Designer Footwear for Fall

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Fall shoes are a combination of heavy-duty shoes for the changing weather and sleek, elegant styles for the office and nights out. Everyone needs a basic wardrobe of shoes to meet these different occasions. Among the different styles you need are boots, the basic black pump, sandals, flats and sneakers. But who wants to limit herself to only five pairs of shoes? Not me.

Every woman needs both heavy-duty boots for the snow and ice and the sleek fashion styles to go with a pair of jeans or a dress for a sophisticated look. Patchwork was a major trend in different shoes and especially boots at the 2015 fall fashion shows. Etro showed a beautiful pair of knee-high patchwork boots in different tones of honey-colored snakeskin while Emilio Pucci fashioned a pair of short boots in different colors (white, blue and burgundy snakeskin) trimmed with a wraparound cord of burgundy leather. Burberry took a different approach to patchwork. Their knee-high boots were freestyle patches of suede leather in different colors (beige and red patches) on a background of neutral dull blue suede.
Dress boots worn with a sleek outfit were highly popular. Calvin Klein, Marc Jacobs, Altuzarra and Tom Ford all showed beautiful knee-high dress boots in dark, fashion-neutral colors. Some of the boots had the trending stacked heel while others kept the stiletto heel. Versace fashioned a beautiful thigh-high boot in lime green with a transparent acrylic heel. Emilio Pucci covered a midnight blue suede boot with gold-embroidered astrological signs and a stacked gold heel. However, Christian Dior stunned with an over-the-knee, sleek red leather boot that took no prisoners. It simply slayed the competition.

Another trend was the incomparable riding boot for day. Flat-heeled equestrian boots look sleek. You can wear your pants or jeans inside of them for a well-put-together look. Contrasting the heavy boot with a long flowing skirt is a clever way to look chic.

Pumps and Sandals
The stacked heel is in again for dress pumps and sandals. Jil Sander created a lovely black suede three-inch sandal with a contrasting toe of black patent leather. The heel is stacked wood tones and the counter a warm honey. One of my favorite sandals was by Salvatore Ferragamo crafted of different skins (for example, crocodile, ostrich and snakeskin) in complementary shades of brown.

Many designers, including Ferragamo, Gucci and Fendi, used fur to cover the foot or line their shoes for fall. The look’s questionable to me; some of the designs looked like you were wearing your cat. I can see you stepping on the fur from one shoe and pitching head forward. A neater look was presented by Dolce & Gabbana. Their red-heeled pump was trimmed stylishly in red fur. Even so, this is a trend you can skip.

Color Contrast
Designers used color contrasts to highlight their newest shoes, boots in particular. The basic boot is in one color and another color is used for contrast. Designers kept the contrasts to neutrals. Fendi used black and burgundy while Tom Ford chose black and beige. Jil Sander used dusty blue with burgundy and honey and a chic black-and-white combination that stood out. Sander also used a contrasting counter on many of her shoes.

This year the designers used metals for the shoe. Salvatore Ferragamo combined gold metal with black leather in a sandal with an ankle strap and a stiletto heel on a one-inch platform base. He also combined gold and silver metals in an ankle-strapped sandal with a novel heel. The open toe box is of black leather. Both are unusual yet attractive designs. Prada combined gold metal and dove in the upper shoe with a dove-colored stacked heel.

Men’s Wear
Designers favored black patent leather and plain black leather to create a wide variety of clunky, menswear shoes for fall. Some of these oxfords and lace-ups have thicker soles than others. There is a wide range of grommets, ties, tassels, kiltie tassels, wing tips and top stitching.

Mary Janes
Marc Jacobs presented a charming pair of black leather sandals with ankle straps and an extra-large stacked heel. Donna Karan combined grey suede and smooth leather with a wide ankle strap and curved heel for one of the better-looking Mary Janes. Prada used gold straps across the instep on an icy blue Mary Jane for a classy look.

To get the most out of your shoe wardrobe, go for the classic styles and leave the unusual trends (fur, for example) to others. Leather shoes for fall are expensive. The upside is that with good care, they will last for several seasons. When you simply can’t resist the fashion statement shoe, try a classic black, navy or grey. These colors never go out of style and can be worn with most of your classic and trendy outfits. HLM

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