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Let’s start off with Lucky Magazine’s Spring Shoe Guide (March 2011) as an intro. They list these shoes to add to your warmer weather wardrobe: wood platforms, jeweled slingbacks, bold loafers (as in bold colors), platform pumps, flat espadrilles, sliver-wedge sandals, pointy-toe slingbacks and cork wedges, followed by 2 strap sandals (on strap around the ankle and one over the toes) as their shoe-of-the-month in the April 2011 issue.

My thoughts: The wood platforms, cork wedges and flat espadrilles are pretty standard, every-spring-they’re-for-sale shoes (although I realize there’s a 70s vibe going around which is making shoe stores a little extra wood heavy). And I’m going to skeptically say I’ll stay on the lookout for someone wearing jeweled slingbacks as daywear in NYC. I also doubt you’ll see many people in bright loafers this spring/summer, especially with wide-leg trousers and maxi skirts trending now (can’t really wear loafers with those). But, I think the pointy-toe slingbacks, sliver-wedge sandals and 2 strap sandals are all spot-on. The sliver-wedge sandals are a nice progression of winter’s version popularized by Loeffler Randall’s sliver-boots. And I think pointy-toes will become more and more plentiful as the year progresses.

But I’ve also spotted a few other (more?) interesting spring shoe trends popping up and they actually all involve espadrilles!

First, I’ve noticed espadrilles with frayed straps. These are definitely more for your casual days but hey, if you already have a pair of strappy canvas wedges, don’t be afraid to dip into D.I.Y and rough them up a bit ;). And if you prefer the new versions, below Steve Madden, Coconuts and others have done the distressing for you.

Second, I’m seeing a lot of espadrille heels that continue up the ankle to form the heel cup; I’m calling them endless espadrilles. These shoes are AMAZING because when they’re on, at first glance you look like you might be wearing impossibly tall heels.  They’re also especially nice because the style could hide a much lower heel like the 2.5 inch (I know!) version by Sam Edelman. And as a side note – yep, that brand in row 5 is Hunter of rainboot fame, apparently making some leather heels now.

Honorable mention goes to espadrilles that do not have covered ankles but instead feature an extra tall side portion or “cut-out” ankle strap that creates a similar illusion. Surprisingly, I found a nice example of these shoes at Old Navy which are a great option if you’re on a budget.

I still have one more trend for you further below, but for now, some picture proof!

FRAYED EDGES

Coconuts Avery

Bettye Muller Saffron

Steve Madden Fraid

ENDLESS ESPADRILLE HEELS

Matisse Asher

BCBGMAXAZRIA Malaga

Sam Edelman Leroy

Enzo Angiolini Ramie

Enzo Angiolini Romario

Hunter Anegada

HONORABLE MENTION

Old Navy Espadrille Wedges

Corso Como Decoy

Boutique 9 Illy

Not Too Coy Lydia

And last I’ve collected some irregular espadrille combos. Brands like Tory Burch and 3.1 Phillip Lim are marrying espadrille soles with a chukka or desert boot upper. This is probably best with a canvas boot and an excellent option when we’ve got those New York days where it’s warm for just a few hours in the afternoon sunshine and then you’ve got to put your jacket back on (like today!).

A few other brands, like Jeffrey Campbell and Prada, decided to add in an espadrille layer to a shoe that normally wouldn’t have it. This might technically shorten the seasonally appropriate lifespan of the shoes, but fashion rules are made to be broken. However, I’m not sure we should even call them espadrilles, and at the same time, I don’t think we can leave that out – it’s pretty distinctive. How about Espamaybelles? (I’ll break that down: espa-maybe-lles…? ok, well, I love it, haha).

Anyway, that’s it for now. Happy shopping all! And if you spot any other crazy espadrille hybrids, let me know.

Tory Burch Desert Bootie Espadrille

3.1 Phillip Lim lace up espadrille

Prada Lace-Up Cutout Wedge

Jeffrey Campbell Mary ESP

Mark & James Magnolia

Chinese Laundry Dragonfly

For over a decade, Pantone (the self-professed world-renowned authority on color) chooses a single color that they predict will be influential in the coming year. In case you missed it last year, their pick was 15-5519 Turquoise, because, as the official press release declared, “Turquoise transports us to an exciting, tropical paradise while offering a sense of protection and healing in stressful times.” For 2011, Pantone selected 18-2120 Honeysuckle – a medium reddish pink, and  released this statement: “Energizing honeysuckle lifts spirits and imparts confidence to meet life’s ongoing challenges.” Pretty heavy stuff. But if that isn’t a great reason to go shopping for a new pair of shoes, I don’t know what is 😉

So, the official color is Honeysuckle, but I think any pink or coral colored shoe will be in the spirit of things. And designers are knocking out tons of pink shoes for resort and spring collections, so finding a pair right now is easy. If you’re looking for something to start you off early and keep you cozy as the winter slowly ends, I recommend the Koolaburra ugg boots in a soft pink below or an enclosed pink suede pump like the pair pictured by Kelsi Dagger (with the cutest removable elastic bow!).

Pantone says that you can easily pair Honeysuckle with basic colors like black, navy, charcoal or light to mid gray. But, for something more exciting, they suggest mixing in complementary bronze greens or a pinkish Apricot Brandy brown hues into your wardrobe with it. I vote pairing these with a maxi dress or with jeans and a drapey cream-colored blouse. Just remember these shoes are made to be the focal point of a basic outfit.

For the start of warm weather, Manolo Blahnik flip flop sandals are actually an almost-affordable way to enjoy the brand. You should also take a look at jumping on two trends at once by going for a platform style (or a “flatform” – an essentially flat shoe as far as feel goes, with equal or near equally tall platforms front and back) or an espadrille (always a summer favorite). And of course, since I have a special place in my heart for Melissa shoes, I was happy to see they’re also making a few pink shoes this season so that I could feature one here.

You know, maybe there is something to what Pantone said; I already feel my spirits lifting just by imagining walking out of the house with these shoes. I’m sure we can rationalize a pair of two now, especially if our mental health is at stake 😉

Jeffrey Campbell The Turino Shoe

Koolaburra Savanitty

Kelsi Dagger Tiffany

Manolo Blahnik Suede-Flower Thong Sandal

Dolce Vita Strappy Platform Wedge

Prada Cutout Espadrille Wedge

Stella McCartney Raffia Crossover Sandals

Lanvin Ankle-Wrap Platform Wedge

seychelles harlow

Vivienne Westwood for Melissa Anglomania

avatarI always wondered how some people make their season predictions. Sure I expect people from Vogue to be at the catwalks, but The Wall Street Journal? How about writers of the millions of blogs around today? They can’t all have been at the tents.  Anyway, enjoy everyone’s Spring 08 predictions below! (I’ll re-post this in the summer so we can see who got it right).  And, I’ll add more sources to the list as I read through them. Please feel free to add your finds to the list by commenting.

    The Wall Street Journal (Dec 27) said: keep dressy suits and polished looks, ballerina flats, bold colors and eco-friendly clothing. WSJ’s lose ’em items are:  giant handbags, trapeze dresses, puffy sleeves and flashy daytime pieces (sequins, metallics, etc).

    Marie Claire (Feb) is going for: natural fibers, patent, colorful exotic skins, gladiator flats, architectural heels, tribal detail and neon colors.

    Vogue (Feb) showed: mostly pictures of pointy or open-toe pumps with very sculptural heels and lots of toe decorations. Below are some of the same shoes from the magazine (but in different colors! Thanks style.com).  And they highlighted “technicolor exotics” for bags and shoes (all the shoes were open-toe sandals – special note to Manolo Blahnik’s bright yellow python gladiator boot heels).

style.com style.com1
style.com2 style.com3

Left to right (all styles featured in Voguebut these are different colors): Louis Vuitton, Prada, Prada (imagine without the checkered tights and it’ll seem much more wearable), Marc Jacobs (look closely at the heel, it’s a kitten heel and a wedge!).

     People, Style Watch edition (Feb 2008 – page 54) chose tall gladiator sandals (wedges or heels) and extreme fantasy style with fancy heels. Other clothing trends they mentioned (which could make their way to shoes too, sure) were: bright colors, 70s Ikat prints, ombre prints, large flower patterns and warm white to beige handbags. Going one step further, People also advised the fashion savvy to keep: yellow, sequins, snake skin and prints, ballet flats and platform heels. They did not tell of any shoes to lose for the spring transition.

     Elle (Feb 08 – page 95) started with sheer shoes in transparent tulle and mesh (especially those by Christian Louboutin, see below). They also talked about the increasing use of feathers, bright to pale petal pinks, lingerie or plain old pajama inspired designs (corset lacing, lace or satin heels, velvet slippers) and platform mary-janes for a bit of a Lolita edge.

christian louboutin Key Te April Nina Fashion

Left to right: Christian Louboutin pink chiffon peep-toes, Key Te brown mary-jane wedges, Nina bright pink satin heels.

      She She Me (Sassy Fashionista online newsletter sent 1/25) predicts platforms, earthy wedges, gladiator flats (we have a slight difference of option here with People magazine) and basic thong flats, but she does mention that height and color will also be key elements.

     Lucky (March 08 – page 189) listed wooden heels, t-strap heels, sophisticated woven wedges, satin platform heels, mary jane flats, peep-toe slingback heels, and bohemian-inspired metallic sandals (the strappier the better) in their Spring Shoe Guide.

C Label Lady Licorice BCBG Naola
Unisa Kohana Mia Greenwich

Left to Right: C Label‘s Lady Licorice champagne and gold sequin mary janes, BCBG Max Azria‘s Naola brown satin platform heels, Unisa‘s Kohana tan woven wedges, and Mia‘s Greenwich wooden heels.

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