Another New York Fashion Week is in the books, and while the season was especially optimistic, the overall footwear offerings were still far and few compared to Europe.
Usually, the loudest options come from the larger brands, who have the design and production capabilities to pull off statement shoes, and the business for it. But this season, the most inventive and thoughtful creations came from emerging and niche, independent brands.
Herewith, FN’s countdown of the top 10 shoes of New York Fashion Week’s spring ’20 season.
10. Brother Vellies for Batsheva
There’s a cultish obsession with Batsheva Hay’s frilly but modest dresses (part Laura Ashley, part Orthodox Tzniut), and for spring ’20 the designer tapped Aurora James of Brother Vellies for their second collaboration: James’ frilled mules, which matched many of the dresses.
9. Tory Burch
The designer was inspired by Diana Spencer, the woman who would become Princess Di. A pair of polka-dot embroidered kitten heel pumps with a higher toe vamp perfectly encapsulated the early ’80s look — and the classic print was one of her favorites.
8. Gabriela Hearst
Hearst has made a distinctive platform for a few seasons now, but her nautical-like, leather and rope sandal is a lighter take on her dramatic elevated shape.
7. Miron Crosby for Prabal Gurung
For his 10th anniversary show, Gurung tapped Texas boot brand Miron Crosby for a collaboration of city slicker cowgirl boots that played off of the designer’s theme of American identity. You can buy them now on both brands’ websites.
6. Oscar de la Renta
Last season, Fernando Garcia and Laura Kim introduced a series of high-heeled strappy sandals done as mismatched pairs. For the spring ’20 collection, the designers continued to use the style, done with an additional simple miniature chain and a pointed toe on the sole.
5. Ulla Johnson
The New York designer’s feminine dresses are sought after for their embroidery and embellishment, and Johnson has taken a similar artisan approach to her shoes, including these macramé lace-up sandals.
4. Pyer Moss
The standout show of spring ’20, Pyer Moss had a runway filled with creative director Kerby Jean-Raymond’s signature primary colors, including a yellow that he’s added to this pair of lug-soled Reeboks.
Everyone is obsessed with Area for its crystal embellishments, which the company has added to fringed shoes in previous seasons. So have other shoemakers, who have copied the design to death. One can only hope that this gold platform with a vamp in eyelet lace and an ankle strap will remain wholly Area’s own.
2. Teva for Jonathan Cohen
Teva is on its third season of taking over NYFW, working mostly with independent, emerging designers. It’s gained a lot of traction on and off the runway. While its Anna Sui partnership is quirky-cool, we hope this collaboration of Swarovski-covered sandals with Jonathan Cohen actually makes it to retail come 2020.
1. Rosie Assoulin
Last season Rosie Assoulin partnered with Sergio Rossi to make shoes, an effort that will debut later this fall for retail. The designer’s footwear is just as unique as her clothing, and this spring ’20 lime green pair with a trendy square toe, a kitten heel and a keyhole is a complete original.