Giuseppe Zanotti showed Chelsea boots with Plexi heels and wedge sneakers for the men’s fall ’20 season. The heels, done in both clear and fuchsia iterations, were paired with classic English Chelsea boot uppers. Meanwhile, the sneakers, dubbed the Talon since they bear a motif like an eagle’s claw, have a hidden interior wedge. The designer said they were inspired by the late musician David Bowie: “He has been my idol for a long, long time, and I love a wedge heel, so I put a wedge inside so everyone can touch Mars. This is my formula.” High-top versions of the shoe are available today as a special see-now, buy-now preview in Zanotti’s Milan flagship store. The full line up will drop Feb. 10. “Splitting men’s and women’s doesn’t make sense any more,” he said of the genderless movement, noting that most of his label’s styles have been created for both sexes. In fact, he credited the sneaker universe for helping advance genderless footwear. “Sneakers helped us to discover a new planet,” he said. “Now we can do formal in a new way too.”
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Jimmy Choo’s fall ’20 collection celebrated cultural exchange between the East and the West, letting martial arts legend Bruce Lee serve as a muse. The hero shoe was a kung fu-inspired slipper done in a custom toile de jouy jacquard, aptly dubbed Toile de Choo. It fused the traditional French story telling fabric with motifs from Chinese art. “It’s the quintessential Chinese shoe,” said creative director Sandra Choi. “I was recently in Beijing and saw how young people wear them and they looked so cool. It was refreshing.” Elsewhere, the line featured Western boots with Cuban heels. Choi certainly has form here. As well as making the heeled boots Billy Porter wore to the Footwear News Achievement Awards last month, she also did the custom white crystal boots he wore at last week’s Golden Globes. Also with the red carpet in mind were ornate bejeweled slippers and brogues with tiny red crystals etched around the soles. Red is a lucky color in Chinese tradition and Jan. 25 heralds Chinese New Year, the year of the rat — which, ironically, is also Choi’s birth year. This collection marked an auspicious start.
The Prada-owned British brand has added a new range to its footwear lineup for fall. In keeping with the ‘dad shoe’ trend comes the square-toe Elborough, as both a lace-up shoe and a boot; the styles feature sturdy grained calf leather in burnt brown and burgundy colorways. However, while it may feel contemporary, it takes its cues from the brand’s archives and similar styles produced in the 1980s. The new models feature the brand’s signature Goodyear welt construction. Also new for fall is a rugged mountaineering-style boot showed with jaunty red laces. The collection premiered at a cocktail party in a Milan bar, which was turned into a swanky gentlemen’s club for the evening with Negroni cocktails, a saxophonist and a shoe shine station.
Fall ’20 was a tale of two halves showcasing two major trends: Super Pop and Ultra White. The former will surely brighten up the dullest of winter days with its saturated neon accents and printed inserts, while the latter will appeal to sneaker purists. One seasonal standout: the Royale runner. The collection will be sold at the brand’s flagship stores in Europe and Asia, at multi-branded retailers internationally and through its e-commerce channel. The label was acquired in 2016 by private equity group 21 Invest, which is run by Alessandro Benetton of the famous Italian clothing family.