Barneys New York Fashion Director Amanda Brooks has already noted several standout shoe styles for 2012.
“We are seeing a shift toward a 1990s-inspired, single-sole pump silhouette à la Manolo Blahnik,” said Brooks, noting, however, that platforms and unique heel treatments still have a presence. “Celine introduced a new take on the platform shoe, Alexander Wang showed great novelty in his lug-sole monk-strap oxfords, and Prada embraced a 1970s-inspired mule with a chunkier heel. And, of course, Christian Louboutin always embraces and even creates many of the key shoe trends each season.”
Also on the horizon this year, said retailers, are mules and flats, as seen with evolved oxfords, loafers and creepers.
For Elizabeth Kanfer, fashion and co-branding director of accessories at Saks Fifth Avenue, spring will be all about ankle-strap sandals and wedges with mixed materials, cork and wood. Then fall, she said, will be dominated by velvet and suede styles in burgundy, forest green, deep navy, luggage brown and gold.
“The entire market has moved forward to show more sophisticated and elevated collections,” Kanfer said. “We are excited about the amount of emerging talent in the footwear industry.”
Of particular note are leading ladies Charlotte Olympia Dellal and Tabitha Simmons, said Neiman Marcus SVP and Fashion Director Ken Downing. “They are names fashion insiders love and names the fashion curious will crave.”
Simmons made Brooks’ list, too, as did Gianvito Rossi. Though not entirely new to Barneys’ fashion-forward shoe roster, these names will make waves in 2012, Brooks said. “They are both standout talents with big futures,” she said.
Also on Barneys’ hot list this year? Brooks named mid-heels as an area ripe for continued growth. “We also love the highly designed everyday shoes, such as rainboots and espadrilles, which our customer really responds to.”