The holidays are looming - time for festive footwear! It's the most wonderful time of the year. Parties galore. Always an opportunity to be a little out of the box and a little over the top. My faves for festive footwear revolve around color, texture and shine. This year my top picks are Velvet & Glitter. Velvet brings a touch of luxury to any outfit. This year Blue is the color of choice. I LOVE these Thakoon booties. Wear all season with jeans to party dresses or anything in between. The cowboy style with harness bow and buckle strike the right balance between feminine and tomboy. Badass & Beautiful. Looking for velvet value? Check out these two styles Rosemary and Neveah from ShoeDazzle.com. Both are value priced at $39.95, available in blue or cranberry. At this price you can get them both. Use a spray protector on any fabric, including Velvet to keep them looking smart. Don't forget to test a small unseen patch first to make sure the spray doesn't ruin the color. A good bet is 3M Scotchgard. My second pick for a festive season is Glitter. Can't find it? Make it! Not only do you get the style, fit, comfort and price you want, you get the color you want too! Check out these homemade beauties. Here's how to make them: http://www.abeautifulmess.com/2012/01/how-to-make-glitter-shoes-.html Ready to go really over the top? Mix both velvet AND glitter to make a major statement. These gold glitter and red velvet Michael Antonio booties are particularly perfect for Santa's Badass and Beautiful Elves. Whatever festive footwear you choose, prepare now and enjoy the holiday season.
The first day of Fall is upon us and in my neck of this woods this time of year provides a tiny window of opportunity for some of my shoes. Here are 4 must wears for right now! This is the best time for pumps and booties, open or closed. It's okay to add a tight or a sock. Make the most of your color palette and look to nature for cues-warm golds, oranges and browns; deep reds and greens; and light reflecting metallics, fall's finest. Wear 'em while you can. First up-the caged option. In flats, heels or booties, this gives you the structure of fall with the openness of summer. My personal fave for this year the Fluevog take. Note the talon-like toe detail. The open shoe helps the black look lighter. Closely related is the perforated option. Laser-cutting has made this design detail available at every price point. Look for it in a bootie as a nice transition from summer to fall. Metallics are still hot and they are a neutral. This is a versatile choice. Imagine a colored tight peeking through in a week or two. Hopefully it will stay dry for the next few weeks and that will give me the option of trotting out my calf-hairs and suedes. I've got a couple of options of each. Here are two that are perfect for right now. You can NEVER go wrong with a cowboy style boot, bootie or shoe. These calf-hair beauties in leopard work just as well with shorts or dresses as the do with jeans. I can dress them for work or play. The Oxford is especially on trend this year. In the best cases it is the perfect marriage of femininity and masculinity. In suede with a 3 inch kitten heel these by Splendid project just the right level of bad ass.
April showers bring May flowers and in my part of the world the weather can fluctuate from Summer hot to Winter cool with all weathers in between. I plan my outfits around my shoes and most often I start with boots or sandals, but this time of year is one of two brief moments (spring and fall) when I consider the "pump". For my purposes, I'll define the pump as a closed-toe, heeled shoe. This year one of the hottest trends for women is the Oxford, an integral part of any complete shoe wardrobe. Incredibly versatile, they work well with dress, work or casual wear. Last year I designed my own version of an Oxford using the online site, Shoes of Prey. I combined a deep charcoal grey and silver leather with a light blue and silver fishskin option to create these beauties. They are so me- all about texture and shine, a neutral with a kick. These are real conversation starters! Shoes of Prey offers an online option and they have recently launched a "Design Lab" program in select Nordstrom stores in the US and David Jones and Westfield in Australia. The online process is easy. You choose your style and off you go. You can choose from designs others have made, or go through a selection process to make your very own, personalized style. Options included styles, leathers and heel heights. Shoes are made to your size, half sizes included. They are guaranteed in your hot little hands within 5 weeks AND you can return or re-make until you are satisfied! This shoe cost me $199. Quite reasonable for a personalized design with a guaranteed fit. Oh and by the way, they are comfortable. Shoes of Prey is a mass customization model out of Sydney Australia. They launched in 2009 and with the recent partnership with Nordstrom, I see a bright future. I'm glad to see it working. The RoxAnneLava label is based on a similar model. I look forward to a similar success, albeit on a smaller scale.