Archive for the 'Trendspotter' Category

28
Jan
10

Live Nude Shoes

Following the Spring 2010 runways shows, Vogue reported, “The big story for summer is nudity — the vast majority of shows opened with nude, ice-cream colours, making cut and drapery the big style statements as opposed to eye-popping colours.” And, while flesh-toned shoes did make a showing for summer ’09 as well, they’re back.

Listed among the spring trends at Neiman Marcus: Nude shoes. They’re available on the high end (like these Louboutin cutout booties):

Christian Louboutin's Cutout Bootie

And in the mere mortal price range: “Pierre Hardy continues to design shoes for Gap, for summer 2010,” blogger Nitrolicious writes. “The shoes retails for $98 and will be available at select Gap stores on May 4th. I’m not too sure about the shoes at the moment, would need a better look in person before I decide if I want them or not. Your thoughts?”

Pierre Hardy for Gap

The sole comment thus far, from “Stylish”: “Love the nude cork wedges…perfect for summer with white dresses.”

Easy wedges not your style? Obsessed With Shoes notes Fendi’s summer collection 2010 sandals, which seem to wrap the foot, all Grecian-like, in swaths of pantyhose. “They are simple sandals covered with lightweight mesh material that wraps around the ankle, with lots of extra material for an extra bulky bow,” the blogger writes. “The interesting aspect of the shoe, is the transparent platform, of course. It gives the shoe a futuristic, utilitarian look.

Fendi sandals

“Nude shoes make your legs look miles long. We love it!” enthuses About.com in a tutorial on how to wear the color. Need more inspiration? Style blog What She Wears suggests, “If you’re after a sharp, sophisticated look, the best fit shoe wise would be nude shoes. To be specific; patent, peep toe shoes in a nude colour (also referred to as camel or beige).”

Yep, nude is the new black. And why not? Black, by the time warm weather rolls around, is the absolute last thing anyone wants to wear. And white shoes: Let’s face it, unless you’re 10 years old and attending an Easter egg hunt, or a member of The Strokes, white shoes are pretty ridiculous. Nude, taupe, cream, egg shell, ecru and beige are not just for kitchen appliances anymore: Turns out those skin-colored neutrals make for go-with-everything footwear.

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28
Jan
10

The Labradoodle of Shoes

It’s safe to assume that when the first designer dog breeders uttered the word Labradoodle, they got some skeptical looks.

But skeptical looks clearly became uncontrollable grins as naysayers were faced with the ridiculously adorable results of puppy love between a Lab and a Poodle.

Thus, we in the world of shoe breeding have accepted the shoe/ bootie hybrid–the shootie–with similar enthusiasm. Lately though, I sense a new designer shoe hybrid entering the scene to steal our hearts.

The simple sling-back pump crossed with the classic clog:

+

Right now there are some great results from Jeffrey Campbell,

and Clarks.

Plus a vintagey version from Nina Z, that my ahead-of-the-curve roommie turned me on to.

As for eBay, you size 6.5s can check out a pair of Ariats; 8’s, you can find Danskos; and 7.5s, there are some hot DKNY platforms.

But before we run out in our new wooden-soled works of art. What to call them? Clings?

Photo via.

29
Dec
09

Tess Tuesday: Combat Boots on Trend

I bought a pair of vintage combat boots around this time last year. Upon spotting them, I thought they were cool and edgy and they gave me a bit of nostalgia for the last time they were in style. (I rocked them in the fourth grade.) So, quite pleased with myself, I skipped home to show them to my roommates. I didn’t even much like having roommates, but I will always treasure this ritual of ours. Fine, it was just my ritual– no one else liked showing off her new purchases. One of the guys once showed us a new DVD though, and I made sure to give it a lot of praise.

Anyway, I was used to the unveiling of my new finds being met with oohs and ahs. The combat boots however, were met with an uncomfortable silence and a cough for comedic effect to cut the palpable awkwardness of the uncomfortable silence. I was shocked! These boots were so cool. I tried to explain to my roommate how I would wear them and what I loved about them, but it was in vain. They refused to agree with my taste. I forged on though, and wore them out of the apartment in front of my closest friends, only to be met with ridicule. To be fair, my closest friends are allowed to ridicule me and I them, which is why now I can say to them, “Ha ha, look who’s wearing them now!”

There you have it–they are in fact a trend. So as not to give myself too much credit, I will admit that although mine were vintage, I picked them up at Urban Outfitters. They’re great for balancing an ultra feminine look, they flatter the legs in skinny jeans, and they exude an air of bad ass no matter what you pair them with. They’re all around winners and I think, due to their versatility and undeniable chic factor, that they’re here to stay.

My latest pick, the J. Shoes Meadow Combat Boot, have the added detail of ribbon laces for a feminine contrast. Love ‘em.

23
Dec
09

Clear & Present: See-Through for Spring

“I can see “clearly” now: Prada’s 2010 spring summer show features clear plastic heels, bags and shades,” writes social diarist The Daily Truffle. “This post is … about the re- occurring theme of plastic, vinyl, and crystal accessories. What caught my attention about the accessories of this collection, was the repetition and cohesiveness of the designs. The shoes, sunglasses, and purses all fit together beautifully.”

Prada, for Spring 2010

As The Daily Truffle points out, Prada is not to the only designer who brought clear plastic accessories to the Spring 2010 runway shows. Chanel and Michael Kors followed suit, though these are a far cry from the the inexpensive plastic “jelly” sandals that dominated beaches in the 80s (and experiences a resurgence a few years ago).

Michael Kors

“Michael Kors designed a sleek and architectural shoe collection for his Spring/Summer 2010 collection,” writes blogger Obsessed with Shoes. “They had a very polished and clean look in basic colors like black or white. Clear plastic was a key component in this collection, and while that can sometimes cheapen a look, that wasn’t the case for Michael Kors.”

Prada collection, images from InStyle.com

In the January issue of W Magazine, Prada’s clear (clearly expensive, that is) heels make a showing in the extensive Spring Fashion spread.

Christian Louboutin's Engin spikes

Even Christian Louboutin jumped on the bandwagon with a pair of peep-toe pumps. The soles are the ubiquitous Louboutin red; the toes are clear plastic with silver cone studs. “Don’t be jealous about the Christian Louboutin men’s spring/summer 2010 collection, the women’s collection is just as good if not better,” enthuses blogger Nitrolicious. (Though one commenter noted, “I just don’t dig the clear plastic on shoes; is it ever flattering? Sorry, not these Loubs for this kid.”)

27
Nov
09

GoodShop & Give Back on Black Friday & Beyond

How would you like to pump up your Black Friday buying power and give back to nonprofits in need at no extra cost to you? Well, if you do click over to GoodShop before you hit over 900 online stores, you can take advantage of stash of coupons. It only takes a few extra seconds and up to 30% of your purchases will be donated to the nonprofit of your choice. (There are over 85,000 charitable organizations registered with the site.)

Trust me, I realize that this sounds suspiciously like a scam but my dance organization, Monkeyhouse,  has worked with this site for three years. Checks really do arrive each fall and somehow they are always slightly larger than we were expecting.  In fact, Monkeyhouse just received another Goodshop donation on Monday.  I am so encouraged by this passive revenue stream that I have personally offered to match all the money that Monkeyhouse earns through GoodShop in November and December.

GoodShop has teamed up with over 180 participating shoe stores, and they have got deals for you whether you are into stilettos, sneakers, or retro roller skates. For instance, if  you got inspired by Shoetube’s recent Tess Tuesday post,

you could cut $10 off a $100 purchase and send 6.5 – 8% to your favorite school, charity, or religious organization with GoodShop.

Or, if Wendy’s romp through nostalgia reminded you to revamp your running shoes, you could save 20% if you rush to GoodShop by 11/29/09. But don’t worry if you miss out on that deal’s deadline, there are several other coupons and they will always kick back 4-8.5%  of your total to a worthy nonprofit.

Even if you have got to get golf shoes after this week’s Quick Fix, you can support your favorite cause by swinging by GoodShop beforehand.

So hop on over to GoodShop and discover how easy it is to give this holiday season.

27
Nov
09

DIY: Design It Yourself

Here’s a little something for all the Do It Yourselfers out there: Design Your Own Shoes sites. Thanks to About.com blogger Desiree Stimpert, we’ve all been introduced to Shoes of Prey, an online shops that boasts it “creates beautiful bespoke women’s shoes, designed by you.”

My first design attempt at Shoes Of Prey

Here’s how it works, according to the company: “You choose the heel, toe, fabric, color and embellishments. Our expert craftsmen then make your shoes to measure, swaddle them in a soft dust bag and crisp new box, and ship them straight to your waiting feet.”

Reports Stimpert, “I had a lot of fun playing with the design tool, and was surprised at how many combinations were possible. But the biggest — and most pleasant — surprise is the price: most shoes cost about …$215 U.S. dollars, which is an incredible bargain for bespoke shoes.”

While Keds and Converse have been allowing shoppers to customize their kicks with color, print and style choices, self-directed dress shoes and heels have been the sole property of footwear designers. That’s changing.

One style possibility at Dream Heels

According to Luxist, Canadian company Dream Heels is offering novice designers/shoe lovers a chance to custom-create styles. “The designs are shown on the Dream Heels Web site and can be voted on. Each month a winning design is chosen. The creator receives $250 and a $250 Dream Heels gift certificate,” explains Luxist.

So far, all of the Dream Heels styles are the same — a pump — but the designs vary wildly from a rainbow stripe to a peacock print. Currently, 25 designs are in contention.

Finally, Glamour Magazine’s Slave to Fashion blog recently posted that “Online shoe retailer Zappos.com has teamed up with Steve Madden for Sole Search, a design competition that gives aspiring Louboutins a chance to share their towering vision with the world.” Aspiring designers can create a design from scratch or by using a downloadable Steve Madden template.

The Lauper, a popular design in Steve Madden's Sole Search competition

So far over 1800 entries have been submitted and there’s still another month of the competition. Check out the competition, review designs (the Lauper got raves like “These boots r amazing & so cool. I love them! I would love to have a pair!” — in fact, most reviews seem to be supportive) and submit your own ideas.

The grand prize: Steve Madden himself will select one of the three first prize winners’ designs (determined by votes on the Zappos site) to be produced and sold online at Zappos.com/Steve-Madden. There’s also a $500 Zappos.com gift card and a $500 Steve Madden gift card. Nice.

24
Nov
09

Reebok Pump on the Rise

Reebok threw a kickin party to celebrate 20 years of the pump last week. While it was easy to be wooed by the towering pro athlete presence of hosts Emmitt Smith and Dominique Wilkins, as well as the open bar and mini Pop Burgers, I’m all about the Pump.

To start, one of the new limited edition Pump X styles, designed by Boston sneaker retailer, Bodega, was sold via lottery this week to keep collectors from camping out in front of the store.

Reebok, whose entire staff was decked out in new retro versions of the custom fit shoe at the party, made sure to decorate the place in 90’s Pump posters that reminded me; the pump wasn’t just a basketball shoe. It was a tennis trainer, worn by great Michael Chang. It was also a running shoe, an aerobics shoe, a football shoe, the list goes on.

And now it’s a limited edition. Here are a few of my favorite designs from it’s exclusive 20th anniversary partnerships.

These work boot style sneakers are from Saint Alfred in Chicago.

The aforementioned Outback from Bodega.

A sleek, dark color combo from Huf in San Francisco.

A few more, displayed behind glass at the party, but not including the Parisian boutique, Colette’s design, covered by our trendspotter Alli, last week.

And the definitive Michael Chang poster. Just because I love the 90’s-ness of it.




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