Once you get your hands…errr…we mean your feet rather, into these shoes, prepare to immediately group message your girlfriends because you’d want to party plan, stat. But not just any party. You’d want a fancy soiree that screams Alice in Wonderland, Marie Antoinette, fairy tale balls, English gardens, quirky hats, parasols and sipping tea with pinkies in the air –that’s how whimsical the collection is. And don’t be embarrassed if you suddenly want to conjure up a butler who announces: “Your carriage awaits, Madam.”
Liudmila founder Najeeba was inspired by photos of the Nizams of Hyderabad –the Indian rulers of the Mughal Empire. Even if they were just re-touched photographs, she was captivated by the images of the abandoned palaces and perhaps, imagined all the exciting events that took place in such magnificent party playgrounds. Najeeba then created a color palette that seemingly paints the story of royals who were always ready to celebrate. Pearlescent leather in jewel and candy-like hues such as pink, purple, baby blue, silver and ivory –all exude opulence that is eminently approachable.
Najeeba ensures that her heels never go above 100 mm because she believes shoes should enhance and not hinder your life. But where it lacks in height, it makes up for statement-making style.
Channel your inner Disney Princess when you slip into the Mame ankle- strap sandals in periwinkle or blush suede, adorned with a chunky crystal and ostrich feathers. Or shoe gems like the Sari –curved platform wedges in amethyst or bubblegum pink satin, with gold or silver tassels you can tie around your ankles or up your calf –for the warrior princesses out there, perhaps? The delicately-sloped Piali kitten heels in gold or silver nappa are charmingly tied with floral-printed bows –like little presents for playful ballerinas.
And if princesses were to saddle up their horses, there’s the Juba short boot with a 50 mm heel, a dainty lilac pearl color and a fun cut-out design at the front. Not that you’ll need any mode of transportation, really. These fantastic shoes were made for walking (you’d want to find opportunities to flaunt them all the time, anyway).
Who needs Prince Charming when you can get your happy ever after with these precious shoes?
About the author: Romina Tobias is a freelance fashion and lifestyle writer who is also a hopeless shoe-addict. She thinks her 5’4″ height and her love for long walks make her deserving of all the stilettos, pumps, sandals and ballet flats in the world. If only the cupcakes she expertly bakes can be traded in for a new pair (or two, or hopefully, more).
Holland Roden wore CasadeiEvening sandals to the premiere of ‘American Ultra’ held at Ace Theater in LA. They feature mirrored gold leather, swirly cage design, a thin platform and sculpted Blade heel. Evening is available in glossy black patent leather at Harrods and in black & nude patent leather at Farfetch.
Kate Beckinsale was spotted at the LAX airport wearing Casadei for Prabal Gurung Blade wedges. They’re from the Spring 2013 collection featuring black patent leather & mesh silver studded straps, pointed-toe and sculpted 115mm Blade wedge heel. These heels are available on sale in white leather at Yoox.
Outfit Details: Sleeveless cropped top paired with drawstring trousers, Oliver Givenchy Pandora tote and Goldsmith Manhattan 1960 sunglasses.
Gianvito Rossi was named Designer of the Year last week at the Footwear News Achievement Awards. 2013 was undoubtedly “his year” and I myself wanting to fill the entire ‘Shop’ section with his designs! Both Resort & Spring ’14 styles are quickly appearing online and he’s cranking out one hit after another.
He’s the son of renowned footwear designer Sergio Rossi and shoemaking is in his blood. Gianvito has created shoes every woman wants by blending high-luxe Italian craftsmanship with an understated elegance. After launching his namesake line almost six years ago, Rossi’s classic single-shoe shoes have finally taken center stage.
I love what he said in a recent interview with WWD about his flourishing footwear fame, “It seems like fashion is [shifting] to my point of view”. Rossi opts for “timelessness instead of just trendy” and those are the kind of shoes we can hold on to for decades.
We will have a review of the full Spring 2014 collection published soon but until then, here’s a look at my favorite new arrivals:
Milan Fashion Week is basically synonymous with stellar, gorgeous, and innovated shoes. Season after season, we can rely on them to amp up the footwear game with unexpected influences and executions. Spring 2014 was no exception, as each show seemed to have shoes that screamed “buy me, buy me!” as they were strut down the catwalk. Without further ado, here is your Milan Fashion Week footwear recap:
To celebrate his growing rapport with hip hop and R&B icons like Ciara, Rita Ora, and Rihanna, Peter Dundas’ latest Emilio Pucci collection is a heady combination of streetwise sportiness and opulent elegance. Perforated leather and SCUBA-inspired shaping goes head-to-head with ornate Masai embroidery in sporty lace-up booties, resulting in a shoe collection that is equal parts unique and energetic.
Thin and strappy was the name of the footwear game on Roberto Cavalli’s catwalk. Dazzling sandals were fitted with meticulously braided and knotted leather straps and laces of varying lengths, sitting overtop a sturdy stacked heel. Additionally, the muted and neutral color palette of the shoes make these gorgeous soles perfectly fit for most flouncy and flirty spring outfits.
When we think of Versace, we usually think of a punk-infused, revealing glamor. Even at their most studded and patent leathered, Versace shoes tend to be edgy and sleek. This season, Donatella did a 180° twist from what we normally expect, presenting us a shoe collection centered on a clunky-soled sandal with silver-tone buckles situated on elastic straps piped with leather. We can’t say whether or we like this direction from their design team, but judging how celebrities are already wearing the designs out and about – Lady Gaga was spotted in a lavender pair – we’re sure this will be a commercial success.
Anna Molinari’s latest Blumarine collection was all about balancing the desire to be innocent and the urge to be a provocateur. On one hand, the sandals were dainty, polite, and sweet – perfect for picaresque picnics with friends, or a mid-morning brunch with family; the slight platform was as far as the edge went. The other hand? Dramatically strapped snakeskin booties, embellished with near-gaudy gems and with a dramatically pointed toe. The duality of the collection makes it commercially viable, a pair for every personality type.
This spring collection was all about revisiting the Etro archives, so it isn’t surprising that the shoes spotted on the runway evoke a classic, timeless feel to them. Etro’s signature patterned fabrics, which we have come to know and love, could be spotted the embellished straps of sandals and delicate pumps. Metallic finishes brought them into the modern era, but the line still maintained a ‘70s party allure.
Like Versace and Emilio Pucci, Gucci’s line was heavily inspired by sports. While it isn’t quite as literal as Pucci, we saw three different styles on the runway – ribbon slashed heels, cut-out pumps, and strappy sandal-booties – with differing variations of python, leather, and suede. The illustrations of Erté and the era of Art Nouveau were the inspirations of the collection and we can see that showing through with the pops of marigold, merlot, mid-tone purple, and forest green. Our only problem with collection is that it felt very autumnal and heavy for a spring collection.
Season after season, Prada creates shoes that blogging fashionistas fawn over. Miuccia Prada is a designer that revels in the ugly, loves taking risks, and is a regular in the world of art-fashion. The high rubber sporty heels of this collection were typical of what we expect – mashed-up themes, vibrant primary colors, thick straps, oddball color blocking, and massive rhinestones bejeweled onto every available surface. They’re bizarre and they’re statement making, just how we like our Prada lines.
If Kaiser Karl’s last Fendi line didn’t reignite your love of the architectural aspects of fashion, we’re not sure what to tell you – the shoes presented on the runway were nothing short of stellar. Set upon industrial caged “double heels,” delicate interlocking straps of metallic, patent, and lizard leather were offset by an ingenious use of semi-sheer PVC and gemstones. In his apparel, he layered organza to create unique and stunning motifs; in his shoes, he used thin PVC to replicate the effect, creating an image of varying opacity. When he wasn’t doing that, he was using the vivid colored plastic to mold dramatic angles and pyramidal crevices. There was a whimsical and modern air to Fendi this season, Karl Lagerfeld has reassured us again that he is a visionary.
Dolce & Gabbana
On the spring 2014 runways, it was business as usual for iconic Italian brand Dolce & Gabbana. Those who grow tired of Domenico Dolce and Stefano Gabbana’s use of Sicilian culture and Italian iconography in their collections don’t understand that those ties to the Mediterranean are so ingrained within their brand’s DNA that to not include the images would not be Dolce & Gabbana. It’s a gaudy overabundance that we have come to expect, a sort of literal inspiration – like the rhinestone embellished gladiator sandal, the platform pump set upon an ionic column, the wedge studded with Roman coins – that makes us smile. It’s an artisanal workmanship that turns away from the phrase “less is more,” opting for embroidery, embellishment, and vivid colors.
As if to balance the theme of overabundance in Milan this season, Costume National went for soles that were strikingly minimalistic. To match the deconstructed tailoring of the collection, the footwear feels distinctly practical with a unique edge. There is something in the dramatic point of the closed-toe, the exaggerated slope of the foot, and the color finishes – mostly monochromatic, but we can’t get enough of the woodgrain-inspired pattern on some of the shoes – that make this a unique and downright cool shoe collection.
Jil Sander’s footwear collection was among the more classically inspired from Milan Fashion Week, with focus primarily on breathing new life into the classic oxford. How? Well, with a massively chunky wooden platform heel, of course. The flats on the runway were also not-quite-flat, elevated by an inch or two of platform (flatforms, we like to call them) that drew attention to the added height with the use of dichromatic color blocking. Dove grey, stark white, black, and taupe were the stars of the color palette.
For their spring collection, Salvatore Ferragamo stayed within a muted and soft color palette. Save for the occasional use of black, this season was about an earthy-toned romanticism based in neutral snake skins and soft beiges. Boxy shapes and square toes were innovated by tiny eyelets and nailhead studs skattered along the snakeskin, internal metal plating, external seaming along the ridges, and unique, double-take worthy flared heels. We even love the exaggeration of the edges with the large buckles, it’s a high fashion pilgrim look that we can’t wait to spot on savvy style stars.
Monique Lhuillier lace pump | 100mm/4″ heel | shop online at Shopbop for $795
Finally Lhuillier’s debut shoe collection finally appears! These Spring 2013 ankle-cuff pumps feature delicate sheer floral black lace, black suede trim, high-back collar cuff with a thin suede ankle-strap and speckled suede heel. Half sizes are available.
Jessica Paré is featured in the July 2013 issue of S Moda wearing Christian Dior ankle-strap pumps. These Fall 2013 shoes feature black suede, thin wrap around ankle-strap and 108mm sculpted heel. Sofia Vergara also wore these in Harper’s Bazaar.
The Canadian actress who stars as Megan Draper on ‘Mad Men’ posed for the Spanish magazine wearing three different looks including leather & lace. Jessica said this Davidelfin blue number “Looks like he has designed it for me, fits me like a glove”. It’s from the Spring 2013 collection with a pleated skirt, white collar and currently on sale.
Casadei wooden heel pump | 120mm/4.75″ heel | shop online at Shopbop & Amazon for $620.00
This Fall 2013 style features glossy black patent leather, grosgrain piped trim and gilded golden thick block-shaped wooden heel. The slight bulbous pointed-toe reminds me of Giuseppe Zanotti design from the Fall 2012 collection. Half sizes are available.
Candice Swanepoel is featured in the August 2013 issue of Vogue Russia wearing Manolo BlahnikTacitus heels. They’re from the Fall 2013 collection featuring black suede, lace- up front closure and multiple slingback straps.
The South African supermodel posed wearing a black croc-embossed patent leather bralet by Azzedine Alaïa, Rochas floral jacquard pencil skirt and Philipp Plein Flower Power leather jacket. Candice also accessorized with lots of silver jewelry including Pomellato bangles, Maria Tash rings and Shaun Leane ring.
Sofia Vergara is featured in the August 2013 issue of Harper’s Bazaar wearing Christian Dior heels. These Fall 2013 shoes feature black suede, thin wrap around ankle-strap and sculpted heel. This style is not yet at retail but you can shop current Dior styles at FarFetch and Colette.
She’s gearing up for Season 5 of ‘Modern Family’ and also promoting her new film, ‘Machete Kills’ which premieres this October. Sofia posed for photographer Terry Richardson wearing a red trench also from Dior’s Fall 2013 collection paired with Harry Winston diamond earrings.