Skinny Legs, Tall Talent

Who is Skinny Legs?

Name: Kleo Xirou,
Location: Athens, Greece
Brand: Skinny Legs by Kleo Xirou

When & how did you start out creating your unique designs?

I started making jewelry in 2001, two years after I opened the KleoDrums workshop in Athens. I make hand-made percussion instruments, so I have a lot of tools and materials to play around with. My first accessories were layered two-tone leather and plastic cuffs – very retro 80’s now that I think of it.
Later I studied silversmithing at the Benaki Museum and the Psychiko Cultural Center with Lila Nte Tsaves. She was passionate about hand-made jewelry. Another great designer and craftsman, Pantelis Pittas, helped me refine my technical skills. I’ve tried to assimilate all their wisdom into my designs but admit I’ve utilized only a fraction of it so far.

What are the characteristics and philosophy or your work?

The defining qualities of my work are eclecticism, simplicity and quality craftsmanship. I often incorporate objects with a history, like the cinematic film of my View Carré series and the vintage poker chips of Beginner’s Luck.
I approach these “materials” as lost works of art, canvases that lack a frame, only the frame I provide does not necessarily “match” the content. This coexistence of distinct aesthetic styles, different epochs, comprises the Skinny Legs “look” as well as my personal world-view.
As a designer with no technical “background” in the arts, I exploit my ability to work intuitively, to extract design from my materials rather than conform them to a preconceived idea. This limits my potential in markets that thrive on quantity and constant variation. At the same time, it leads myself, and many designers, to seek more fitting environments, in fact, to collectively create them.

What do you see happening in the independent creative field recently?

The myriad of successful events, organizations and show rooms that promote local designers prove we are heading in the right direction. For some, these are stepping-stones towards mainstream markets. For others, they are the only way to be. We are not all scrambling up the same peak. And that is exactly why we can coexist in this landscape that’s being carved out as we go along. I’m convinced that what is emerging from the process will be greater than the sum of its parts…

Where can we find your work?
Find Skinny Legs by Kleo Xirou:
At the monthly Meet Market:
Shops In Athens:
B612 * Karaiskaki 35 * 2103255040
Eleni Marneri Creative Gallery * Agathoupoleos 5 * 2108668195
HO::LO * Asklipiou 57 * 2103633564
Orfanidιs * Kolokotroni 27 * 2103235643
RazzMatazz * Didotou 18 * 2103643645

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