Do you ever have those moments when you read a passage in a novel, hear a song on the radio, or see an item in a shop window and it sticks with you? It can be days, weeks, or months later, but then your mind revisits the phrase, the melody, the chic blend of vibrant colors – suddenly, the thing that impacted your life so wonderfully comes flooding back to your memory and you go home with one mission in mind: find it and make it a welcome addition in your day-to-day life.
That amazing, inspired feeling perfectly describes our budding relationship with Ed and Will, a Barcelonan brand so lovely that you will be dreaming of their gorgeous designs even when they’re at home in your closet.
Formed in 2013, this hot new brand is the brainchild of brothers Ed and Will, who use the business acumen they garnered in university to forge a path between strict, rigid architecture and elegant femininity. They take inspiration from the organic, using textures and colors found in nature and blending it with the finest materials.
The intensity of iron is reimagined as modern ebony galuchet, the beauty of a dawn takes form in exquisite sunshine yellow platform python – there is no facet of nature they haven’t reinterpreted with stunning results. We are particularly fond of the supple suede woven into a basket weave and the too-gorgeous-to-be-real lavender ostrich leather heeled sandal; though, honestly, every single design is enough to make you start planning your springtime outfits in the middle of winter. The attention the duo plays to every detail is magnificent and the balance they strike between fashion-forward and classically chic means that you’ll be able to wear these heels for years to come and they’ll never fail to turn heads in your wake.
The stylish, unique aesthetic and the sheer sophistication of Spanish craftsmanship is a combination that is hard to find in an up-and-coming brand, but Ed and Will has the potential and the je ne sais quoi to break into an international market before you can fasten the clasp on their deep-red Visik python heels. Sexy, sleek, and at the forefront of trends, we can’t wait to see where Ed and Will takes us on their path to success.
Aosta yellow python platform pointed-toe pump with scalloped sides and 120mm heel; available at Ed and Will
Borne ankle-strap white python sandal with a 120mm heel and 20mm concealed platform; available at Ed and Will
Borne ankle-strap sandal in lavender ostrich with a 120mm heel and 20mm concealed platform; available at Ed and Will
Chloe black leather bootie with a front gold zipper and 120mm heel; available at Ed and Will
Duna open-toe sandals with natural nubuck leather, handmade interlaced leather panel, 130mm heel and 20mm concealed platform; available at Ed and Will
Elaine pointed-toe pumps in black galuchat with a 120mm heel; available at Ed and Will
Elaine nude patent leather pointed-toe pump with a 120mm heel; available at Ed and Will
Topi grey suede and violet patent leather sandals with 130mm heel; available at Ed and Will
Visik t-strap sandal in deep red python; available at Ed and Will
Check out their latest collection and don’t forget to follow them on Instagram for more shoe candy.
Fresh on the heels of the 10 year anniversary of the iconic Pigalle stiletto pump, Christian Louboutin’s new collection is a veritable bevy of sporty influence, rock and roll chic, and vibrant femininity that proves, yet again, why Louboutins are still the Go-To brand for every fashion forward fashionista.
The thing we love about Christian Louboutin’s Spring/Summer collections (other than everything) is that they are always unafraid of making a bold, colorful statement. From patent leather to PVC, from gotta-look-twice embellished wedges to the iconic So Kate in metallic python leather, the SS15 collection is all about putting your best foot forward and strutting with confidence. Though it’s difficult to narrow our favorite designs, we can’t stop looking at the incredibly vibrant fringe of the Otrot stiletto and the phenomenal new interpretation of the Mea Culpa that is done in a warm gold and polished off with an elongated and elegant curved collar vamp.
The Mea Culpa isn’t the only style that has had a bit of an update and we can’t take our eyes off of the unique revamp of Louboutin’s sexy signature stiletto, a curved vamp design that continues down to a serpentine heel. That striking wavy design appears in multiple iterations, such as the Dalida, the Deepik, and the Vagachina, but our favorite has to be the Dalida d’orsay design done in patent opaline leather – the curved heel and stitched motif makes it a must-have for the upcoming sunny months.
As if that wasn’t enough (we’re trying to contain our gushing), Louboutin’s 130mm is back and sexier than ever, replete with t-straps, colorful patterns, and peep-toes. We can already picture the sky-high platform pumps on the heels of Dita Von Teese and other style-icon daredevils!
It takes a lot of guts to go into the footwear industry when your father is a veritable accessories virtuoso. After all, those are big shoes to fill! However, Gianvito Rossi, son of Sergio Rossi, has taken the challenge in stride and paved a way for his own brand to be front and center in the luxury shoe market. Drawn to classic designs with a subtle, yet unmistakable edge, his collections are always the perfect mix of sophisticated and sexy. Unsurprisingly, his Fall 2014 collection embodies everything he thrives on, from elegant statement makers to staples that will never leave your wardrobe rotation.
Inspired by “the cowgirls of long ago”, the palette this time around is the epitome of autumnal comfort – for example, cream spliced with black, a warm tan that’s reminiscent of the best latte you’ve ever had, and a burgundy that is so rich, you can practically picture the rustling leaves it was inspired by.
The collection is brought to life through contrasting that myriad of hues; the way the tan contrasts against the delicate black shaping, and hints of metallic pumpkin transforms an ankle booty into a total game changer, making the shoes stunning and versatile. The touches of calf hair cow print woven into the collection? Seamless and never too much, ideal for a day at the office and a date with the girls afterwards.
In terms of silhouettes, we see a lot of our favorite Gianvito standbys including lace-up peep-toe pumps, thick buckled ankle straps and over-the-knee heeled boots in smooth as butter leather. However, it’s not all classic, wear-everywhere designs, because he’s included a few gotta-look-thrice options, namely the lace and suede thigh-high Rose boot that will make you instantaneously channel your inner Rihanna the moment you finish lacing them up. Wowza!
With every collection, it becomes clear that Gianvito is a designer on a mission to dress the fiercest women with his age-defying designs. With Jennifer Lopez, Anne Hathaway, Julianne Moore, Emma Watson and Shailene Woodley a part of his esteemed clientele, it’s clear to see that he’s well on his way. We can’t wait to see what he does next!
Annie pointed-toe leather bootie in beetroot with contrast white Western-inspired trim and 100mm heel
Annie pointed-toe leather bootie in black with a contrast white piped leather Western style trim and 100mm heel
Bonnie white leather pump with black piped leather trim and 100mm heel; available at LuisaViaRoma
Bonnie two-tone leather pump with a western-inspired inlay motif; available in metallic orange & beige at LuisaViaRoma
Bonnie Rebel lace-up peep-toe bootie with a back-zip and sleek stiletto heel
Carlie double ankle-strap sandal in white leather or black suede with contrasting leather corset lacing detail
American-born with roots in Italy and France, Henri Lepore Dezert is no stranger to fashion. As a child, he worked with his father in their family-owned custom upholstery shop; later on, he moved to New York to work with his cousin, none other than the queen of patterned flirty dresses, Nanette Lepore. With ambition and design practically in his DNA, Henri used his discerning palate and superb business savvy to create and cultivate his own brand, separating himself from his family by breaching into footwear.
Luckily, we have obtained the ultimate scoop on this shoe maven and his debut collection. In our interview, he talks about the synchrony that he has found between shoe form, shape, and material; in many ways, the perfect shoe is well-rounded and complementary of itself. He emphasis a lack of forcing a shoe idea or design to happen, which must be why every millimeter of supple leather and suede of Henri’s shoes screams effortless.
Congratulations on your debut collection! After reading a bit about you and given your family’s history in both fashion & upholstery; what really lead you to “choose” shoes & pursue shoemaking?
Thank you, Ashley!
Meeting my wife Antonietta and moving from New York to Italy is what gave me the opportunity to pursue shoemaking the most. In Italy, most people do not live to work, they work to live and enjoy life. With that passion in mind I think shoemaking found me because I’m living in Italy and it has become a part of my everyday life.
Who are the women you design for? How would you describe your design aesthetic?
I design for the woman that desires to be alluring yet classy. My clientele tend to be women that are cultured and well travelled.
As a shoe designer I strive to create shoes that are simple but retain depth. I never force a structure or material just because one or the other is great, they must seamlessly go together to create the right shoe.
I would describe my design aesthetic as ethereal. I spend a lot of time looking for leathers and textiles that are unique and strive to use them in their optimal ways.
Can you explain a little about your design process? Do you have a inspiration board or listen to a certain type of music that helps keep you inspired and the creativity flowing?
My design process has three basic phases: concept phase, prototype phase and final sample phase.
I often begin each shoe by finding particular leathers or textiles that create a certain aura. I like to let the lines or colors of a leather or textile determine each shoe. I’m always going to trade fairs in Italy and France such as ‘Anteprima’ and ‘Cuir A Paris’ on the search for unique leathers, textiles and components.
Next to nature, music is probably my biggest inspiration. My favorite artist right now is Nicolas Jaar; I’ve listened to almost every set of his and each is a masterpiece. Every little sound seems to be precisely thought out, nothing goes to waste. He blends the old with the new so well, it becomes a new sound in itself and has definitely been an inspiration.
Who are your ultimate celebrity clients; who would you love to see wear your shoes on the red carpet?
Wow this is tough… There are so many celebrities that have great style but if I had to limit it to 5, I would say: Angelina Jolie, Zoe Saldana, Amy Adams, Lupita Nyong’o and Marion Cotillard.
Which style are you most proud of?
I love my Carmela ‘t-strap slingback’ pump; it’s the perfect blend of contemporary and classic design. Meet the debut collection which is currently available for pre-order (delivery beginning August 15, 2014) at Henri Lepore Dezert:Carmela crossback t-strap pump in black leather with tonal goatskin suede trim and 105mm heel Carmela crossback t-strap pump in glossy red patent leather with goatskin suede piping and 105mm heel Carmela crossback t-strap pump in white leather with contrasting bronze leather piped trim and 105mm heel Edda spat bootie in black leather with a black suede front panel, anodized antique gold stud buttons and stacked wood 85mm wedge heel Geary geometric cut-out bootie in black leather with a back-zip and 100mm heel Off The Cuff tricolor peep-toe platform sandal in cognac brown leather, pollen gold suede and white lizard with a stacked 120mm heel Razza double ankle-strap sandal in black leather & stingray with a metallic effect and 100mm heel Salana pointed-toe d’Orsay pump in pale gold python with a tonal piped leather trim and 100mm heel Zaldana open toe t-strap pump in blue silk satin with a darker blue leather and 120mm heel Zaldana open toe t-strap pump in augmented monochromatic chevron with a leather covered 120mm heel and platform
When we think of Sophia Webster, we think of sass. Pure, unadulterated, and heartfelt sass; in fact, we’re pretty sure that if you looked up “feisty” in the sartorial dictionary, a pair of her thin-heeled ankle-strap sandals would be pictured. For her Pre-Fall and Fall 2014 collections, Sophia takes a morose theme (“Heartbreak Hotel”) and turns it into something utterly charming and vibrant. Who needs love when you can buy shoes?
The shoes themselves would be at home in Barbie’s Dreamhouse or on the toes of one of the many girl power popgroups of the ‘90s. Metallic houndstooth, fringe, gaudy faux jewels, and vivid colors were just the start of the Cher Horowitz Heartbreak influence, the saturated over-the-top theme is threaded through both the collections. Fur-embellished mules and sandals collide with laser-cut gladiator over-the-knee boots making for a host of statement making shoes that would turn heads in any scenario. No boyfriend? No problem! These darling heels are sure to add enough sweetness to your wardrobe for an eternity – or, at least, until next season.
Leopard prints, rounded stacked ball heels, and cartoonish embellishments (paisley, hearts, and flamingos!) add an innocent streak through the collection, rounded out by the deviously high stiletto points and edgy addition of vinyl. In terms of silhouettes, we can always count on her to release a balanced collection of thick-soled vintage-inspired designs with pinpoint stilettos – though this time, she also included a couple sneakers and flat-soled sandals. One thing we love about Sophia is her ability to incorporate popular trends into her shoes without them losing her je ne sais quoi. She’s readily embraced the sportswear trend of recent seasons but unlike other designers, the confectionary color of the rubber treads and lace-up styles feel fresh, unique, and playful.
This collection has been hailed as another golden star in Sophia Webster’s impressive catalogue. After scooping up the Emerging Accessories Designer at the British Fashion Awards and landing a Fashion Forward sponsorship, she has become a veritable fashion train that is on the fast track to British design royalty. We’re excited to see where she takes her candy colored fairytale world – if it’s anything like this collection, we know we’ll be head over heels (Heartbreak Hotel not needed!).
It’s hard to believe that Giuseppe Zanotti’s twenty year road to success was not paved in stiletto-friendly golden cobblestones. He reminisced to WWD, “I started with stilettos that were superglam, superfeminine and sexy — and the business was a flop. For the first two or three seasons, it was a tragedy.” With the ink still damp on his LMVH partnership and an ever-growing fanbase, it’s hard to envision a fashion world bereft of his sleek and sexy footwear. It makes you want to go into your closet, pick up your favorite Zanotti stiletto – at least four inches high – and feel thankful that we live in an age of sass, verve, and sartorial savviness.
So, how doesGiuseppe Zanotti celebrate twenty phenomenally successful years in fashion? Not with a tell-all book or autobiographical movie, but – as per our expectations from the Italian footwear maestro – with more shoes; a four part delightful capsule collection, to be precise. Taking inspiration from the past while looking to the future is innovative and clever, a way to pay homage to those who were with him at the start of his journey to new coming fans that can’t get enough of his trademark snake embellishments.
With the gorgeously glamorous Spring 2014 collection still fresh in our minds (and hearts, and dreams…you get the picture), we were wondering how those exotic and quintessential Zanotti themes would appear in an autumnal context. If we had any doubts that he still had it (we didn’t, this is hypothetical), they would have been swept away by golden snake-embossed leather slingback stilettos and gotta-look-twice red quilted leather moto heels.
Glitter, suede, and python-embossed leather – oh my! This collection is one to start budgeting for, carrying designs fit for every lifestyle and fashion twist. From the stunning geometric suede and rhinestone-embellished booty to the golden leafy filigree on an open-toed sandal; from the glittery flat boot to the crimson mule; just when you think Zanotti can’t top his last collection, he finds a way to make you lust after a pair of kitten heels. And, really, is that not real power? In addition to the flattering and statement making silhouettes, there is a plethora of dainty silver chains, buckles, calf hair, snake emblems, and gold plating to make sure that one look from onlookers will have them keeling over in envy.
If these designs are any indication of the genius of Zanotti, we can only imagine the adept hand and skill used to craft his 40th anniversary. That’s just around the corner, right?
Gold filigree sandal in black suede embellished with gold leaves embroiderey and clusters of crystals; available at Saks Fifth Avenue
Cut-out black suede sandal with crystal embellished buckles down the side; available at Neiman Marcus
Red velvet sandal with a gold rope chain and crystal encrusted chain link t-strap
Midnight blue velvet ankle-cuff sandal with a leather covered heel and covered platform
Mirrored gold snake-embossed leather slip-on mule sandal with two bands
Silver snake-effect leather slip-on mule sandal with a covered 120mm heel
Black leather sandal with two adjustable buckled straps, armor-like gold-tone plate and silver studs
Black patent leather sandals with a buckled ankle-cuff and silver-tone pin heel
Black suede peep-toe bootie embellished with gold studs and triple wrap-around leather straps
Cutout peep-toe bootie in black suede with wrap-around leather straps and concealed side zip
Bright red suede pointed-toe cutout bootie with a slender buckled ankle-strap; available in red & black suede at Neiman Marcus
It’s hard to sum up Tabitha Simmons in a nutshell. In her youth, she was a stellar fashion model that successfully transformed her career into a must-have stylist, styling runway shows, lookbooks, and editorials for massive names such as American Vogue, Rag & Bone, Alexander McQueen and Dolce & Gabbana. Her pleasant demeanor and behind-the-fashion-scene acumen sent her career on a sky-high trajectory but Tabitha didn’t stop there. Her voracious appetite to try new things and artistic eye led her to pick up another avenue in the fashion industry: shoe design. Naturally, she and her brand have flourished. With that in mind, if we were to accurately describe her in three words, it’d probably be: Fashion’s Wonder Woman.
Since starting her brand in 2009, Tabitha’s footwear has been widely and warmly accepted by the fashion industry. Her Spring 2014 collection is as strong and lush as we’ve come to expect from Tabitha’s aesthetic, which is to say: everything we could ever want and more. Unmistakably feminine, confidently daring, it’s hard to pick a favorite.
The silhouettes range from sleek to quirky, strappy to minimalistic - giving plenty of options for any walk of life. We love how she’s not afraid to play around with heavier shapes and despite the season, even adding in a signature calf hair boot. Sugary sweet themes, such as thin baby blue stripes or candy colored glitter, are balanced out by the undoubtedly dramatic – we’re talking snakeskin, perforated eyelet leather, and crystal covered bows.
We particularly gravitate to the Bailey fullycrystal embellished sandal and the handful of designs that are printed with colorful butterfly designs on woven silk. They’re the perfect blend of classic and sass which make for the ultimate statement shoe.
Though the heels are high and the impact is bold, Tabitha never designs without comfort in mind. She understands the daily routine of a woman on the go and knows the importance of wearability, no matter the style or height. After all, we find it hard to believe that Tabitha herself is in one place at one time for more than five minutes – why shouldn’t style travel alongside comfort? We can’t ask for a collection of shoes more perfect than hers.
Alexa slingback pumps with a contrast panel at the toe; available in white leather at Tabitha Simmons and in black & nude leather at Moda Operandi.
When it comes to modern, iconic footwear – a brand that ceaselessly melds class and infectious sex appeal into every design, there is only one brand that (rightfully) springs to mind: Christian Louboutin. A designer so obsessed with his craft that he slept in his design studio for eight years while launching his career into stratospheric heights, it isn’t remotely surprising that he consistently delivers jaw dropping collections.
The Fall 2014 collection – the one we had a glorious, if fleeting, sneak peek of back in March – showcases Louboutin’s love of versatility, as well as his total adoration of fabulous, ankle-breaking heights.
Lovely floral prints, delicate laser cut filigree and strappy styles in both classic and rich suedes harken back to the iconic Louboutin image that grab celebrity ambassadors by the handful. Our favorite twist on the classic? Louboutin’s ingenious use of crackled metallic leather; we’d call it the new snakeskin, but judging from his pristine use of python in some of the other designs, we have to consider the gorgeous crackled metallic in a league all of its own.
One of the most notable silhouette additions comes from the dramatically corset-laced sculpted pumps, first seen on the Fall 2014 Marchesa runway. Initially inspired by ballet, the Conquilla lace-up concave wedges are one part kink and two parts “please get in my closet, now.” However, those aren’t the only soles to make a massive visual impact; for example, the Pigalle Follies Strass are crystal-studded masterpieces that we would possibly give up croissants for life in order to have. We also see candy-colored studs used elsewhere, both complementing metallic hues and floating atop of clear PVC.
Other gotta-look-twice features of the collection include lattice-like laser cut suede, oversized grommets accented with whipstitch trim and glitter infused sheer fishnet.
The brand that has forever cemented red-lacquered soles and Christian Louboutin’s legacy into the Fashion Dictionary (chicly sandwiched between Chloé and Coco Chanel) has done it yet again. Whether you’re a woman who gravitates to Louboutin’s classic and sleek designs, or if the mixed media Aztec, Galata, and Gortik designs are right up your edgy alley, this legendary designer has got you covered.
Allegra cut-out sandal bootie in leather & suede with a 120mm heel and front tie fastening; as seen on Marion Cotillard
Allenissima open-toe slingback in black leather & patent leather with a 130mm heel
Lamadone knee-high lace up boot in black leather with a 120mm heel; Plakamina boot with peek-a-boo fishnet panels in black suede & merlot plus a 120mm heel; Tinafrange black suede fringe boot with a 120mm heel
Nicholas Kirkwood is a shooting star in the high fashion footwear world and soaring ever higher – if you’re not familiar with his eponymous brand, chances are you know and lust after his footwear designs for Peter Pilotto, Roksanda Ilincic, Erdem, Fendi, Rodarte, and Pollini. Unsurprisingly, the brand has jumped up on the “Must Have, Must Love” list after LVMH purchased a majority stake in the company last year, reflected in the skyrocketing sales and sudden attention from acclaimed stylists. His fabulous shoes appear on the red carpet regularly, donned by Hollywood starlets and certified celebrities alike; from Kiernan Shipka to Cate Blanchett, from Lupita Nyong’o to Saoirse Ronan, it wouldn’t be a star studded sartorial affair without a pair of Kirkwood’s not-quite-classic heels making an appearance.
A majority of the shoes are designed in a stunning leather filigree of ornate laser cut leather that really adds a punch of glamour and edge to the collection. Stating that he was inspired by the luxurious history of Morocco, those laser cut designs channel hand-painted tiles and motifs. Secondarily, Kirkwood took inspiration from one of the hottest trends in high fashion right now: sportswear. When talking to Nordstrom about the strong influence of Technicolor fabric and lace-up straps he stated, “there’s a sporty ’70s vibe that features high-tech low soles.”
The collection also plays with texture such as woven silk in neon green, brightly dyed raffia, and elaborate jacquards contrasted against metallic snakeskin. Heels vary in shape from streamline to sleek, chunky to jagged – some of the heels even include signature hidden details, like a pearl nesting under the heel or a unique triangle silhouette. If that’s the way Nicholas Kirkwood views the spring and summer season, we definitely can’t complain! It’s a festive collection that makes a statement in every sole.
If you want a Kirkwood pump that is safe to wear in an office setting – because life is sadly not all soirées and chic brunches – he’s got you covered! His trademark metallic pinheel pump makes an appearance in luscious colors such as emerald, bronze, and blazing red; those dynamic colors will provide versatility year ‘round, whether paired with a summer dress or woolen slacks. We can’t deny the appeal of a perfect heel that can take you from day-to-night with ease.
For years Nicholas Kirkwood has been building an impressive repertoire of fashion awards, we’re absolutely stoked that he’s gaining the popularity and recognition that he deserves. We can’t wait to see where he takes his flourishing label next!
Fiery red patent leather sandal with clear PVC side straps; available at Saks Fifth Avenue
When you think of Manolo Blahnik, your mind most likely turns to Carrie Bradshaw’s adoration and incredibly stocked closet of the esteemed brand. After all, his shoes are so gorgeous that the fiction fashion icon proclaimed, “I wanted to let you know that I’m getting married; to myself. I’m registered at Manolo Blahnik.” Since his first collection debut in 1972, Spanish-born Manuel “Manolo” Blahnik Rodriguez has brought classical elegance back to the forefront of fashion.
His legend status makes it even more surprising that the Spring 2014 collection was the first to show during a fashion week. “Everything is becoming so transparent,” the 71-year-old designer started, “with all this technology, with the blogs and tweets, and I wanted to get more in touch with normal people.” Luckily for us, that meant showcasing his luscious collection during London Fashion Week.
Inspired by the turn of the 20th century, the collection is filled with costume jewelry embellishments, vibrant colors, and a flair for the dramatic. Truly, the use of color blocking, tiered satin, and pleated silk harkens back to a time where women gladly spent a third of the household income on fashion and frippery. The modern twist? The use of braided leather and hyper-futuristic mesh ensure that the collection doesn’t become too stuffy. We especially love the use of tassels and the elaborate embroidery on many of the mules and kitten heels – they embrace Spanish history in only a way a Spaniard could. It might be over forty years since his first collection, but his attraction to sophistication and decadence has never wavered.
If you want to see this gorgeous collection in motion, Manolo Blahnik’s first feature film entitled Jealousy! showcases the old glamor collection beautifully. The silent film embraces the decadence and drama that epitomizes the era from which he drew inspiration, bringing it to the modern day.
If his mainline collection is a little too old world for your tastes, there is a very good chance that the fantastic and minimalist designs he created for Osman, Victoria Beckham, and Richard Nicoll’s collections are perfect for your wardrobe.
Agapax d’Orsay pump in leather & suede with a whipstitch trim and long leather ankle-wrap laces
Aghatax bootie with a striped canvas heel and multicolor suede fringe front panel