Milan Fashion Week is a wrap, with both the city and the Italian fashion industry seeing a huge resurgence after several years of intense challenges. Here are key highlights from all the spring 2023 shoe presentations.
Sandra Choi has a big message: Never underestimate strong women. Inspired by fantasy figures of Manga and anime fiction, the new season at Jimmy Choo is all about exaggerated proportions. “The height is higher, the length is bolder,” the creative director said. Choi takes the diamond — a brand emblem — into new territory this season with the launch of the “Diamond” chain family. Fashioned in matte gold hardware, the chain plays a starring role in shoes, jewelry, bags and other accessories — taking different forms depending on the look. Denim, used creatively on both daytime and nighttime looks, evokes Y2K nostalgia.
Rossi offers up his distinct take on summer festival footwear — centered around natural stone embellishments. Jades, opals, turquoise, amethysts and tiger adorn high gladiator sandals with a sharp stiletto heel. For those who might want to stay a little closer to the ground, the stones are also featured prominently on the block heels of Rossi’s metallic leather mules. Crystal chains serve as a bracelet for pointy-toe boots and booties in the part of the collection the designer refers to as his “Punkish” world. And in the “Party” portion of the collection, Iridescent leather bands in every color of the rainbow punch up gladiator sandals. Platforms, in bright hues and alluring color combinations, are key throughout the collection.
The veteran designer, who spends a lot of time in his archives, gives his classic looks an update with a new pointy toe. Statement platforms are sky high. Jewelry shoes are abundant, with crystal-studded ankle straps shining bright on traditional silhouettes.
As Aquazzura marks its 10th anniversary, the brand is in a sweet spot amid the red carpet renaissance and the return to big parties. For spring, Edgardo Osorio offers up two new heels: a gold-plated metal look that amps up sandals, pumps and booties, and the graphic Bamboo, which is lacquered or galvanized. Rhinestones, floral and crystal chains elevate classic styles, while patent, raffia, iridescent lizard and python prints are some of the big material stories.
For her second Sergio Rossi collection, Evangelie Smyrniotaki once again started with the brand’s rich archive. Inspired by the models of the Y2K era, the designer unveiled a new stiletto, along with glitzy mules, and cage and gladiator sandals.
The brand has always been focused on the future, from sustainability to digital innovation. And for spring ’23, Casadei is taking things to the next level with an NFT to celebrate the 10th anniversary of its well-known Blade heel. Call it Casadei 3.0. Each customer purchasing the NFT will be offered an avatar to play in metaverse platform Decentraland. They can also redeem a physical shoe (just 1,000 pairs are available) — a futuristic white pump that comes with an NFC tag embedded in the outsole. The Blade also continues to evolve IRL, with a blinged-out version with a transparent vinyl strap. An architectural heel in the collection is reminiscent of the curves of the famous chair by Danish designer Verner Panton.
Known for its glitzy and glamorous party shoes, the brand is riding high on consumer demand for over-the-top looks. (Production must double to meet expected orders for spring 2023.) Its Studio 540-inspired collection features a new hero style, the Diamond Sandal. Its artsy heel was inspired by the diamond-shaped crystals of Venetian chandeliers illuminating the Palazzo Ducale. The toe band and back straps are sprinkled with the brand’s signature crystals. The label also introduces an on-trend satin platform sandal with square toe.
On the heels of announcing Kim Kardashian as its new campaign star, Stuart Weitzman wants to make its fashion ambitions known. The brand returned to Milan with a collection that has new takes on its best-selling boots, high-impact platforms and sculptural heels. At the same time, it continues to focus on versatile styles that can be worn all day.
The brand’s iconic double buckle is the star of the season, turning into a gold or silver plate on calfskin loafers and an ornamental pattern on the sabot mule. The embellishment also shines on bright sandals in blue, green and yellow. The double-buckle sneaker conveys a more contemporary feel.
Long before the luxury sneaker craze took hold, Hogan was making high-end sneakers back in 1986. Decades later, the brand reinvents several of its most well-known designs for spring ’23. Tapping into fashion’s genderless movement, the brand bows the ‘H630’ basketball-inspired low and hi-top kicks. A honey-color sole defines the silhouette. The H bag also gets a update in new colors and materials.
The brand introduced a crossbody clutch called the Metropolis Remix, a bow-shape bag fashioned in calf leather, as part of its new partnership with “She is the Music,” a non-profit founded by Alicia Keys to increase the number of women working in the music industry.
Innovative fabrics, over-the-top embellishments and extreme shapes define the AGL spring ’23 collection. From studs to crystals to leather flowers, accents are key. Bright hues, from red to hot pink to gold give the styles an extra pop.
As Rodo continues makes a comeback in the US market, the brand is tapping into its archives for spring ’23. The mini bag, for example, is reinterpreted as a shoulder version for evening, with a jeweled chain. The details of the bag collection carry over into the shoes — with sandals and pumps embellished with gold, crystal and ruthenium. Leather platforms are trimmed with soft metallic tassels.
Already known for its comfort and breathability, Geox wants to capture more of the dress market. While it continues to have new sneakers in its collection, the brand is emphasizing its more elegant looks for spring ’23. Sandals, ballet flats, court shoes and loafers come in a variety of feminine colors. The outerwear offering includes colorful new trench coats and parkas.
Pollini’s archival models are revisited: the Cavaliere boot is decked out with fringes, and the cremino sole — a cornerstone of the Archive collection — is fashioned in a new sandal. For evening, prints and sequin embroideries embellish the iconic mules, new platforms and flat sandals.
As it prepares to mark 70 years in 2023, the brand is emphasizing its artisanal, local craftsmanship (every shoe is made near Milan) and new eco-friendly styles. As part of its new “GreenSide” project, Fratelli Rossetti pushes sustainable design in its best-known look, the Brera loafer, which features a suede upper made from recycled materials.
The higher, the better. That seems to be the mantra at Le Silla, which showed big platforms, in patent and eco-friendly satin, as well as evening sandals embellished with flowers.