The luxury designer — who always wows the Fashion Week crowd with his elegant, feminine designs — unveiled a Swarovski-adorned slide that will be perfect for next summer. The best part? It’s a two-in-one style. “You can wear it as a flat — or as jewelry for your beach or pool party,” he said. He also offered a striking metal chain version of the style. Elsewhere, stiletto sandals were paired with socks, while a new Plexi heel was introduced to match clutches. And an elegant laser-cut sandal featured a leopard heel.
“This is a collection for standing tall, unafraid and unbowed. I’ve focused on evoking a real drama in the structure, sculpting the forms and cut of the uppers and creating a harmonious balance in the proportion of the whole,” said creative director Sandra Choi, noting that the word “strength” was top of mind as she designed the spring collection. “There is glamour, of course, but the glamour is an irreverent expression of feminine power and self-determination.” Choi said she wanted to create drama out of the simple elements of a shoe. She modeled her modern take on the d’Orsay — a stretched silhouette with a sculptural block heel finished with a slick caramel patent leather. “It’s for the girl who wants to be able to move but who’s still standing tall and looking divine,” said Choi. Other standouts included a caged slingback with crystal appliqué, backless mules with buckled straps and a series of pointy-toe slingbacks. While the brand isn’t revealing photos of its dramatic new sneaker — out next month — they’re sure to be Instagram favorites. The bejeweled kicks feature a diamond-inspired translucent sole that took more than a month to develop.
Sergio Rossi CEO Riccardo Sciutto clearly understands how to create a Fashion Week experience. The Italian heritage brand — which has taken over historical Milan spaces for its presentations since it relaunched two years ago — unveiled its spring ’19 collection today in The Biblioteca Ambrosiana, a 17th-century library in Milan. Leather-clad books and art from Da Vinci and Caravaggio made for a captivating backdrop for the shoes, worn by models who appeared genuinely relaxed in the serene atmosphere. A series of white statement shoes — boots, mules and pumps — were adorned with fringe details and displayed alongside neoclassical busts.
“It’s everyday red carpet style.” That’s how Giuseppe Zanotti summed up his spring ’19 collection. The presentation had it all: sophisticated yet wearable heels, attention-grabbing crystal and floral embellishments — and Zanotti’s unexpected collab shoes with rising New York designer Christian Cowan. Zanotti also displayed his Michael Jackson “Tribute” sneakers and showed off the legendary musician’s original “Bad” jacket, which had its own bodyguard. Equally noteworthy was the designer’s expansion of the collection into more sophisticated daytime sandals and mules with lower heels. While Zanotti is often associated with glamorous evening looks, it’s clear the designer understands the opportunity to attract consumers who want a more versatile shoe.
“I wouldn’t call this fashion because we don’t do that,” said Giuseppe Santoni, CEO of Santoni at the label’s Milan Fashion Week presentation. “We’re about timeless pieces, things that stay in her closet for a long time. Luxury never goes out of style.” For spring, the “Santoni Edited by Marco Zanini” pieces hit on some key trends of the moment. Woven sandals and lace-up pumps were offered up in fluorescent orange, while an open-toe ankle boot popped in lime green. Standout strappy sandals from the main Santoni collection also incorporated neon accents in laminated gold and silver straps.
As the company marks its 60th anniversary, it unveiled a new heel, the Trio, which is composed of three rings that represent the past, present and future. It was featured in several looks, including a striking knee-high gladiator sandal, the biggest statement of the collection. The ’60s were a major inspiration for creative director Cesare Casadei, who played up glitter and metallic details in caged PVC sandals. Engagement ring-inspired gems embellished a series of flats and pool slides. A crystal bow from an archival collection with Victor & Rolf was reinterpreted and used on a single sole sandal. “I love seeing bows with simple sandals,” Casadei said.
Loafers and sneakers, embellished with fringes and studs, occupied a significant part of the spring collection. Buckles were heavily incorporated through Mary Janes, sneakers and flats. While technology remains a central focus, the company is introducing more fashion-forward designs into the collection. “Geox is known for its technology. We invented the breathable sole,” said founder Mario Polegato. “Women like technology, but first they are about the look.”
Like last season, the brand continued to roll out new interpretations of its classic Brera loafer. “This is the 50th anniversary of our tassel loafer, so you see it embroidered, stained, in many ways,” said Diego Rossetti. “This time we based the presentation around it.” The 65-year-old brand might be pushing heritage product, but it is also making sure it’s well-positioned for the future with a fresh focus on digital.
Sky-high metallic platforms with velvet bows stand out from Attico’s spring ’19 collection. “This is super-new for us. We’ve never done a platform before. We wanted to be extravagant and exaggerate with colors and materials, so we picked the most sparkly and shiny [elements] we could find. We wanted to go multicolor with mixed materials and a velvet bow — and of course a Swarovski buckle,” said designer Giorgia Tordini, who posed with Ambrosio for an FN video against the dramatic city backdrop.
Travel was the inspiration for the Giusti sisters this season, who presented their collection in suitcase-type displays. A maxi sole had layers of cork, leather and natural leather in fluorescent colors. Military boots featured transparent details and were adorned with bows, while gladiator sandals were reinterpreted with more femininity.
While the brand offered plenty of the opulent styles it is known for, creative director Edoardo Caovilla continues to diversify the collection. “If you remain where you are, you don’t go anywhere,” he said. From the archives, Caovilla brought back the Treccia sandal with silver and gold braided embellishments. A daytime pump — an updated version of a fall ’19 look — features an ultraflexible sole and is targeted to a woman on the go. The Cleo sandal, a favorite in Hollywood, was updated with texturized studs that featured small Swarovski crystals in the middle.
Offering her biggest shoe collection to date, the designer unveiled a range of heel heights in unexpected color and material combinations. “Shoes are a big part of the business now,” said Cademartori. Leopard wedges combined suede, patent leather and bamboo, while multicolor flats were embellished with python-printed leather and feathers. For evening, sandals were adorned with crystal detailing that wraps around the feet. PVC sneakers with detachable bows are already available on the designer’s website, and they’re getting a strong reaction. Cademartori debuted a new bag, the Daria, which can be worn as a crossbody and a top handle and comes in many variations.
Designer Nicolò Beretta was inspired by Milanese interior designers and added hardware touches like a square metal toe cap on the sole of a satin sandal as well as an oversized crystal resembling a citrine gemstone. Simple flat sandals popped in bright hues, and patent mules featured an oversized metallic buttonlike closure.
Inspired by English garden floral patterns, classics from the heritage brand got a stylish spring makeover. Small leather flowers in matching shades were applied to the uppers of the brand’s Pembrey and Shannon styles. The looks are offered in four different colors, from classic black and sandalwood to spring-appropriate white and cherry.
As the brand continues to plot its comeback in the U.S. market and beyond, it highlighted wovens this season. Across the bag and shoe collections, wicker was mixed with suede, metallic leather and unexpected color combinations.
The brand has a new floral print that was used on both kitten-heel booties and sky-high pumps. It also revamped its “Punk” collection and showed new graffiti pumps. A new architectural heel treatment was used on statement mules.
A flea market-styled presentation featured a monochromatic peach set inspired by the California sunset — with spring ’19 product splashed throughout. Mule sandals in patent leather are decked out with the brand’s stripe detailing, while gold laser-cut mirrored slides are updates of 1939 archival style. On the sneaker front, the Swiss heritage brand is launching two new styles for spring. First, it’s bringing back the Bally Champion style, worn by tennis star Jakob Hlasek in 1990. Meanwhile, the Vulko kicks, which come in both high- and low-tops, are stamped with the longitude and latitude coordinates of Schônenwerd, Switzerland, the brand’s home base.
For spring ’19, Birman diversified his collection with a much larger assortment of flats, easy-to-wear slides and new takes on knot detailing. He also offered up a large selection of neon sandals — capitalizing on one of the season’s biggest trends.