Exhibitors at the FFANY Shoe Expo this week in New York City were wild about jute. Espadrilles delivered an instant punch of summer to collections that were primarily based on casual, transitional styles and comfort.
Antelope added hints of shimmer by mixing jute with metallic threads on block heel sandals. Restricted brought a summery feeling to deconstructed sneakers with jute outsoles. Dr. Scholl’s combined espadrille bottoms with skate sneaker styles. The brand added an artisanal touch to the natural sole shoes with contrast decorative stitching and supple leather uppers. The espadrille styles merchandised well with wedge sandals with bold braided straps.
Now that block heels have saturated the women’s fashion footwear category for several seasons, brands are banking on wedge heels to help lift sales and renew their sandal assortments. Brands captured the effervescent summer silhouette on espadrilles, unit bottoms, sporty white soles and cork footbeds.
Debbi Kravetz of Bayton Sandals said interest in the brand’s 100 percent cork soft footbed wedge sandals is ramping up, thanks in part to the brand’s catalog of playful upper materials. For Spring ’19, the brand keyed into feminine pops of color and embellishment like glitter, pearly pastels and mirror-like gold and rose gold. Other strappy styles are accented with more trend-forward Western-inspired buckles and white EVA bottoms.
Likewise, Minnetonka carried forward its popular York shoe, a cork wedge sandal with a sporty white outsole. Along with on-trend frayed denim, the brand updated the slide with Southwest prints in bright and muted desert tones. The frayed trim is a way for the brand to carry on its history with fringe during a season where fringe has tapered out of fashion.
Minnetonka is also expanding its range of everyday classics with a new suede moccasin program and a larger range of ballet flats. The cushioned flats are available in fresh neutrals and prints.
With so much attention paid to casual and athleisure, Patricia Green is making an effort to bring back the dress sandals for Spring ’19. The brand’s collection is split between espadrilles and low block heel slides and sandals in colorful materials and suede. The shoes are punctuated with wavy double straps that evoke both a mod and Palm Spring feeling, depending on the colorway.
Additionally, the brand is elevating the concept of the house slipper—a large portion of its year-round business—with sleek black smoking slippers adorned with regal embroidery.
As more consumers chose to stay home and entertain, the appeal of sophisticated house footwear that women can feel good about is bound to increase. Vionic has met that demand with pastel suede moccasins with outdoor-friendly footbeds.
Pastels are at the core of Vionic’s Spring ’19 line. The comfort lifestyle brand offers a range of slides and closed-toe slingbacks with a block heel in soft pink and lavender. Generous ruffles and ladylike square toes add a softness to the styles.
Vionic juxtaposes the pastel line with man-tailored loafer slides in metallics. Bronze pops as a fun alternative to classic brown. Meanwhile, patent pumps and loafer mules on a chunky heel deliver a retro office look.