Top Retail Executives Select Key Women’s Shoe Trends for Fall ’15

Topping the women’s footwear trends for fall ’15 are short boots, man tailored looks and lower, blocky heels. Here, some key footwear executives weigh in on the hot styles for the season.

“The ’70s influence from spring ’15 will carry over in the dominant use of suede in a range of saturated colors. We love hues of red, navy and gray that feel right in leather and suede. Boots, from booties to high shafts, continue to be important, especially with the changing pant and skirt lengths. Details like block or embellished heels and a more rounded toe feel fresh. Active will continue, while the menswear influence is present, with a new focus on the loafer. Heels and pumps remain relevant, and I’m loving the updates, with ankle lacing, fringe or fur trims adding an element of surprise.” Erica Russo, Operating Vice President & Fashion Director, Accessories, Bloomingdale’s

“We expect to see a whole array of tannery browns, sometimes combined with dark forest greens or Bordeaux, with hits of electric purple or shocking pink for excitement. Expect loads of suede with color and material blocking. Sparkle will continue in all categories. The theme around comfort continues. High heels are blocked, but lower, with more feminine options. Heels will look more chic and refined. Flats are not going away anytime soon as sporty slides and kicks continue to dominate the casual market. We also expect to see more taller boots than we have in past markets.” Suzanne Timmins, SVP & Fashion Director, Hudson’s Bay and Lord & Taylor

“No. 1 is ankle boots with lots of ornamentation — buckles, straps and zippers. Also continuing are chunkier looks in boots, such as Dr. Martens grunge-style looks, which are going to have a resurgence. [Color-wise], gray will peak. It’s been around, and we’ve had success with it. And our customers want quality brands that are authentic, such as Birkenstock and Frye.” Garrett Breton, VP of Merchandising & Marketing, Comfort One Shoes, Manassas, Va.

“The athletic trend will continue to gain momentum. Every brand does its version of a trainer or sneaker. It reflects the movement to a more active and casual lifestyle. We’re also seeing a bit of a ’70s feeling with platforms and some ’60s inspiration with the mod boot, from a flat to a chunky heel and [silhouettes] from the ankle to the knee. Metallics include iridescent, and there are skins in colors.” Colleen Sherin, VP & Fashion Director, Saks Fifth Avenue

“We’re looking for boots and booties. The Western influence is also happening, whether it’s an under-slung heel or toe character. Athletic is still a big fashion trend. Our customers are wearing fashion jogging [clothes] and dressing them up. No matter what happens color-wise, it’s still always about black. Also, [look for] touches of skins.” David Jassem, President, David’s Shoes, Beverly Hills, Calif.

“Man-tailored continues to be strong. We’ve seen it in oxfords, loafers, hikers and chukkas. The double monk strap is an emerging trend, on heels to oxfords and even sneakers. In boots, shafts are coming down, a reflection of the weather over the past few years. There are more mid-calf boots, ankle boots and booties for fall.” Stephanie Cuen, Assistant Buyer, Zappos.com

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