There’s something you need to know aboutBalenciaga shoes: they’re live on Nordstrom.com and in select stores as of … now.
There’s something else you should know: This is an exciting time for footwear within the already very exciting brand. For years, under Nicolas Ghesquière, shoes were outsourced to Pierre Hardy. Now that Alexander Wang is at the helm, everything from heels to boots to sneakers happens in-house.
Here’s to Wang and company owning it, and, perhaps, you owning a pair or two, also.
We understand, you like things a certain way. Shoes of Prey knows that too, which is why we’ve announced an exclusive partnership that puts their online bespoke shoe studio into six of our brick and mortars.
The innovative New World design/retail model allows you to design shoe creations online with your very own brand of unparalleled and fastidious care. There are, after all, over 70-trillion possible combinations (yeah, girl—trillion). Combine that unique aesthetic freedom with a few iPads and hands-on, in-store customer service (and multiply it by special accommodations for hard-to-fit feet and more) and what’s not to love?
If you’re in the greater Seattle area, make an appointment at our Bellevue Square location to play with digital colors, fabrics and silhouettes galore—complemented by a touch of on-demand human advice—and you’ll receive the fruits of your labor in the mail within four weeks! Not planning on carousing about the PNW anytime soon? No worries, we’ll be announcing five more store locations early next year.
At last, your dream shoes are but a few guided keystrokes away.
A blogger is a blogger is a blogger, right? Well, no. Not when the blogger is 4th and Bleeker’s Alexandra Spencer. We chatted with the model, stylist, artist, photographer and yes, blogger, during our recent Stuart Weitzman campaign shootand got a window into her gorgeous world of creative cross-pollination. But it wasn’t all business. We talked boots, sandals, inspiration and outfits too.
The Thread: Tell us about 4th and Bleeker. Alexandra Spencer: It’s where I share all of the different projects that I work on. It’s a place for all of my collaborations in whatever form they’ve come—whether it’s photography or modeling or art direction or styling or painting, it’s a home for all of that.
Hear that? It’s the sound of stylists, editors and fashion-obsessed citizens all over the planet making a wish and blowing out the candles.
Fall marks a decade of the Pigalle pump and while you might say the shoe is designer Christian Louboutin‘s golden child—born in the autumn of 2004, named for his favorite Parisian neighborhood—it’s been raised by those who love and adore it. So shouldn’t we all celebrate?
Well, we’d hate to say we told you so, but Paul Andrew has been a winner in our eyes since his feminine, edgy collection for Spring ’14 hit our floors. Color us just plain extra happy then, that the footwear genius was awarded the CFDA’s highest honor this week in New York. On the occasion of this Very Big Deal, we spoke to the designer himself as well as the in-house tastemaker who knows his work best.
“As you can imagine, I’m on cloud nine right now,” Paul Andrew told us. “I’m so excited and so proud to receive this accolade. It is such an incredible honor and an overwhelming feeling of gratitude. This is literally a dream come true. The CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund program has put so many small designers on the map, it has not sunk in that I am now part of that class. To the shoe obsessives of the world, I say ‘stay tuned’! There is much more coming from Paul Andrew; I have ambitions to launch a men’s collection, e-commerce, and am looking to further elaborate on the core offering in my women’s collection, and while there is significant work to be done and much more focus and energy required I could not be more motivated.”
‘Aztec’ Fringe Suede Sandal
“Our attraction to Paul Andrew stems from his unique designs, which embody both a sexy refinement and focus on fit and comfort. He is genuinely engaged in making women look and feel good,” said John Langston from our designer shoe team. “We’re eager to see the momentum behind his creative direction, lending credibility to his new must-haves in seasons to come.”
A gorgeous shoe is a gorgeous shoe is a gorgeous shoe—except when the shoe is actually a metaphor for desire. In that case, the gorgeous shoe is actually a story. Consider, then, the new Jimmy Choo collection, Vices, a short story collection that’s long on style. Each of the limited-edition shoes and handbags is based on a specific gem or jewel and a specific vice or vague wickedness—think greed, lust, envy. To find out more about this accessories-based riff on the classic juxtaposition of good and evil, we spoke to creative director Sandra Choi about her inspiration, concepts and design process.
THE THREAD:The subject of vices is a rich one; we all have plenty–those we share and admit to, and those we don’t. Did you find you were revealing part of yourself in this collection as you explored ideas of envy and need? Choi: Yes and no, the inspiration for the Vices collection stemmed from my own personal fascination and obsessive enchantment with jewels and the unmitigated and irrational desire they have the power to evoke. For Vices, I explored themes of envy, seduction and irrepressible yearning for objects of beauty. Shoes and bags in diamond, ruby, sapphire, emerald, jet, black diamond and citrine crystal comprise the seven sins that seduce and beguile as part of the collection.
What is your first and most specific memory of being dazzled by jewels? It was at the Gem Palace in Jaipur. It is a breathtaking Aladdin’s cave of precious stones that is such a surprising contrast from the environment outside, which is a dusty and bustling city in Northern India. Inside the Gem Palace you have a remarkable amount of freedom to play and connect with the precious stones of every variety.
What is your first and most specific memory of the transformative power of a really great pair of shoes? For me it is childhood memories of Cinderella, Dorothy’s ruby slippers and Betty Boop’s heels; they are forever ingrained in me.
Let’s talk about black diamonds. They’re a bit under the radar and rather underappreciated, so it’s cool that you included a style based on this, the strongest and scrappiest of all natural diamonds. Tell us about your design process for Piper, the black diamond-themed shoe. For instance, the heel is slightly lower than the other styles, and the detailing is especially dynamic. What did you hope to achieve with the look, and what specific elements did you include or leave out in order to make it happen? I wanted a sultry yet seductively beautiful shoe. I based it on a tango-style shoe that ensured you glide when wearing it; it is a shoe that you can dance in all night.
SHOP:Jimmy Choo Images and video courtesy Jimmy Choo
It’s not every day you get a window on the path of a rising star. While British shoe designer Rupert Sanderson has been on the ascendancy since his 2001 launch (he was named the British Fashion Council’s Accessory Designer of the Year in 2008 and, in 2009, the year’s Accessory Designer at the Elle Style Awards), the past few seasons have been a star-studded, wicked-heel-wearing golden arrow. We caught the London-based stylemaker via phone on a recent Friday as he, his wife and their three boys motored off to the “wilds of the Suffolk Coast.” Sounds like the perfect place to tromp around in some Crescent riding boots if you ask us.
THE THREAD: Your collection includes both strappy, cut-out sandals with four-inch heels and borrowed-from-the-boys booties. Tell us about the modern mix, and the modern woman you design for. Sanderson: Because I have my own retail business bang in the middle of Mayfair on Bruton Place, I can think about these real women who come into my shop and design with them in mind. I can put myself in the mind of these women and see them dressing up in the evening and wearing something very light and almost frivolous, and then kicking about in biker boots at the week’s end. I can see a woman throughout her week wearing all of my shoes. I enjoy having a flight of fancy with the really glamorous styles, but I enjoy making shoes that women can wear again and again as well. I really enjoy the definitions between seasons. We’re in the middle of designing for fall/winter 2015, and I find myself still going for incredibly light sandals, but I love designing boots as well.