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Footwear round-up

Drapers takes a walk around the Pure Footwear section to swot up on autumn 12’s key styles.

Despite an unseasonally warm autumn 11 season, footwear brands at Pure London have not taken this as a signal to move away from boots for autumn 12.

Walking around the footwear halls at Pure London, boot styles are overwhelmingly present in some form or another, with several brands telling Drapers that 1970s-style, round-toe knee-high boots with block heels will be a key trend for next season.

Other trends that were seen on last season’s boots continue for autumn 12, with hiking details on both heeled and flat styles and shearling lining also making a return. “The shearling-lined wedge ankle boot was one of [Xti’s] best- selling styles for autumn 11 so they have repeated it for autumn 12,” says Dave McDonough, director of Epic Footwear, which distributes Spanish brand Xti in the UK.

“Given the warmer weather last winter, we saw more people buying ankle rather than full-length boots, and so I think ankle boot styles, whether heels or flats, will continue to do well,” adds Graeme Nichol, sales director at distributor 33 Joints, whose brands include Blowfish Malibu, Feud and Rubber Duck. “It’s a tough climate so it’s important to offer something for everyone.”

Away from boots, platform block-heeled courts come in a range of colours including red, purple and black, with suede the most popular fabric choice on the upper.

“Having the more glamour-led styles in your range, even in the autumn season, is important as consumers, particularly younger customers, are buying into those styles,” says Nadene Stevenson, director of footwear distributor UK Sole, whose brands include Ruby Rocks. “Colour has been really important for spring 12 and that will continue into autumn, so we’ve got a lot of colour in our range.”

Isabel Marant’s iconic wedge-heeled trainer has also proved an inspiration for many footwear brands at Pure London, while spring 12’s trend for animal print on the upper carries over to autumn, with leopard, cheetah and tiger print styles all evident.

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