Posts Tagged ‘shoes’

I found myself in Statesville, NC this morning to deal with the repercussions of my lead foot. I managed to keep my issues with authority in check long enough to get the penalty reduced a smidge. I was riding such a triumphant high (The last time I was in traffic court, the bailiff said I needed to calm down and lower my voice. Good times), I figured I should do some shopping to celebrate.

A friend had repeatedly told me of fab deals and cute shoes at the Rack Room Shoes Outlet in Newtowne Plaza off I-77, but I hadn’t checked it out until today. Dios mio, I have been missing out.

Nike, Sperry, New Balance, Vans, Chuck Taylor All-Stars and Steve Madden are just a few of the brand names available for crazy cheap prices. I scored an adorable pair of Keds mary jane sneakers for $10 (retail for $35) for my daughter.

It’s certainly not a posh store — it looks every bit of an outlet and then some — but really, when you’ve got racks of super-sale $3 womens sparkly ruby slipper flats at the front door, who can complain?

Ladies shoes start at $5, and all mens, womens and childrens athletic shoes are 50 percent off the lowest marked price (the New Balance and Chucks I was scoping for my daughter were in the $10-$15 range).

It’s a great place to put your “quality versus quantity” spending resolution to good use (What? That’s not your resolution? Hm … maybe it’s just me.). It’s also a great place to stock up on name-brand kicks at a fraction of the regular retail price.


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Q&A: Steve Madden

Steve Madden of footwear fame was in Charlotte recently.
This should come as no surprise, but I have adored his shoes since the mid 1990s, when I was a recent college grad and obsessed with a pair of Spice Girls-esque fat-heeled, platform, ruby-red patent loafers. (Cut me some fashion slack — that was the look then!)

I still have my suede, wooden-heeled platform Maddens I wore on my first trip to Italy ages ago, and I love them just as much as I do the rad slouchy, buckled-laden biker boots I picked up at the Madden store in Charleston a few seasons ago.

He took the time to answer a few questions:

Q. How does the Steve Madden brand manage to appeal to such a range of fashion tastes? I always have my design team shop the streets in high fashion cities to keep their finger on the pulse of current trends.

Q. What’s your favorite boot for this fall? Short western boots! They work with boyfriend jeans, shorts, and skinny jeans, so it’s the right item no matter type of climate you live in.

Q. Has the days of extreme heels passed? Is it all about flats for Spring (Marc Jacobs showed an entire collection at NYFW with flats)? Our customers, ages 17-40, will always want heels. It gives you a bigger presence, and shows your unique style. But today flat or high shoes can be worn.

Q. The ’80s are back in a big way for fall and even into Spring. How do you see that playing out in footwear? Western was a huge trend in the ’80s, as it is now. Also, the neon colors of the ’80s are resurfacing.

Q. I am loving studded everything this fall, especially shoes. What advice would you give to someone considering a shoe with hardware embellishments? Go out and buy them!

Q. Why do you think studs/metallic detailing is so popular right now? Studs and metallic detailing are big right now because there’s an ’80s-inspired, neo-punk revolution happening.

Q. What is your prediction for the next “new” shoe silhouette? How about heel style? What is your must have shoe for fall? For spring 2010? Menswear is coming on board because it looks great with boyfriend (or ex-boyfriend) jeans. I love Oxfords and lace-up booties.

Q. What is on the horizon for the Steve Madden brand? We’re moving into clothing, and going gung-ho on all our accessories; handbags, belts, and wallets.

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The chiffon/tulle ombre grown prompted applause during it's first trip down the runway (AP Photo)

The chiffon/tulle ombre grown prompted applause during it's first trip down the runway (AP Photo)

Project Runway winner Christian Siriano certainly knows his audience.

And, now, with his third showing in the tents at Bryant Park, his Spring collection reflects a maturity that has come with that knowledge.

Inspired by the Mediterranean, he paired cool, luxurious blues, greens and golds were accented by blushes, khakis and even some volcanic colors. An aerial photo of the Italian coastline was manipulated to make create the core fabric (which resembeled electrified marble), according to his show notes.

It played out in a duality on the runway: for every muted, gently pleated piece that his ladies who lunch would adore, there was an overworked number that was a little too, well, fierce.

His motocross jacket in a satin oceanic print, paired with a pleated silk skirt has a soft, polished edge.

But a ball gown with excessive pickup pleating was more Scarlett O’Hara than night-at-the-opera chic.

I can’t hate too much, because clearly the man loves a dramatic shoe, as illustrated by his “bullhorn” heeled collection for Payless. The comma-shaped heel and platform cut an impressive silhouette, but just don’t expect to walk too far. During the final walk, one model had to ditch her kicks and finish barefoot.

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A little (more) about me.

n777594049_900365_2793“Experience has made me rich…cause everybody’s living in a material world, and I am a material girl.”

I love shoes. A lot.

I also love handbags. And beauty products. And clothing, of course. Accessories too.

So it’s fitting that all-things-fashion-and-style is what I do for a living. You can click here and here and here or here to find out more about my professional work, but here are a few things those Tweets and links may not tell you:

  1. I need a three-inch heel to feel good in a shoe. At least. Four is better, but five is pushing it (unless there’s a hidden platform involved).
  2. I spent an incredible amount of time in middle and high school trying to model my wardrobe around the following movie characters: Samantha Baker (16 Candles), Sloan and Jeanie (Ferris Bueller’s Day Off), Andi (Pretty in Pink), Baby (Dirty Dancing) and Cindy Mancini (Can’t Buy Me Love).
  3. I think bolo ties rock, but haven’t worn one since the early ’80s. Sad, I know.
  4. I get bizarrely defensive when people bust on Madonna. (Like she’s my BFF or something). She rocks for a variety of reasons. I won’t go into them all here, but ..
  5. My love of shoes is almost matched by my love of a killer deal on designer goods.
  6. I think fashion should and can be accessible at every age, body shape and price point.

I’m looking foward to covering New York Fashion Week in September. I’ve got a few ideas of what I’d like to write about, but I want to hear from you. Tell me what you want to read about, and I’ll make it happen.

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