Spring is finally in the air, and although we are living in strange times, I feel the simple pleasures of a light spring breeze and that first warm sun is pure nectar. When re-evaluating my wardrobe each season, I move around my shoes and change my storage, although this is a tricky time for footwear as often you need a good sturdy sole and something relatively puddle proof to see you through—it actually becomes a bit of a free for all, much to my husband’s dismay (although he has 20 pairs of trainers and counting!). I plan to streamline my shoe-drobe while I have a bit of time on my hands next week (holiday cancelled, along with everyone else’s) and I’ll be moving my lace-up sturdy biker boots to make way for my loafer collection, which have been waiting patiently, fitted with their shoe trees (never own a loafer without one) until these months when come into their own.
Crockett & Jones’s newest SS20 collection is divine, three pairs of perfect spring shoes, practical and serenely designed—I am lusting after every one of them for various reasons, and as always with C&J they have cleverly covered off every base.
Let me start with Laura, she is your ‘go everywhere’ shoe, the Cloud Grey suede (a new colour for them) will match outfits in white, black and every colour in between. ‘This year I took advantage of the paler coloured suedes and leathers that had been bought in for sampling’ says Designer Clare Jones, who gleaned inspiration for these chic loafers when visiting Linea Pelle, the leather fair in Milan.
She came across some interesting buckles which were ‘more contemporary in design than our normal factory stock’ and also an elegant bridal bit which she instantly pictured on one of their loafers. The white V-Lite Vibram sole is eye-poppingly contemporary, and although the chunkiness gives a masculine feel, this is balanced by the soft coloured suede and delicate buckle detailing.
Then we come to Sara, a smarter lace up (a bit like one of my old favourites of theirs, Cora, although more of a plain Oxford style) in Nut Suede, which comes with either silk or cotton laces. Super lightweight (with the same V-Lite Vibram sole), these would work supremely with pale tailoring—even try white if you’re brave and don't have young children—a trouser suit perhaps in a relaxed linen for warmer days when you need something light. Don't wear these with tights, they need to show some ankle and obviously never a visible sock. If wearing with relaxed linen I would go for the cotton laces, and if dressing up then silk would add a feminine texture. Just a thought—safari attire often calls for shoes like Sara, and trainers are just not quite elegant enough.
Ah, Tessa, now she is a little different, a little out there, and harks to the vintage style’s I adore and wish I had more of. These are white calf leather with a leather sole, and you’ll want to keep them squeaky clean at all times—they are that lovely. Again, I’d try them with a full white look, totally striking. But equally they will look fabulous dressing up a pair of pale jeans (dare I say ripped jeans?). The classic loafer style will never fade from fashion—they can be worn by any aged woman, and those with differing styles too—from teenage fashionistas to glamourous grannies. I’ve got it! How about wedding shoes for the bride who doesn’t want to be crippled by stilettos, but to dance in comfort all night long?