Footwear designer Ruthie Davis had a front-row seat at Dennis Basso to watch her patent peeptoe pumps with metal bolt heels power down the runway. The designer worked with Basso and the show’s stylist, Patti Wilson, to create footwear for the catwalk that would serve as a counterpoint and “spice up” Basso’s more classic fashions. “When I design shoes, they tend to be edgy,” Davis said, “but I personally like a clean classic upper with the shoes as the statement.” According to Davis, the purple colorway was exclusive to Dennis Basso, but her soft gold “platino” hue will soon be sold at Neiman Marcus. A launch party in January at the retailer’s Beverly Hills, Calif., location will introduce the spring collection, her first to be picked up by the department store.
Adele Clark, who designed Preen’s footwear for the catwalk this season, said the collaboration came together organically. “We had a discussion exploring the wrapping and twisting ideas that they were already working with, and I took it on from there. … You don’t often get the chance to experiment with shoes that will actually go into the shops.” As for her vision for the styles, Clark said, “Preen’s designs are very modern and sexy. I find them quite dynamic, almost futuristic. I wanted the shoes to reflect this and to keep that feeling of movement.” Unusual for runway footwear, the designers decided to produce the entire collection. “We were only going to put some of the show styles into production, but we liked them all, so we ended up making them all,” Clark said.
Other footwear designers with styles on the runway included Nicholas Kirkwood for Rodarte, Loeffler Randall at Costello Tagliapietra, Finsk at Ports 1961, Alexandre Birman at Richard Chai, LD Tuttle at VPL, Eileen Sheilds at Zero + Maria Cornejo and Carlos by Carlos Santana at Venexiana. Lisa Pliner, who designed the footwear at Gottex, summed up her excitement, “It’s an overwhelming and incredible feeling to just start a collection and to watch 30 women walk the runway in your shoes.”
Vogue editor-turned-footwear designer Tabitha Simmons mingled with customers and fans at Bergdorf Goodman’s second-floor shoe salon last Tuesday to fête the introduction of her fall collection. “I wanted to create timeless styles, not one-season wonders. For this season, I reacted to what I had in my wardrobe with a focus on wearability.” For spring, the Brit, who now lives stateside, said she introduced more flats, as well as colors and light platforms. “Nothing too chunky,” Simmons said. On her experience during Fashion’s Night Out, she said, “We had to go eight places! It was a long tour, but quite fun.”
The big screen has always been an influence for fashion designers, so during Fashion Week, Turner Classic Movies opted to celebrate the colliding worlds of fashion and film. With Manolo Blahnik’s guidance, the network announced its 15 favorite trendsetting films to mark the company’s 15th anniversary. The iconic titles included “Auntie Mame” (1958), “Breakfast at Tiffany’s” (1961), “Flashdance” (1983) and “Rebel Without a Cause” (1955). Of James Dean’s utterly cool character in the last flick, Blahnik said, “Even I had his red biker jacket.”
Inès de la Fressange swooped into town last week to co-host a cocktail party for Roger Vivier’s royally themed fall collection, held at the luxe label’s Madison Avenue boutique. Although she was in the city for little more than 24 hours, the Vivier brand ambassador managed to pack in a lot. “I found a new boot designer downtown [Vogel], had lunch with a friend and even went to Abercrombie & Fitch to get T-shirts for my daughters,” said de la Fressange, who talked with guests including co-host Samantha Boardman, Emanuele Della Valle, Poppy Delevigne and Rita Konig.