Interview With Julie Frederickson of


I’ve been enjoying getting to know my fellow shoe and fashion bloggers through these interviews.  If you’d like to be featured, email me at shoe_smitten(at)yahoo(dot)com. 

Today I’m thrilled to bring you an interview with Julie Fredrickson of Almost Heeled!  This brilliant glamour girl also founded the popular fashion blog Coutorture.

After interviewing Julie, I was surprised to find that she and I have much in common.  Julie says she is a “fashion geek”, and her blog was born out of an affinity for shoes – she wanted to share the shoes in her daily life.  I started Shoe Smitten for a similar reason – to learn more about shoes and to celebrate the shoes with which I’m smitten.  

Julie’s shoe wardrobe consists of versatile designer shoes, and although she only owns 15 pairs, they are “15 perfect pairs of shoes that can service any conceivable occasion from black tie to a live backyard concert.”

Keep on reading below the break to learn more about Julie and her blog, Almost Heeled.


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Interview With Da Vinci of

Today’s interview is with Da Vinci of Da Vinci’s Blog Log (or D.V.B.L)

Anna: When did you first become interested in fashion?

Da Vinci: I’ve honestly always had a sense of fashion. It was passed on from my mother, when we were growing up she loved buying the latest Italian or Parisian fashions and shoes. In fact it inspired my sister and I to do our own designs and catalogs when I was about 4 and she was 8.

Anna: Describe your fashion/shopping expertise?

Da Vinci: I wouldn’t call myself an expert or guru, I just REALLY appreciate the art of fashion. I think fashion gives us an opportunity to express ourselves in an openly artistic way. If you look at the history of fashion you can tell it’s affected by the mood, economy, etc of a time period. Which I think is true when I buy my clothes or shoes. I’m not particularly just about name brands I shop for looks, color, and how it makes me feel and then we talk pricing, lol.

Anna: You are so modest!  I couldn’t agree with you more about the power of fashion.  Do you remember your first pair of heels?

Da Vinci: My first pair of heels were a white wedge I bought for my 8th grade graduation…I skipped 2 grades so I was still rather young. Man I LOVED those shoes.

Anna: How many pairs of shoes do you own?

Da Vinci: My goodness I’ve never counted but I’d have to say at least 50 pairs

Anna: Favorite shoe designer? Why?

Da Vinci: Hmm, this is a toughie I love many designers… but just to name a few I would say Jimmy Choo, Christian Loubutin, BCBG, Giuseppe Zanotti, and Jessica Simpson makes a mean affordable heel, but I mean it’s like choosing a favorite child, it’s impossible and not right, lol.

Anna What shoe trends are you loving/hating this season?

Da Vinci: Aww man there are a few things I’m loving, Purple is a great color and I’m glad it’s in season. I love the peep toe boots that are out. For me I think in any season Patent shoes aren’t really my favorite, lol..but I have seen it work.

Anna: Favorite shoe store(s)?

Da Vinci: Bakers, Bebe, DSW, Wild Pair, Steve Madden, etc

Anna: Are you a heel, flat, or sneaker kind of girl?

I’m all three, depends on the occasion and mood of course…but there’s nothing more sexy than a pair of heels.

Anna: If you could design a new shoe, what would it look like? What would you call your collection?

Da Vinci: Hmm, I’d have to do a few of course, lol. But I’d design some platform stilettos in purple suede or leather with black trim and silver accents and I may do a peep toe boot myself, lol. As far as what I’d name my collection I’m sure I’ll have one coming in the future so you’ll all have to wait and see.

Anna: When did you start your blog, Da Vinci’s Blog Log, and why?

Da Vinci: We just celebrated out 1yr blogoversary and launched a new look. Da Vinci’s Blog Log was officially started December 12th, 2007. I started it as a culmination of things that interested me that I thought would interest other women. Because of this reason I point out to people that D.V.B.L is in fact a blogozine for women, and not just a blog. We cover such a vast variety of subject matter cooking, fashion, beauty, relationships, book reviews, tv show highlights and much much more!

Anna: What is your favorite pair of shoes that you own?

Da Vinci: I have a few, lol nothing is ever easy with me I know, but I love these 4.5 inch Jessica Simpson Stilettos and I also love these knee high boots I got from Bakers.

Anna: Besides blogging about fashion and shopping, what else do you enjoy?

Da Vinci: I love cooking, dancing, bowling, movies, reading, etc. I’m a modern day renaissance woman so I love most things, lol.

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Interview With Laura of

This is the second interview of what I hope will be a continuing series in which I introduce influential fashion bloggers and their takes on shoes. 

Today, we have Laura Coronado of Lollie Shopping.  Laura started the blog Lollie Shopping in October of 2007.  Lollie Shopping is a state of mind – a genuine appreciation for savvy fashion, style and shopping.  And I think you’ll agree with that statement after reading the interview below that Laura has an amazing sense of style when it comes to shoes!  (Just look at the fabulous pink boots she’s wearing!)

Anna: When did you become interested in fashion?

Laura: I think I became interested in fashion the moment I discovered pretty things. I played with dolls, not pretending to be a mommy, but because I enjoyed dressing them in various outfits. Of course I owned several Barbies, all of whom worked as models or actresses in my little imaginary fashion world.

Anna: How would you describe your fashion/shopping expertise?

Laura: Much of my knowledge and skills either came naturally or were self taught. I’m a voracious reader and I study fashion and retail articles much in the way business folks read the Wall Street Journal. In addition, I worked as a fashion copy and content writer for a well-known Internet retailer for a couple of years. I think that experience helped take me to the next level.

Anna: Do you remember your first pair of heels?

Laura: I do! To this day I still think of those shoes. I wish I still had them as a memento. I was in the second grade, and my mother surprised me with a pair of rope wedges with red fabric upper. I may have only been six years old, and the wedges were all of two inches high, but I felt like a complete woman.

Anna: Dare I ask, how many pairs of shoes do you own right now?

Laura: I hate when people ask me this. Sixty pairs give or take a couple.

Anna: Favorite shoe designer? Why?

Laura: Just one? I’ve met a few designers, too, so that makes it especially difficult. Once you know their personalities, you love them that much more. Honestly, for me, it depends on the occasion and mood. Some designers are perfect for when I’m feeling capricious – think John Fluevog or Marc Jacobs. Other designers know how to make a woman feel like a woman, like Stuart Weitzman, Donald J. Pliner and of course, Christian Louboutin. Then there are those who make art, such as Giuseppe Zanotti. So, I can’t name just one. Sorry. But, I will tell you I have the biggest crush on Mark Nason. He is way sexy.

Anna: What shoe trends are you loving/hating this season?

Laura: I love the color purple, lace-up oxfords and peep toes. For me, the perfect shoe this season is a purple, peep toe oxford. I hate anything higher than a five-inch heel. Anything higher than that is just mean.

Anna: And what are a few of your favorite shoe stores?

Laura: Aldo, Steve Madden,,, and

Anna: Are you a heel, flat, or sneaker kind of girl?

Laura: Heels. Definitely.

Anna: If you could design a new shoe, what would it look like? What would you call your collection?

Laura: First of all, it would have to be a black leather boot. I know that doesn’t sound original, but I have a thing for black leather boots. It would be knee high, with a four-inch heel and a platform with a silver metal plate on the front – just to toughen it up. It would have to be made in Italy and lined in hot pink with a hot pink sole. It zips up, and while the shaft would be smooth, there would be a quilted leather cuff at the top. My collection would be called “Picosa” which means spicy in Spanish.

Anna: What is your favorite pair of shoes that you own?

Laura: That’s like asking a mother to choose her favorite child. Right now I can’t seem to stop wearing my Anne Klein New York black leather ankle boots with a braiding detail. But I just bought them, so I think that’s why.

Anna: Besides blogging about fashion and shopping, what else do you enjoy?

Laura: I have a fabulous job as a marketing copywriter/editor, I live in glamorous Las Vegas and I have the best husband in the world (also a writer), so when I’m not blogging or shopping, I’m enjoying those three things. I also enjoy creative writing and abstract photography. In addition to all that, I am also enjoying working on my new upcoming website: It’s not live yet, but it will be very soon.

Anna: Thank you, Laura!  You truly live a shoe smitten-kind of life.  I can’t wait to see your new site.

Would you or a fashion blogger you know like to be interviewed on Shoe Smitten?  Send me an email.


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Q&A With Maggi Mercado of Asgi Shoes

I had the opportunity to ask Maggi Mercado, design director of Asgi shoes, a few questions about her own style, the Asgi brand and her fashion advice for you (men and women).  She has some great advice that I think all of you will benefit from, and she offers an exciting sneak peak into what’s next for Asgi shoes.  Check it out!

1. How would you describe your overall everyday ‘style’?

I travel a great deal, move around a lot, and therefore wear trousers, pants suits and narrow jeans a lot with the Carina Bootie and the Roma Bootie. The booties are great for travel because they are easy to take off and put on at airport security areas. I also collect accessories (large pieces of jewelry, unusual bags and belts) to update my look and try to travel with one or two color palettes to mix and match. This season I’m buying accessories (eyeglasses, bags, jewelry and scarves) in the metallic colors of the season which go with everything and this helps when I need to get ready fast.

I am short and my husband is very tall so I favor heels, booties and wedges. I like soft lower heel booties such as the Tahoe Bootie from Asgi’s Classic Collection. Sandals like the Tau or Clio Wedge were my recent summer favorites and took me through several trips to China, Europe and the U.S.

I am Latin and therefore not afraid to wear color and to mix and match colors. I find that the colors affect my mood. While working from the home office, I like to get up early and get dressed as if I were going to an outside office. This helps my creativity and our local Starbucks is filled with well-dressed professionals in the morning. Because I’m a designer, I sometimes end up with color markers and pen marks all over my tops so now I wear mostly black tops.

2. What would be your top three recommendations for men and women buying shoes right now? (shoe styles, colors, shopping advice, etc.)

For men I believe it’s important to have a clean loafer in black or chocolate brown, even in a beautiful burgundy which looks sensational with navy and gray suits. This is also a color that is easy to wear and to keep clean. A casual shoe in beautiful leathers and high tech materials, with laces can be very multi purpose and used for travel and casual office attire. Of course, a nice pair boots are a good investment and can be worn year round.

I always suggest people buy footwear that is adjustable or has removable foot beds, as feet swell during the day therefore the ability to customize your shoe is a good one.

For women, a bootie, ballerina and loafer are fashion-musts. Purchasing a shoe or bootie in purple, wine, gray suede or a metallic color also adds a bit more fashion. Perforations and metallics are very pretty as well. Asgi’s Dolce Pump and Marcy Mary Jane combine both of these trends. Additionally, a woman should always have a good quality pump in her wardrobe; it’s the little black dress of shoes.

3. What has been the biggest challenge with trying to combine technology and luxury?

Asgi was determined to design and create an entirely new type of technology that would dramatically impact the comfort of shoes without sacrificing style. This was a complex process that has resulted in our innovative patent-pending technology called Soleplex. There is a stabilizer and chassis system that delivers a unique walking experience. We believe that Asgi revolutionized the design process by creating an entirely new fashion look with unique pods on the soles that give the shoes a beautiful silhouette. We complemented the innovative look by using the finest materials including hand-selected, full-grain leathers.

4. I’ve noticed that most Asgi shoes are grey, black, brown or a metallic hue. Do you think you’ll branch out into bolder colors along with the bold designs?

Our fall line features this season’s popular metallic colors such as silver, pewter and bronze. Some of our shoes also incorporate purple, the season’s hottest shade.

Asgi’s spring 2009 collection will be all about textures and colors. We will integrate textures such as perforations, matte nappas, meteorite finishes and colorful patents creating a distinctive look. The shoes will feature some unique colors and combinations such as silver and white, shimmery and pearlized pastels with classic colors. Our chassis provide additional canvas for color and graphic designs.

5. What inspires you to design? Music? Art? Other shoe designers?

We collaborate with a state-of the-art design studio outside of Venice, Italy, Andre Maritan Studio. Also, I am always attending the trend, accessories, components, color and material shows such as Trend Selection and the Tanners Art show. Travel is always inspirational but after all footwear must work with the silhouettes and trends in apparel. I particularly pay attention to the hemlines, the prints, colors, textures and notions used in apparel as well as the direction in the trouser legs (narrow, stovepipe or boot cut) because it all affects the proportion of the vamp of the shoes. The American consumer is a busy multi-tasker and shoes must be easy to wear, to clean and deliver comfort for long busy days.

6. What is next for Asgi shoe designs?

You will see more of an Italian design influence incorporated into Asgi shoes. The shoes will feature bold colors and rich textures for a sophisticated look. Through our Italian-American design collaboration we incorporate the finest materials and stylish creations.

For more information about Asgi shoes and to find a retailer near you, visit

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*NEW* Product Reviews!

I look forward to trying out and promoting great new shoes and accessories. If you want to submit a product for review, just contact me. I will feature your product on my blog under the category “Reviews”, and recommend it to others when I’ve fallen in love with it! I’d also love to interview shoe and accessory designers, it’s always great to make new friends!
Once my store is up and running (this summer), I will consider selling the products that I’ve tried out. I will only sell shoes that I personally would recommend to my friends! :)

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