2018 will see some exciting new fashion trends in footwear, with new fashions this year offering up an interesting and somewhat confusing mix of styles. On one hand, Fashion Week showed us a lot of sparkle, glitter and flash, but at the same time, functionality and comfort is not lost – and more footwear designers are bringing out new lines that combine good looks with something that actually feels good on your feet.
The return of glitter, sparkle and fringe
Caitlin and Danielle, a couple of fashion divas from Chicago who run a popular lifestyle blog called Once Upon a Dollhouse, say that “Fashion is all about self expression, so sparkle like you mean it.” Caitlin and Danielle love some Chanel, noting that “Even Chanel has jumped on the glitter train with their stellar boots!”
Caitlin and Danielle are no strangers to fringe, either, and in the picture below Caitlin is wearing adorable mid-length pink fringe boots, with Danielle opting for silver, both giving a fun retro vibe that is sure to be a major trend in 2018.
Caleb Backe, Fashion and Cosmetics Expert for Maple Holistics, is also a Chanel fan. He says “Just when I thought we’d finally outlived the cliché that is overly glittered apparel! However, brands like Chanel an Oscar de la Renta are bringing them back in a big way – some of these shoes even look elegant. So if you want a pair of boots or heels for those glitzy nights out when looking your best and being the center of attention is everything to you – I’d recommend buying a pair of these.”
Style combines with practicality
There will always be a place for four-inch spike heels in every woman’s wardrobe, but the big trend for 2018 is combining style with comfort and practicality. Caleb points to Mary Katrantzou, a designer well known for bringing out shoes that are both stylish and practical. “Her shoes always seem to push the boundaries of what we’d expect from a shoe in the modern day and age and I would highly recommend checking her range out if you’re looking for something unique and original that won’t have you tripping with every step.”
WORLDboots, a newer entrant to the footwear fashion scene which launched last year with a fabulous star-studded Hollywood launch party, is what happens when you put an orthotist and a fashion designer in the same room. If the meeting doesn’t come to blows, you get WORLDboots – incredibly comfortable, designed to keep your feet healthy, and they look great. The new brand already has some pretty big names behind them, and Samuel L. Jackson called them “dope” and gave them high praise on his Twitter account.
Brocade, and a little look at the ’60s
They may seem a little retro, but they’re definitely fun. Rachel, from SmartFinds.shoes, an online retailer for women’s designer shoes at clearance prices, says “For 2018, the biggest trend we see coming is the peak of the brocade trend. We have seen a lot of this fall already, but think it will continue to be big and even grow in 2018. We have already seen brands like Kate Spade New York and Steve Madden incorporate this trend into their line and we think this will only gain momentum.”
The hit YouTube show “Sneaker Shopping” is also responsible for spotting some of these same trends. In a recent episode, host Joe La Puma visited Stadium Goods in Manhattan – a temple to running shoes and street fashion if there ever was one – with pop star Kris Wu, who went a little shoe crazy in the store. Picking up a pair of Nike Air Foamposite One Galaxies, he said, “I love the retro and throwback.” Fans of Wu will know him by his nickname – “Galaxy 5.” As he examined the shoes, Wu said, “This is crazy. Let’s bring them back! I’m going to take it home.” The retro-looking, ornate Galaxies went into Wu’s shopping bag, which by the time he was done, exceeded $6,000!
Ruggero Loda, founder of RunningShoesGuru.com, says “The trend in running shoes are going to be re-inventing the materials used in shoe midsoles. From the Adidas Boost to Saucony’s EVERUN, Asics DynaFlyte – all companies are looking to find materials to replace EVA. Some brands such as Inov8 are going to sci-fi materials such as graphene and Nike is placing carbon fibre profiles in their highest-level shoes. The brands that will not pursue this innovation will stay behind and 2018 will be full of announcements of new materials being developed and used.”
The focus on high-end materials notwithstanding, the classics never go out of style, and another episode of “Sneaker Shopping” saw Ski Mask the Slump God visiting Stadium Goods, and picking up a pair of Nike Air Max 97 OG “Undefeateds” for $429. In that episode, Ski talks to host Joe La Puma as the browse the store, talking about not having the sneakers he wanted when he was growing up, and his first pair of Air Jordans.
Eco-friendly and ergonomic
On the practical theme, some shoemakers are going a step further in 2018 with more eco-friendly manufacture and ergonomic design. Okabashi, an American-made shoe company from Buford, Georgia, is made from Microplast, which is a recyclable and durable blend of plastic. The shoes are 100 percent vegan.
Footwear brands are also looking to share the wealth, with brands like WORLDboots teaming up with charities like Soles4Souls Foundation, a non-profit that creates sustainable jobs while distributing shoes and clothing throughout the world.
2018 may well turn out to be one of the most exciting years in recent history for footwear fashion. Good looks are still in – and the overwhelming theme for the coming year is the convergence of style and comfort. It will be a happy year for feet.
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