idea of selling the shoes in Denmark gradually grew stronger. Then the Covid pandemic hit and with it, a sudden, strong sense of “Memento mori”. We are living now, now.

I hear about the walls Frederikke hit and the paths that led her to the right shoe factory that was able and willing to deliver. In August 2020, she received her first small delivery.
Just as you have noticed friulanes popping up everywhere, so did I. Initially, I thought I had probably missed the boat, but then I came to my senses and realized there are enough customers to go round, and that perhaps, the timing was perfect. So I placed a big order with the intention of making Copenhagen more colourful.

After Zelda, I felt that all doors were open, including the doors of the shoe shop.
My next and most recent publication is Keith Thomas Lohse’s collection of poems
Mit navn er Keith – en slags digte (My Name Is Keith: Poems of a Sort).
Keith Thomas Lohse has been an online and underground phenomenon for two decades. He has previously published on social media and has been a radio host, constantly in opposition to what is politically correct.
In connection with this release, we staged the house again. This time, 300 people attended readings, music and general festivities.
Rie and I hand-painted T-shirts with quotations from the book, which contains 49 poems on violence, drinking, sex, hopelessness.
The most sought-after quotation was “ord gør mig pisse liderlig” (words make me so fucking horny).

Frederikke talks about hand-written coffee-stained press releases (which resulted in many reviews), about going round Copenhagen on a bicycle to hand-deliver orders for books and/or friulanes to happy customers, poetry readings out the kitchen window, owning up to who she is and trusting her gut feeling.
We prepare to wrap up. Frederikke dreams big:
Imagine if I owned Lille Amalienborg.’ Frederikke points out the window towards Dag Hammerskjölds Allé, where the building Lille Amalienborg has for years stood as a tumble-down ghost palace.
It would make an amazing theatre.
If I were the theatre director, I would go on stage every night before the show and share my excitement, and if I could tell the audience what to do, they would have to rise to the occasion and dress in beautiful and colourful clothes.

Artikel fra HÅNDVÆRK bookazine no. 8
Køb bookazinet i en kiosk eller en design-eller museumsbutik
eller online her

Frederikke Lett, som har verdens mindste Friulane-butik, begyndte jeg at følge i forbindelse med, at jeg skrev om papirkunstner Rie Elise Larsen i HÅNDVÆRK bookazine no. 5.
Selv har jeg noteret mig, at de det seneste år er dukket op i de glittede modemagasiner, og da Instagram kender til mine præferencer, får jeg dem også præsenteret her.

Friulane har deres udspring i det nordøstitalienske område Friuli, men omtales ofte som venetianske.
Deres eksistens kan med sikkerhed spores tilbage til det 19. århundrede.
Oprindelig blev sålen håndsyet af genbrugsklude og cykeldæk, overdelen af tunge tekstiler til vinterbrug og lettere til sommerbrug, ofte blev de udsmykket med håndbroderi.
Et par moderne Friulane er stadig fremstillet i hånden, af bomuldslærred og bildæk i sålen og med velour som overdel.

Frederikke er oprindelig uddannet jurist, og i den egenskab har hun været ansat i Dansk Industri.
De seneste mere end 15 år har hun arbejdet som skribent, forlægger, skohandler, instruktør og gadefejer, blot for at nævne nogle af hendes mange jern i ilden. Der står Frederikke Lett, “uden titel” på hendes visitkort.
“Jeg er grundinteresseret i mennesker og deres fortællinger”, siger hun, da vi mødes i hendes kartoffelrækkehus i København, hvor hun bor og har butik og forlag.
Apropos butikken, køber man et par slippers hos Frederikke, får man et digt med på vejen, og ikke mindst en god samtale om livets store og små spørgsmål.
Kriser for eksempel.

Jeg har ikke været inden for døren mange minutter, før jeg ved, at det er de store livskriser, som har formet Frederikke til det, hun er i dag.
“Alle mine kriser trækker på en eller anden måde tråde tilbage til den første og største: min mors selvmord, da jeg var spæd. Jeg har som voksen været på en evig jagt efter at virkeliggøre den indre fantasiverden, jeg som en konsekvens af selvmordet svøbte mit barnesind i.”
Stor krise nummer to indtraf, da hun som 30-årig fandt ud af, at hun, som er ud af en familie af jurister, måtte bryde ud af rammerne for at kunne arbejde kreativt.
Hun sagde sit job op, gik fra den mand, hun troede, hun skulle giftes med, og begyndte at skrive. Filmanmeldelser blandt andet. Film er hendes store lidenskab. Film, poesi og teater.
Livskrise nummer tre, som er af relativt ny dato og blandt andet medførte en flytning fra Nordsjælland til det hus, hun og datteren nu bor i, satte yderligere skub i udviklingen.

“Engang levede jeg efter mottoet ‘Carpe diem’ (Grib dagen).
Inspireret af en ældre juraveninde er mit motto nu ‘Memento mori’ (Husk, at du skal dø)”
, forklarer Frederikke.
Teater og poesi var netop det, jeg hørte om fra Rie Elise Larsen.
Hun fortalte om iscenesættelsen af et totalteater i Frederikkes hus, som skulle finde sted i september 2021 i forbindelse med, at Frederikke Letts forlag udgav sin første bog, en oversættelse af Gem den sidste vals, Zelda Fitzgeralds eneste bog.
Romanen, som er selvbiografisk, skrev Zelda Fitzgerald, mens hun var i behandling på et psykiatrisk hospital. Bogen beskriver hendes ungdom som feteret skønhed, hendes drøm om at blive en stor danserinde og hendes stormfulde ægteskab med F. Scott Fitzgerald.
“Bogen handler om hende, mig og alle kvinder”, siger Frederikke og fortsætter: “Måske var iscenesættelsen Ries idé, eller en idé, som voksede mellem os? Vi omdannede huset til et stort Zelda-univers og vakte hende til live for en eneste dag. Rie havde syet billedtæpper til alle vinduerne, og de blå vintagekedeldragter fra Olibrius Workwear ( også omtalt i bookazine no 8) som vi var iklædt, havde Rie forsynet med applikerede citater fra bogen.
Der var skuespillere på alle husets etager og 200 fremmødte gæster.
Det var magi, og jeg var HELT rolig.”

Tilbage til Friulane – de var allerede en del af dit vareudbud på det tidspunkt?
“Ja, de var kommet hjem året forinden, og jeg havde ikke rigtig gjort noget andet end at lade rygtet løbe. Jeg faldt over dem første gang for 11 år siden. Jeg var på filmfestival i byen Venedig – en by, som jeg troede, jeg ville hade, men kom til at elske.
Med min datter, som var bare tre måneder, i en vikle på maven, oplevede jeg byens støv og stemninger. Hurtigt opdagede jeg, at gik jeg to skridt til venstre, forsvandt alle de turister, jeg havde frygtet, og jeg fik en fornemmelse af at være en del af en film, fuld af levende, snakkende, livsbegejstrede italienere, som gik omkring med bløde fødder i farverige Friulane-sko.
Gid man kunne blive genfødt som italiener!
År efter år er jeg kommet tilbage, år efter år har jeg betragtet byen og de elegante indbyggere, hvert år har jeg købt et par Friulane
Langsomt voksede en idé om at forhandle skoene i Danmark. Så kom corona og en mærkelig stærk fornemmelse af Memento Mori. Det er nu, nu vi lever, fyldte mig.”

Jeg hører om de blindgyder, Frederikke gik ind i, og de veje, som førte til, at hun fandt den rette skofabrik, som kunne og ville levere. I august 2020 var første lille portion i hus.
“Ligesom du har opdaget, at der er Friulane mange steder, så var den indsigt også nået mig. Først tænkte jeg, at jeg var for sent ude, at jeg havde forspildt mine muligheder, så kom jeg til fornuft og indså, at der er kunder nok til os alle, og at timingen måske netop er perfekt, så købte jeg stort ind, med det formål at gøre København mere farverig.”

“Efter Zelda havde jeg følelsen af, at alle døre stod åbne, også skobutikkens.
Min næste og seneste udgivelse er Keith Thomas Lohses digtsamling
Mit navn er Keith – en slags digte.”
Keith Thomas Lohse har været et online- og undergrundsfænomen i to årtier, han har tidligere udgivet på sociale medier og har været radiovært, altid i opposition til det politisk korrekte.
I forbindelse med udgivelsen iscenesatte vi igen huset. Denne gang kom der 300 gæster til oplæsninger, musik og fest i gaden.
Rie og jeg havde håndmalet T-shirts med citater fra bogen, som indeholder 49 digte om vold, druk, sex, håbløshed.
Mest eftertragtede citat var ‘ord gør mig pisse liderlig’.”

Frederikke fortæller om håndskrevne, kaffeplettede pressemeddelelser (som har resulteret i mange anmeldelser), om at cykle byen rundt for personligt at aflevere bestillinger på digtsamlinger og/eller Friulane til glade kunder, om digtoplæsninger ud ad køkkenviduet og om at stå ved sig selv og stole på sin mavefornemmelse.

Vi gør klar til at afrunde, og Frederikke drømmer stort:
“Tænk, hvis jeg havde Lille Amalienborg, Frederikke peger ud ad vinduet i retning af Dag Hammarskjölds Allé, hvor bygningen Lille Amalienborg i årevis har været et forfaldent spøgelsesslot.
Det kunne blive et fantastisk teater.
Hvis jeg var teaterdirektør, ville jeg hver aften gå på scenen inden forestillingen og dele min begejstring, og hvis jeg kunne bestemme over publikum, skulle de gøre sig umage og klæde sig smukt og farvestrålende.”

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