Just call him Dr. Van Noten.
For spring ’17, the designer sent out a bevy of sandals during Paris Fashion Week that were equal parts kabuki and seemingly inspired by that great icon of foot health: one Dr. Scholl’s. Of course, they were intelligently reimagined to be the most elegant version of their former self possible.
Black wooden lacquer soles had short block heels. Uppers were done in black jet beading, some of them as Geisha flip-flops. While the collection had slight Japanese undertones, the references were subtle and thoughtfully skewed. Oh, and walkable, too. Van Noten has never been one for overwrought antics.
There were also draped fabric high-heel sandals and dark pumps with tonal fleurs affixed to the ankle. They picked up on the collection’s major flourish: flora prints. The runway was even lined with frozen blooms suspended in large slabs of ice. As they melted, it could have been a slippery mess. But no. Eerily calm models walked through the pooling puddles nary a slip. The tension of hot and cold, liquid and solid, hard and effortless seemed suddenly metaphoric.