Fratelli Rossetti is Transforming Footwear

 

When you think of shoes, the first thing that pops into your mind isn’t usually carpet. That is, unless you’ve seen Fratelli Rossetti‘s new striped loafers. The Italian footwear brand has teamed up with handmade rug creators CC-Tapis to debut a line of striped shoes that are equal parts classic and contemporary.

Founded just outside of Milan in 1953, Fratelli Rossetti has become one of the leading names in Italian footwear. With a focus on both craftmanship and comfortability, the brand creates stylish shoes for every season. CC-Tapis, a Milan-based brand, produces eco-friendly rugs that are handmade in Tibet and Nepal.

 

 

For their collaboration, Frattelli Rossetti and CC-Tapis created two pairs of multicolored shoes that exemplify both brands’ focus on fashion, function and sustainability. Using white, mauve, pink and black to create a signature striped effect on the soles, the “Stripes Under Your Feet” capsule is a bold, yet understated statement. And in line with both brands’ disdain for mass production, the shoes are limited edition.

So, be the best dressed of your friends and buy them while you can. We have already.

 

Photos courtesy of Fratelli Rossetti

 

Made for Play, Cole Haan Introduces ZeroGrand for the Gals

In a testament to the general populations growing adulation for athleticwear and its sporty offspring, Cole Haan’s ZeroGrand is now available for the ladies. The shoe — a hybrid oxford with sneaker-like soles — first debuted for men in last year, and we’ve been patiently awaiting the arrival of this fairer version since.

What’s a commuter shoe, anyway? With this, consider the need for a second walk-to-work pair banished.

The shoe, in multiple colorways and styles, is available now at Cole Haan stores and online.

This Is What It Takes to Build a Nicholas Kirkwood Shoe

It’s easy to get lost in an “omg shoes!” moment and forget the architectural skill that goes into creating objects worthy of such obsession. Nicholas Kirkwood’s new “Arcs of Orbit” video reminds us to pause and note the insane “architectural and graphic elements…movement through scale, proportion, curvilinear sculptural forms, and contemporary materials,” all of which influenced the creative narrative behind the ‘Arcs of Orbit’ Autumn Winter 2014 collection.

In a flurry of movement way less than a minute long, a shoe is born. Watch the video here:

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Cole Haan’s Lightest and Most Flexible Shoe EVER

Oh hi, these are cool. We’ve been all-in over the athletic-wear-as-appropriate-day-wear thing in the BlackBook office — we are enthusiasts — and every now and again with that comes a craving to step it up a notch. Well, from the mouths of babes, right…

Cole Haan’s new ZeroGrand is a super light brogue with an athletic soul sole, and it’s out now. Get ’em here.

 

 

Superga x Versus Versace Sneaker Mash Up

Airy dresses, loose tees, hole-y jeans… ahh, summer. What shoes to wear with the breeziest pieces from your closet? If you’re in NYC, not flip flops. That’s a major no. But we can think of nothing better than easy kicks to pair with an easy wardrobe, and Superga’s Versus Versace collab has us dancing in anticipation.

We love a good white sneaker, but for even the Yohji-est among us, summer calls for a little color.

The shoes are available June 29 online and in select Versace and Superga stores.

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Images courtesy of Versace

Step Into A Jeff Koons

The works of Sean O’Meallie, Jeff Koons, and some humping balloon animals — it all went into Ostwald Helgason’s spring collection (you remember this sweatshirt, non?)

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Just in time for a really beautiful spring day in NYC, Ostwald Helgason’s spring shoe and handbag collaboration with ALDO Rise hits stores. The themes of the collection carry right over to the accessories with textures reminiscent of blown up balloons.

Shop it online and in stores at ALDO Rise. Watch a video featuring OH’s designers, Ingvar and Susanne, below, then scroll through the entire collaboration collection.

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Product images courtesy of Oswald Helgason X ALDO Rise

Dip Your Feet In Giuseppe Gold

Since 1994 (I was a zygote then, and you?) Giuseppe Zanotti has been dressing women’s feet in ludicrously fabulous and wildly impractical shoes. To mark 20 years of success, the man behind the gilded footwear has created a set of capsule collections, each representing a distinct characteristic of the brand, from jewels to rock to disco and onward.

The Jewel collection (out in June) is as gilded as it gets. Think glamour, think excess! Rock ‘n’ Roll, Black Stilettos, and Disco to follow in September, November, and February 2015, respectively.

The capsules will be availables exclusively at Giuseppe Zanotti boutiques.

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Images courtesy of Giuseppe Zanotti

 

To Mule or Not to Mule?

2013 was a year of controversial shoes. 2013 saw the return of Birkenstocks, the persistence of flatforms and the why-won’t-you-go-away wedge sneaker. Ardent advocates, zealots and haters came out in numbers to share their thoughts on the hottest footwear of the season. However, no shoe regardless of how maligned created a comeback quite as big as the mule in spring 2014 collections.

Much like its mammal namesake, the mule is a hybrid of two different shoes, fusing the high heel of a pump with the open back of a slipper. Over the years the mule has been the favored heel of popes and pop stars alike. Once gracing the feet of ancient Egyptian queens and ladies of the French court, the mule is now synonymous with Hollywood starlets such as Marilyn Monroe. The mule of the ‘50s was dainty and oft feather-pompom adorned.

Despite their rich history the mule faced heavy adversity when they first started reappearing on runway collections back in 2012. Former Paris Vogue editor Carine Roitfeld condemned the shoes as a fashion blunder, really letting ‘er rip.

“I hate mules. I hate the noise when someone walks with mules. Clomp, clomp, clomp. I think it’s very not chic.”

Many on the mule opposition cite the impracticality of walking in a shoe without a secured heel. Also an overall distaste for the aesthetics.

However, after this spring’s runway collections there is no longer any denying that similar to its barnyard counterpart, the mule is stubborn, and despite vehement resistance, isn’t going anywhere soon. The shoe found its way onto Celine, Chloe, The Row, and Altuzarra runways.

This season’s mule is modernized with a higher vamp that offers improved stability, and even the dreaded clomp, clomp, clomp is eliminated. Technology!

The more covered versions are less girly and less dainty, the higher heel feels cooler, sleeker, and more modern. These spring stunners are fresh, young and truly chic. Best worn with just below the knee skirts and dresses or heck, even cropped pants, they look flirty, fun and carefree. They have the support of the young (Ashley Olsen) and the older (Anna Wintour). Mademoiselle C recently said that she loved them.

The “I Know You Didn’t Just Whistle At Me” Shoes

While on hold with the airline (hey, holiday travel!) I’ve made the most of my forced free time, setting the volume low enough that the offending hold music hardly registers (just enough to hear, “hello, ma’am?” in what most assuredly is not anyone’s real accent ever,) and find myself 42 minutes deep into the Instagram rabbit hole. This time, the rabbit hole led me to staring at the most terrifying and maybe also awesomest shoes ever.

Please, take a moment:

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Yes, those are real shoes. They’re a bespoke pair from Scarlet Fever Footwear, by Australian designer Kira Goodey. And they could be yours! (Just give it eight weeks.) Goodey comes to the bespoke shoe business by way of Alexander McQueen, (the house she worked at as a womenswear print designer until Lee McQueen’s very untimely, very sad death.)

These beasties make a very specific statement and they are also the perfect accompaniment to a keychain can of pepper spray.

I really just want to see them in action: girlfriend’s walking all confident down the street, anonymous construction worker catcalls as she walks forward, and then by the time she passes him, he sees the jaws of a demon snarling back and he falls off his ladder or something (but only if it’s a short ladder).

Alternatively, a truly painful way to give someone a good kick in the rear!

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But in all seriousness, as absolutely certain as I am that they wouldn’t make it past airport security (still on hold, etc.) they deserve a few moments of admiration.

And that top photo? Those shoes are also made by Kira Goodey. Super hot. Also pictured: Kira Goodey’s legs. (Also, super hot.) Sans-snout, they’re a bit more my speed. Now if I could ever manage book a flight somewhere warm enough…

Images: @scarletfeverfootwear on Instagram.