Esperanza and R & E Shoes 2011

Since I featured Randa yesterday, I thought it only fair to check out some of the other big shoe labels in Japan.


The cut-out heels we’ve seen elsewhere have made their way into the collection, and I especially like the tie-dye and metallic silver boots here:


Unusual platforms are also to be found in the sandal section – it seems the footwear designers have adapted some quirky elements from couture shoes into their high street lines. I adore these anything-but-boring floral platforms with the fabric extrending down the heel:


The fringing seen in the wild-western clothing trend has also surfaced in the boots – my faves are the blue suede. One – because I love bright colour, and two – because everyone needs to own a pair of “blue suede shoes”!


Some boots have been opened up to make them cool enough for the warmer months. The floral tapestry style would go really well with Dolly Kei or girly gyaru outfits:

Goth girls are going to love these next boots, which in addition to coming in black, each feature a little skull, bow and rose!


Retro spots, gingham and bright colours take the spotlight away from the edgier styles and bring fun and girliness to the fore:


R & E or Rosessence

The standouts for me are the platform brogues (first seen in-store in January), although there are more sedate brogue versions available too (which again, would suit dolly kei and mori girl wardrobes well):


The retro theme continues here as well, with spots, checks and nautical stripes in evidence:


Likewise the 70’s trend continues with rope, cork and wood heeled platforms:


..and the ubiquitous fringing (combined with hanging beads for a little je ne sais quoi):

A mini-trend seen in this collection is the use of charms and chains at the ankle – something to watch for.


Somehow I feel there must be more exciting models still to be released, as most of these from R&E do not make my heart race. I do love the first two from Esperanza though, and will struggle not to bring one of them home with me.

What do you think?

Kokon to Zai or KTZ & Marjan Pejovski

Here’s a brand that’s doing really well amongst indie hipsters on both sides of the Atlantic. Fashionistas in japan are lapping this label up as well as London types.

Kokon to Zai (KTZ) is the brainchild of duo Sasko Bezovski and Marjan Pejoski, begun in 97 but really surging forward from 08 when it took up its new digs in Notting Hill, and started collaborating with Top Shop and ASOS.

It certainly garners lots of opposing opinions with some people calling it (as part of Nu-Rave) the worst trend in the world (Searching for Style), to people gushing about it like Happy Because, and, well, Susie Bubble.

I love it because it is offbeat and highly embellished. There is a lot of detailing, quilting, embroidery, gem work or intricate patterns.

Some patterns, like the yellow camo are too screamingly loud for me, but I applaud the audacity. I definately prefer the quilted dress on the right, a photo of which I included in my post on Tokyo’s Fashion’s Night Out:

How hot is this label? Susie Bubble has worn it, Madamoiselle Yulia has worn it (see above), Katy Perry, Anna Dello Rosso, Bjork, Park Bom..the list goes on. Check out their facebook page for updates, or the “As worn by” section of their website.

Lady Gaga wore these glasses by Linda Farrow, now available at KTZ:

There’s also an unusual range of platform wedges (again, with that retina-searing yellow/pink/purple combo):

Statement dresses are another staple: 

One of my faves, that I’ve giving SERIOUS thought to buying, is the Priss Pink Flower Bomber jacket with hood. There’s polka dots, always a quirky plus for me, but also these brilliant oriental floral sleeves and fab contrast V shaped inserts and lapels. I care not that it’s a hoodie; I just love the contrast between the floral and the spots.

The latest range has a number of beautifully embossed leather dresses, gold motifs, and medieval fleur-de-lys motifs and crowns, and I’m really looking forward to seeing more!

Get the look for less – Nicholas Kirkwood – at Charles & Keith

Just arrived back today from my Malaysian holiday and too tired for a detailed post on the trip.  BUT …I did want to share with you one of my amazing buys when over there.

I just discovered a great shoe boutique that is based in Singapore but has stores in over 25 countries – Charles & Keith. They have very fashion forward looks that stop just short of being knock-offs, for very reasonable prices.

When I first laid eyes on these exquisite babies,  I was in love:


They have the same eccentric heels as Nicholas Kirkwood uses, and are *ahem* indeed very similar all-round, except being slingbacks whereas the Kirkwoods are almost booties:


 I love the different textures of the leather such as the mock croc, as well as the metallic colours, and of course the unusual platform heels. Named “Sexy Luxe”, they are part of the Signature Label Collection, and as well as other fantastic shoes, there are handbags, belts, sunglasses and more in stores.  Check out the Campaign lookbooks and videos – oh, and the online store!