Summer 2012 promises to be full of fashion and fun for shoe aficionados, as shoe styles will range from the funky — think Lady Gaga — to the downright retro glamorous, with pointed toes and metal tips for pretty small shoes. This coming season’s footwear is more fabulous than ever, thanks to the creative ideas presented by the world’s leading fashion houses at their spring/ summer 2012 shows.
- They’re back — and we’re talking about platforms. Have they ever gone away? Not in the last three seasons they haven’t — and thanks to Lady Gaga they’re here to stay. This season’s platforms are chunkier and higher than ever, and come in a variety of materials, from traditional summertime sandal cork to super-glam glitter acrylic. Best of all, we’re talking about some real height here; the trendiest designer platforms are reaching heights of six inches. Sure, you can’t walk very far in them, but who ever said that shoes are for walking all the time? Wear them for dinner dates — as long as you’re not going to walk or be the one driving to the restaurant — and you can show them off while you’re sitting at the table.
- Metal toes — For a long time, we were seeing metallic toes primarily on certain types of retro designs. But now, shiny metallic toes are being used on just about every shoe style possible, from patent leather stiletto heels to daytime pumps.
- Pointed toes — Get ready to crowd those toes together, because pointed toe fashions are in again. This style has been the backbone of retro glamour for decades, but now has a contemporary look all its own; you’ll see pointed toes rapidly replacing the rounded toes we’ve been seeing for the last several seasons.
- Braided sandal styles — Have they ever really been out? Even if they haven’t, they’re more in than ever before, this time with bright colours and twisty new takes on traditional braided leather.
- Lace-up styles — Keep a steady supply of shoe laces on hand, because you’ll be seeing lace-up fronts in the most improbable, unconventional ways, thanks to some creative thinking on the part of this year’s designers.
- Transparent see-through styles — Yes, they’re still in, even though you may have seen a few in the clearance bin at the end of last season. Even though the public seemed a little hesitant to accept them, designers love to create transparent vinyl shoes, and they’re giving them another try this season. Since we’re already seeing quite a few on the runways and in the red carpet zone, chances are that the see-through style will be more of a success with the shoe-buying public this year.
- Booties — Yes, it seems incongruous with summer fashion, but booties have been gradually catching on as a summer look over the last couple of seasons. Designers such as Christian Louboutin, Jean Paul Gaultier and Emanuel Ungaro like them, and they’re hoping they can get the buying public to like them too. In their spring/summer 2012 collections, Gaultier features a platform boot with lacing, while Ungaro is presenting open toe ankle boots in shades of turquoise, navy and orange.
- Colours — Funky colour combinations are in, and don’t be surprised to see multi-coloured shoes with orange heels, pink sides and purple toes. After all, anything goes in the summer.
- Embellishments — If you want to revamp your old shoes, get out the sequins and the glue gun, because judging by the runway shows, this season’s summer shoes will be artistically dripping with beads and sequins, as well as studs, buckles and — for the ultimate touch of glamour — Swarovski crystals.
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