“High heels are out,” Christian Cowan told FN backstage before his fall/winter 2024 runway presentation at The Harmonie Club in NYC on Sunday night.
“I don’t want to be someone that always promotes the concept that ‘you have to wear high heels’ and be uncomfortable all night,” Cowan said. “I want people to be able to do somersaults in our outfits – and they do sometimes. So, yeah, I’m all about a kitten heel or a flat this season.”
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Indeed, high heels were out for Cowan this season. The designer opted to show a slingback kitten heel with most of his looks in black patent or silver metallic colorways. The party-ready style complemented the collection’s theme of celebrating the five-point star in unexpected textiles.
Along with Cowan’s kitten heels at this season’s show, the designer revealed his new shoe collaboration with Toms on Sunday. The three-piece capsule collection includes updated takes on the footwear brand’s classic Alpargata slip-on shoe. Available in a black and a white colorway, Tom’s signature shoe is updated with an oversized blossoming peony flower on the toe of the slip-on and features a frayed edge that runs along the foot.
The third shoe is covered in fluffy Mongolian lamb for a lounge, slipper-like feel. While this style will not be for sale to consumers, the remaining two models will be available on Toms.com and ChristianCowan.com later this spring.
“The flamboyance of the blossoming peony juxtaposed with raw and durable fabrics is so fresh,” Cowan said. “I love how these designs merge the magic of our runways with the ease of wearable and comfortable design. These are those shoes that you get and wear every single day and forget about all your other shoes.”
Heather Altomare, vice president of product at Toms added that she is “thrilled” to partner with Cowan and bring his creativity and glamour to the brand’s Alpargata. “Cowan’s design brings a modern and fresh twist to our classic slip on, utilizing Toms’ signature canvas fabric to bring to life the intricate peony floral design,” Altomare said. The collection seamlessly blends our brand’s heritage with Cowan’s avant-garde aesthetic.
“This collaboration is a celebration of fashion, comfort, and our mutual commitment to social impact,” Altomare continued. “Through our partnership with Christian Cowan, we are proud to unite in championing these values and delivering a unique blend of style and purpose to our customers.”
Asked why he consistently teams up with brands on shoe capsule collections, Cowan added that he “loves” doing collaborations and explained what they can mean for his customer.
“Collaborations always push me into a new place that I get to learn something from and also allow our creativity from our house to reach more people who can’t necessarily get to a fancy shop and buy a $5,000 dress,” he said. “So it’s nice to be able to get more of our pieces to people. And Tom’s was so much fun because I’ve been wearing them for years. My mom’s been wearing them, my whole family have been wearing them.”
“Toms was so open to real creative collaboration,” Cowan added. “They never, at one point told me what to do or what I couldn’t do. They were really like, ‘just have fun with it.’ So, I did.”
Launch Gallery: Christian Cowan Fall/Winter 2024 Collection, Photos
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