Footwear brands at Bread & Butter Barcelona failed to stir up much excitement amongst visitors to the show.
There was little on offer in terms of trends that was fresh and some buyers left the fair feeling as though they had seen nothing new and would be forced to buy into a rehash of last season’s footwear trends.
The best of a boring bunch of trends came in the form of bold colours, with brights and neons prevalent on 1980s-inspired sneakers. Shades of lemon and lime across everything from pumps to women’s heels and men’s trainers also provided some interest but a question mark hangs over how well these colours will work in the UK market.
1980’s high-tops were once again prolific for spring 09 but this is a trend that has yet to cross over in a big way and the more mainstream UK shopper is unlikely to adopt it. Running shoes were updated with thicker and chunkier sole units and came with bright or neon trims set against muted suedes. Casual hybrids continued to work a low profile silhouette though.
Brands such as Reebok and Sneaky Steve experimented with news finishes with Drapers spotting examples of the blended hombre trend prevalent in clothing coming through on sneakers.
Faux reptilian skins were also key, as a penchant for exotic bling made a showing. Meanwhile the neutral tone canvas plimsolls the footwear sector has milked for the last two years was less prevalent and relaxed deck shoe and loafer styles will provide canvas-weary shoppers an alternative style to spend on next season.
Ghassan Hodieb buying director at Office said: “Bread & Butter Barcelona had not moved on at all and was generally pretty disappointing. It looked like everyone had run out of ideas and as though they thought they would just regurgitate the same stuff. As a result I think that the retailer is going to have to create their own trends to stand out. The brands were offering more canvas plimsolls alongside running styles and hi-tops, so basically we are going to have to work with the brands so we can create our own stamp on the styles talked about and shown.”