The hottest shoes for fall all have one thing in common and that's Italy. The perfect pair of heels are both glamorous and hallmarked by fine artisan work. And while the Cinderella moment doesn’t happen just anywhere, in the land of the masters, it's a bona fide guarantee. In search of the ultimate kicks for the season, we headed to the top Made in Italy names for their highlights.
Founded in 1950s San Mauro Pascoli – a mecca for Italian footwear – Sergio Rossi’s excellent craftsmanship garnered him a refined global clientele from the very start. Current Creative Director Francesco Russo’s ‘Skin to Skin’ project experiments with the idea of accessories as armour. This season, Russo blends prehistoric with contemporary minimalism. The headliner of this new ‘barbaric’ line is a nappa leather bootie held together along the leg with iron hooks.
For every new footwear collection, a special line of ‘Ferragamo’s Creations’ is released. The pieces in this range are updated re-editions of Salvatore Ferragamo’s most iconic models. Once cobbler to the stars, the designer’s commissions for Marilyn Monroe are among his most famous. To commemorate the 50th anniversary of the actress’s tragic death, the maison is reissuing a red Swarovski crystal-embellished pump, akin to the one he designed for her. If you are staying in, or passing through Florence, make a point to stop by the Salvatore Ferragamo Museum, which is hosting a ‘Marilyn’ exhibit until 28 January. Over 30 of her legendary size 6 ½ heels are on display alongside artwork and photography.
Casadei has captured the hearts (and toes) of Hollywood’s leading ladies from Jessica Alba to Kristen Stewart. This season, the brand unveils ‘Supergator,’ a crocodile-embossed leather. “Supergator is the result of months of tests: the leather is lasered, washed, painted and tinted in an intensive process that requires engineering, lasers and high craftsmanship,” Artistic Director Cesare Casadei tells us. “I’ve implemented this new material into the new fall/winter ‘Betty Page’ pump and ‘Gaga’ wedge styles.’”
ORIGINAL ITALIAN QUOTE FOR ANNALISA: “Dopo mesi di prove ho ottenuto ‘Supergator’: la pelle viene laserizzata, lavata, dipinta e infine tinta in un processo che impiega ingegneria, laser e alta artigianalità manifatturiera. Ho declinato il materiale nelle diverse strutture nuove della stagione Autunno/Inverno, dalla décolleté ‘Betty Page’ alla zeppa ‘Gaga.’
The epitome of fine Venetian flair, you’ll recognize the mark of a René Caovilla shoe for its twirling serpent symbol that emerges from a classic pointy-heel. Entirely handmade at their factory in the region of Veneto, seasoned craftsmen and embroiderers work on each pair one by one. More detailed styles such as this season’s ‘Pioggia di Cristalli’ – crystal rain – stud and crystal-encrusted cashmere boot requires a complicated process where just one boot can take up to nine hours to complete.
GIUSEPPE ZANOTTI DESIGN
Another red carpet regular, Giuseppe Zanotti Design’s new collection is energetic as ever with stunning decorative details and plenty of attitude. “I infused models with a punk/rock´n´roll twist, creating low ankle boots with zipped turned down cuffs in the style of a biker jacket and sparkling rhinestone studded cowboy-style boots,” explains Zanotti. His aforementioned cowboy-style boots have 6,000 tiny crystals on them, which are meticulously applied one by one, all by hand.
The ‘Albert’ black suede boot with a vertiginous heel. A masculine-meets feminine style that pays homage to the film ‘Albert Nobbs.’
ALBERTO MORETTI ARFANGO
‘Decollete Diamond’ pumps crafted in plush black velvet and covered in Swarovski crystal, check under each of the soles for a provocative little message…
‘Minimal Baroque’ metal toecaps with punched honeycomb pattern holes. This new accent can be found on various styles from the classic court shoe to the pointed heel in fine black pony.
‘Lipstick Heel,’ a unique and unconventional conversation-starter that features a lipstick capsule for a heel. This season, it comes proposed in pump and ankle boot variations. Personality required.
So ladies, now that we’ve done the homework, it’s time for you to find out if the shoe fits!
See all our favourite fall accessories HERE