What are the key trends for SS18 – What’s in, what’s out? Colours, fabrics, styles etc.
Sneakers have established themselves as the go-to season after season now and we are seeing them worn across the board, dressy to casual for almost every occasion. Espadrilles are also huge for summer and are a great way to stay comfortable while embracing the feminine trends. Strappy sandals, flat or heeled, are another warm weather must. Pink, everything from soft rose to hot cerise, is the colour of the season and a really fun way to embrace colour.
High heels or flats, what’s more, popular this season?
Both. It really depends on the occasion. While we have seen the sneaker dominate with its versatility and comfort, as people tend to dress more casually, there are some events that just demand something a little dressier or more sophisticated and the heel will always hold its own here.
Tell us about the current craze around sneakers.
Sneakers are cool and, most importantly, comfortable. People are happy to invest in these as they know they’ll get maximum use out of them. When worn right they can completely transform your whole look and they are often an effective way of embracing a seasonal trend.
What’s the perfect shoe/style for the Spring Racing season? What clothing would you pair this with?
I like a platform with a block heel for races. It’s much more comfortable to stand in all day and you don’t sink into the grass! It’s practical while still being feminine and you can pair it with just about any style of dress.
What’s the perfect shoe/style for summer casual and what clothing would you pair this with?
Espadrilles are the perfect casual summer shoe to me. They can be worn with anything from jeans and pants to skirts and dresses and they add an easy, relaxed element of style.
What’s the perfect shoe/style for the beach and what clothing would you pair this with?
For the beach, I would go a flat thong. Go as classic or embellished as you like and wear it with denim shorts or a beautiful kaftan.
How popular are embellishments this season? What have you incorporated into your designs to elevate your designs?
We saw a lot of embellishment overseas and we interpreted this in a tasteful way for the Australian market. The range features a wide array of beautiful embellishments and details. Look no further than the wide section of hand beaded; embroidered and detailed slides, sandal and thongs from India. Even more importantly we paired these great fashion uppers with fantastic footbeds for extra comfort.
What are the key corporate trends this season?
The classic pump with its refined silhouette; it’s both an item of fashion and function. We’ve done an array of heights, colours, and materials so they can be worn day to night and work to play.
What shoe styles never go out of fashion?
Either a great ankle boot or a simple white sneaker. These never date and can be worn with any look.
What are your career highlights?
Across a long career, there have been many but the partnership with David Jones and building the Stuart Weitzman brand from the ground up in Australia are definitely two that mean a lot to me.
What inspired you for the SS18 collection?
I looked to Europe for inspiration, interpreting the trends there and re-articulating them in a way that was palatable for an Australian consumer. I love beautiful feminine dresses in the summertime, worn with espadrilles and sneakers – effortlessly chic like you see on the ladies of Paris and Milan.
Tell us about your move to David Jones and what this has done to your brand.
Partnering with David Jones and opening concessions within their stores has been a massive thing for our brand. We have been around for over 40 years and have changed and evolved many times over the years. Being in David Jones has been great exposure in terms of our customer base. It has bought us a lot of new customers who would never have walked into our boutiques previously based on their perception of the brand ie more expensive etc. Being within David Jones has allowed us to experiment and expand our collection appeal to a much broader customer base. We’re judged on the shoes now and how they stand out from the mix.
What has been your most popular collection?
We are forever growing, evolving and adapting. Your current collection needs to be your best collection to date with the aim always to better yourself in the next collection.
Tell us about the manufacturers you work with, and why you choose them?
We are very loyal to our Italian and Spanish supply chain and have been working with many of our factories for over 10 to 15 years. We make sure when sourcing manufacturers that we produce the highest quality product that is both fashionable and functional. We look for the best a manufacturer can offer, and many countries have areas of specialty so we curate a collection that brings this all together in one place. Our goal is to offer our customer a quality product that is a true value for money.
Some people say that you can judge whether someone has style by looking at the shoes they wear. Do you agree and why?
I agree. The shoe makes or breaks the outfit. You can have on the most beautiful dress and put on the wrong shoe and destroy the look completely. Looking at someone’s footwear is a little insight into who they are: daring and fun or classic and conservative etc. How they pull it all together and how they perceive themselves.
Check out Edward Meller’s shoes here.