When I think of All Saints footwear, I tend to think of biker boots in supple black leather.

This court-shoe style is not only easy-to-wear with the brand’s signature top-to-toe black and grey rock n’ roll looks, but can also work to add edge to your work outfit.









Try the black and red rub-off version with your black suit and a red top.











The green ponyskin version is more for evenings and events.











Grey is a colour which is set to be the next big thing in footwear. It’s an easy to wear neutral, that you can wear with black to avoid the head-to-toe funereal look.










If black is your thing, this suede adds a little texture and softness.


All versions have kidskin linings, and the stunning metallic and leather heel.


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I love it when the High Street does something a little bit daring, so was pleased to see these über-sexy red heels in Topshop.

















With a 4½” heel that Westwood or McQueen would be proud of, and fetishistic lace-up fastening: this is a taxi (or bedroom) shoe that wouldn’t look out of place in the Killer Heels exhibition.

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There have been numerous articles and television programmes about the need for us all to eat less meat. The documentary which prompted this article was the Horizon episode “Should We Eat Meat?  – How to Feed the Planet”.

With so much research and information now available, shoe-wearers face some tough ethical dilemmas.









The facts

Animals produce greenhouse gases, so the more meat and leather are produced, the more the environment is damaged.

We grow protein crops such as soya to feed the animals. Water and oil are used to grow and transport these crops, and more water and oil are required to rear, slaughter, and transport the meat. If we just ate the soya, there would be less damage to the environment, and we would still get the same amount of protein in our diets. Leather supplies would dwindle.

Let’s not forget the forests which are being felled to provide space to grow crops and graze animals. The decimation of trees contributes to the amount of Carbon Dioxide in the atmosphere.

The more meat is eaten, the cheaper leather becomes, as it is a by-product of the meat industry. If we drastically cut down our global meat consumption, leather which has already suffered from massive price increases over the past few years, will become even more expensive.

I have heard one person in the footwear industry explaining soaring leather and shoe prices, by saying “Americans simply aren’t eating enough meat”.







What about synthetic leather?

Perhaps the solution would seem to be: wear synthetic leather. Most leather substitutes used for footwear are made from polyurethane (or PU). PU is a petro-chemical, derived from oil: a finite resource.

Although PU uses somewhat fewer chemicals, and creates reportedly less toxic waste than the leather tanning process, it still damages the environment. There is also the issue of biodegradability. PU does not biodegrade any more quickly than leather.







The options


Buy leather shoes which you know are going to last a long time, and buy fewer pairs.

If leather prices continue to increase at their current rate, footwear will become less affordable and force us to cut down on our shoe-purchasing habits anyway.


Switch to synthetic leather or fabric footwear, and try to purchase from a company which knows and can explain the impact of its supply chain on the environment.


Tempting but unrealistic: move to a desert island, and go barefoot or wear shoes you have crafted from palm leaves.

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Although Chelsea boots are experiencing a resurgence; they actually go back as far as the mid 1800s, and were reportedly worn “daily” by Queen Victoria.

I saw this slightly lower-topped version in Hobbs at the weekend.










This pair have an elegant slanted V cut, which reveals the striped elastic. The toe-shape is neat and petal-shaped, and the leather lining means your feet will remain cool and comfortable.

The best thing about Chelsea boots is how easy they are to get on and off. When you’re late leaving the house, these boots will be your saviour.

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You may have read my post featuring Simone Rocha’s incredibly furry flats, but now fur or faux-fur shoes are everywhere.

Here are a few of the most outrageous:

William Okpo x Brother Vellies

William Okpo x Brother Vellies















Acne Studios

Acne Studios








Giuseppe Zanotti

Giuseppe Zanotti












Maison Martin Margiela

Maison Martin Margiela













René Caovilla

René Caovilla












Would you dare to wear hair?

P.S. The Margiela boots were worn by Kanye West on his Yeezus tour.


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I’m a big fan of the unexpected looks bestowed upon us by designers each season. I particularly like to see the new and exciting footwear carrying models down the catwalk each season.

These soft green leather ankle boots from Maison Martin Margiela were certainly unexpected.












Do they remind anyone else of a certain DreamWorks character?


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If The Shoe Consultant was giving out awards, Miu Miu would win the prize for inspiring but wearable designer footwear. Season after season, Miu Miu never fails to charm and delight its customers.

The majority of the AW14 footwear collection is as sweet as always, but one print stands out as being more edgy than the norm.






These seemingly innocent pointed-toed mary-janes have a 1960s-style print, which at closer glance reveals a gun motif. The imagery reminds me of the James Bond Gun Barrel Sequence.









If you like your Miu Mius heeled, and your pistol-print blue-based, you might prefer the pointed stiletto version.







For sneaker lovers, the metal toe-cap look slip-on is the comfortable way to sport this look.

BUT…should gun imagery be played with in this way? Is this just a harmless, fun print, or is it highly controversial when many of us would prefer to discourage gun use?

Have your say in the comments or tweet me @shoeconsultant

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It was with great sadness that I received the news that the great actress Lauren Bacall passed away this week.

My father had a big crush on Ms Bacall from a young age, and he introduced me to her films. This led to me reading her autobiographies when I was a teenager.

This post is The Shoe Consultant’s tribute to the most beautiful actress ever to have graced our screens…and of course it’s about her shoes.

Lauren Bacall made espadrilles sexy:












































and flats, sandals, peep-toes and wedges:
































































She even had her own lasts at Ferragamo’s:

ferragamo 2

















Lauren: may you rest in peace, and may a little of your sultry glamour rub off on each of us.

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When you think of furry shoes, do you think of Uggs? How about the furry Miu Miu heels from Autumn/Winter 2009? Who could forget Celine’s “furkenstocks” and big-bird yellow stilettos?

To bring the animal out in you this season, try these Simone Rocha sheep-skin mary janes with added bling:

















Warning: do not wear these if there’s even a sniff of rain in the atmosphere.

Wet fur = gross-looking, heavy squelching shoes.


For something more or less slippery depending on how you look at it, the snake version may tickle your fancy:








I do find it hard to resist a fancy flat. How about you?

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Some people get excited at sale time, but for me it’s new season products, beautifully merchandised on shelves (not sale racks) that get my heart pumping.

It is around this time of year when I sniff new season products in the air, and start to plan my Autumn wardrobe.

Clarks have upped their game for a few seasons now, and you can expect to find not only comfortable, but really stylish options from this great British brand.

These are a few of the highlights of AW14:

Blues Melody









This shoe boot offers a new twist on the classic fringe loafer. Wear with a trouser suit, or knee-length skirt. The sturdy block heel adds height without the wobble.









The three textures of leather on this brogue give it a luxurious look which belies its price-tag. This style comes with two sets of laces: standard, or ribbon for a feminine twist.









This flatform Gibson style combines an Autumnal “ox-blood” coloured suede with a pretty patent leather. A more casual style which would stylishly and comfortably take you shopping, or out for lunch at the weekend. These are also available from a Size 2.

Blissful Bee









Who can resist a sexy red shoe? The mid-height is not only on-trend, but will take you out for the evening, without the need to stash flats in your bag.









For those who can’t control their black shoe obsession, this high-shine Oxford works well as a wedge version of a men’s classic. Wear with your favourite wrap dress for a 1970s feel.



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