Barbara Briones Spring Summer 2011 Collection

Upcoming Chilean shoe designer Barbara Briones has crept onto my shoe radar, and she is definitely one to watch!  I’ve been smitten ever since I laid eyes on her purple tie-dye pump, just one of the beautifully-handcrafted shoes from her Spring/Summer 2011 collection.

Barbara is reviving the shoemaking tradition in her home country, employing local artisans and leather artists in Santiago, Chile to produce her shoes.  The way she mixes various materials and moods with an undercurrent of vintage glamour is extremely charming.

After studying in London at the Cordwainers school, Barbara worked for Mulberry in London, and for Ferragamo in Firenze before launching her line a few seasons ago.  From ankle booties to sandals and flats, the current collection offers something special for every taste.

And, as the designer herself asserts, these shoes are designed for wearing.

Even though what we design should be an object of desire, we cannot forget that it should also be wearable.

To purchase , visit BarbaraBriones.com.  I heard it through the grapevine that soon one of Barbara Briones shoes will be available at Anthropologie!

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Word of the Week: Flatform

I’m sure by now that you’re sick and tired of hearing about flatforms, but I thought I’d define this popular spring shoe style to clarify what makes it so…unique.

A flatform is a shoe with a platform equal in height to the heel, resulting in a high but flat or nearly flat walking surface.  Try wearing them with wooly tights and a pair of skinny cords now, and when warmer weather arrives, freshly exfoliated legs and a cute summer dress.

Jeffrey Campbell El-Cajon Sandals, $120

Take, for example, this pair of colorfully-striped Jeffrey Campbell sandals, which are more attractive than most other flatforms I’ve found.  The towering wooden wedge platform stands 5.5″ tall but has a 2.5″ platform for a leg-flattering style.  Leave your comments – are you liking the flatform?

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Spring Essential #2: Charles by Charles David Canoodle Sandal Bootie

Say hello to spring essentials number two – the sandal bootie!

Charles by Charles David Canoodle

Consider this the ultimate trendy way to transition from winter to spring…the Charles by Charles David Canoodle sandal is made for flirting, featuring delicate lace that covers the foot, and wraps all the way up your ankle. The sexy side cutouts and open toe design coupled with the daring 4″ heel ensures you’ll make a statement wherever you go. A back zipper makes these easy to take the shoe on and off.  The beige version is a perfect companion for spring’s bright garments, but Canoodle is also available in always-flattering black.

Buy It Now: Charles by Charles David Canoodle, $144.95 at Endless.com

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Spring Essential, #1: Sam Edelman Dawson Sandal

As part of this week’s “Spring Forward” topic , I present to you the first featured spring shoe from my closet…

Sam Edelman Dawson Sandal in black

Sam Edelman‘s low wedge “Dawson” sandal is the perfect casual style to complement sheaths, knits and denim. The intricate beading and polished stones create a trendy look that is as versatile as it is edgy. The universally flattering strappy design is flirty, and the soft toe post and covered heel ensure a comfortable fit. I’m sure this will be one of my favorite embellished sandals of the season!

Buy it now: Sam Edelman Dawson, $49.99 at DNAFootwear.com

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Spring Forward With The Season’s Hottest Shoes

Today marks the first official day of spring, which means it’s time to bring out those sandals!  During this week I’m going to present to you a few shoes from my own collection that I just can’t wait to wear.  LOOK FOR VIDEO CLIPS! :)  I’ll be showing off embellished flats, thong sandals, sandal booties and more, so stay tuned!  Now here are my thoughts on some of the top shoe trends for spring 2011:

Espadrilles

My favorite!  This is a popular look every spring, but this year look for flats, wedges and even platform pumps with rope soles.  If you only buy one shoe for spring, I suggest the Kelsi Dagger Ivy espadrille wedge, so chic!

Military

The military shoe trend is still going strong, especially when it comes to open toe booties.  These Report Mozelle open toe ankle boots are the prefect way to make your favorite sundress less frou-frou and more fashion-forward.

Flatforms

I am not at all a fan of flatforms.  Sure, this style gives you a bit of lift without pitching you forward on your toes, but I don’t see anything avant garde or “good-looking” about these shoes.  They’re not at all flattering, or easy to walk in for that matter. But I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention them here, because they’re being touted all over the fashion blogosphere as one of the hottest trends to watch.  At least I’m not alone – ShoeBlog wonders why flatforms are sweeping spring shelves.

Statement Wedges

The higher and brighter, the better!  I particularly love wedges with bold prints, like these Julian Louie for Aldo wedge booties.  Wait until you see my Michael Kors wedges, they’re super-high, super-light and I swear I can wear them all day long.

Embellished Flat Sandals

This week I’ll show you my favorite new pair of flat sandals, with plenty of elegant embellishment.  No one should have to resort to regular old flip flops when you can wear these Jessica Simpson embellished thong sandals!

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