The Reaction: London Fashion Week

While the fashion pack is now focused on the Milan collections, there were plenty of standout shoes in London this week.

Here, two top retailers weigh in on their hot picks for fall.

Creative director, The Room at The Hudson Bay Co.

Strongest trends:
“The shoes I saw on the runway all seemed to highlight the ankle booties, T-straps, ankle straps and ankle ties. ‘Lady’ seems to be key as well, primarily ‘vintage lady’ as seen on the T-straps at Christopher Kane, which were aggressive with leather-wrapped ankles and slightly squared toes. Marios Schwab used chic single-sole T-straps with a pointy toe. Christian Louboutin’s collaborations with both Mary Katrantzou and Mark Fast also presented a very ladylike vision.”

Most directional label:
“The boots at Erdem by Nicholas Kirkwood were super interesting. The laminated tweed coupled with an edgy Lucite detail at the heel played well with Erdem’s ladylike silhouettes.”

New for fall:
“It’s interesting to see this shift to ultra-conservative lines that still maintain something slightly off-kilter with a sense of bad-girl excitement.”

Fall 12 buying strategy:
“I am attracted to brands or designers expressing a vision of newness, or at least have collections that start some sort of conversation. In addition to Nicholas Kirkwood and Charlotte Olympia, I looked at two other new brands that will answer that call.”

Accessories buyer, Browns
Strongest trends:

“Texture, with lace, glitter or rich suede, [is] definitely an important trend in shoes. Boots — all sorts of boots.”

Must-carry styles:
 • A statement boot either brightly printed or textured with lace or pleated print fabric, [as seen at] Peter Pilotto
• A touch of glitter, [as seen at] Meadham Kirchhoff
• Color-blocked shoes in Mary Jane styles, [as seen at] Erdem and Roksanda Ilincic

Most directional label:
“Rupert Sanderson has introduced a directional new boot shape — [fashion-forward] but practical with a chunky heel and architectural toe shape.”

Fall 12 buying strategy:
“It is our goal to find the very best biker boot, the best evening pump and so on. It is my observation that people want value in this tough economic climate. Women will now refrain from buying the same three pairs of shoes that would only work in their wardrobes once or twice a season.”

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