February 27, 2008
As Billy Joel sang Saturday night, “There’s no business like shoe business.” Overall I can’t say that the World Shoe Association seemed like a great show in Vegas. I think MAGIC, a week earlier, would have been a better trip. Luckily the materials show adjacent to it was eye opening. If anything, most of what was at the Shoe Show was old news.It was interesting to see many brands trying to craft a “sustainable story,” but in some cases this led to recycled packaging only. However there were a few great things there. Most notably a wide divergence in style.
1. Keen was trying to make a human connection with their footwear via a message called “hybrid life.” Hybrid seemed to mean lots of things when you got down to it, so it came off more as a hybrid message. But still some distinct footwear is emerging from that “brand with the big toe.”
2. Ariat, originating from Equestrian wear, had some nice detailing that crossed-over well to urban style.
3. Taos clogs were just too compelling to go unnoticed.
4. But Best in Show has got to go to a beautiful collection from Columbia called Sergio Tomani. I’ve never seen this brand before but these shoes were stunning in person and these pics don’t do them justice. You can get multi views here.