Shoe Designers Showcase Scene Stealers for Spring/Summer 2014

Kristin Patterson

Across the Americas – from Francal in Brazil to FNPlatform in Vegas – shoe designers and manufacturers are pulling out the stops to impress today’s trend-setters and fashionistas.

Francal Feira, an annual international shoe and accessories fashion fair, is one of the largest events of the year for the Brazilian market. It launches Brazilian designers’ spring-summer collections but on a massive scale. Imagine a combination of a mall and a concert hall – with stores from aisle to aisle as far as the eye can see and energetic music pumping through the sound system. Francal brings together established and emerging brands to showcase their newest looks in an effort to bring Brazilian culture and style to the rest of the world.

From flip flops in colorful, playful styles to suit every size and taste to sexy stilettos in brights, metallic and animal prints – there are shoes to appeal to every market around the globe.

Arriving at the Las Vegas Convention Center for FNPlatform is awesome in every sense of the word. Different than Francal in format – but similar in bringing together more than a thousand emerging and established brands.

Like in Brazil, there are strappy stilettos and flirty pumps in fresh colors and textures, but there is decidedly less glitter and bling in the states. Booties, shooties and sandals all find their place in the spring season’s offerings. There are shoes that emphasize feminine, womanly curves and silhouettes and the borrowed-from-the-boys trend that has the ladies lacing up for masculine chic can look downright dangerous. For the girly girls, there is lots of sparkle, pale tones and shades of grey. Highs and lows are everywhere. Hectically high platforms and wedges are easier to find than they probably are to wear while the ballet flat, now cap-toed in metallic often with an embroidered crest is clearly part of the global footprint.

Not only are these trends popping up at trade shows, but the PR and social media world has taken notice as well from bloggers focused exclusively on footwear to a steady stream of fashion images on Instagram as evidenced by New York Fashion Week. Today, everyone is a fashion photographer, trend-setter and buyer.

With Coterie and Sole Commerce starting today, we’ll get one last look at the Spring/Summer 2014 collections as this summer comes to a close – and we anxiously await Fall/Winter 2014 collections at FFANY in December.

For more updates on fashion and footwear, follow @PAN_consumer

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