Once upon a time, the only serious contenders in the men’s footwear industry were super smart, super traditional and, dare we say it, super samey.
But as men’s ready-to-wear has embraced the sportswear trend with open arms, footwear too has followed suit and taken on an altogether more casual vibe.
True luxury now lies in the fabrication, versatility, technology and subtle detailing applied to an everyday shoe, rendering it far from ordinary yet perfectly equipped for contemporary life.
For its fall ’18 presentation, Santoni celebrated the beauty of the everyday by using street-cast, non-traditional models of all ages. They sported badges proclaiming “Io sono bellissimo” (that’s “I am beautiful” in Italian) and showcased Santoni classics reinterpreted with more casual proportions.
Similarly, Brunello Cucinelli debuted runners — in premium leather fabrications, of course — plus hiking boots with luxe shearling linings.
As for Jimmy Choo, while Sandra Choi’s black pearl applications on dress shoes and slippers were divine, the brand’s fall ’18 hero was actually the Lucas, a regular chiseled-toe zip boot. Regular, that is, until you notice the metal toe plate on the undersole, etched with a deco rendering of the label’s logo.
Elsewhere, Giuseppe Zanotti flew the flag for versatility, showcasing a two-way biker/combat boot with zip-off upper done in butter soft leather. Other fresh styles included sneakers and slippers with removable socks, plus a rainbow high-top sneaker where each panel had its color applied by hand.
On the runway too, meticulously crafted sneakers and snow boots at Zegna Couture bore the label’s triple X symbol denoting their artisan fabrication, while laboratory inspired boots at Marni may have been mistaken for shiny plastic but were actually constructed from premium leather.
As for Fendi, Karl Lagerfeld delivered the Rolls Royce of sock-boots, and at Versace, the label’s sneaker collaboration with 2 Chainz was surely the ultimate in luxury streetwear.
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