Monday June 11, 2012
Summer spirit from Charles & Keith
CALL it a reflection of mid-year madness but, for most career girls, nothing is sexier right now than a spur-of-the-moment vacation. Whether it is to the powdery white beaches of Ibiza or the captivating coastal villages of India, the perfect pair of shoes will undoubtedly help you conquer – or at least, navigate – the world.
It is with this in mind that Charles & Keith infused some fun and frivolity into its Summer 2012 Collection. Launched at Suria KLCC recently, the event was attended by more than 100 guests comprising media mavens and fresh-faced celebutantes such as Aishah Sinclair, Carmen Soo, Hannah Lo, Sazzy Falak and beauty queen Kimberley Ann Estrop-Leggett, all putting their best foot forward in this Singaporean label.
Guests sipped champagne surrounded by overhead plasma screens, projecting behind-the-scenes footages from the Summer 2012 ad campaign. On each cocktail table, live gold fish dart about in bowls, competing for attention.
Soon, the place fell silent as 10 models took to the runway, the nude colour palettes of their skirts and blouses offset by the fierce shoes of the Tropicaland collection. Featuring a variety of traffic-stopping hues, from citrusy yellow to zesty orange, these sandals will brighten up any wardrobe.
If this doesn’t get you pining for summer, the tropical flora prints and jungle motifs on woven espadrille wedges surely will. Pair it with structured raw canvas sling bags, cherry-red lipstick and oversized sunnies to draw looks of admiration.
Here, the audience learns an important lesson: if unsure how to embrace colour, take a cue from the models and wear them with neutrals. Those who are brave enough, however, should mix their bright heels with other bright colours. After all, one of the season’s biggest trends is colour blocking, whereby fashonistas are encouraged to sport more shades than what you see at a Lady Gaga concert.
But if the show was any indication, fashionistas can also substitute colour for shine with the Charles & Keith’s Urbanite Collection. With their glossy surfaces of shiny silver and liquid gold as well as towering five-inch heels, the shoes are reminiscent of the gigantic, gleaming skyscrapers of New York.
There’s also the Armour Collection, an army of sleek and ultra modern heels. Coupled with satin and suede, these heels are an interesting take on modern minimalism. The message is clear: instead of reaching for the black pumps next time, try a shimmering heel.
Of course, not all of us are brave enough to experiment. The not-so-bold can play it safe with Charles & Keith’s Neo Ethnic Collection. Dubbed “ethnic meets new-age tribal”, the heels in this collection makes a subtle statement, with its low-key hues like neutral brown, contemporary grey and classic maroon. The beauty of these shoes, however, lies not in their colour but in their oh-so-exotic design elements.
There’s a lot of stitching, weaving, braiding and beading but the understated palette means it’s versatile enough to work into nearly any look. And this means you can go bohemian in the office too. All you need are tailored trousers, a chiffon blouse and a few statement necklaces to complete this look.
To feel more like an African goddess, wear heels that are given a nature-themed makeover. Aptly dubbed the Afriluxe Collection, these shoes are perfect for a week of game-spotting at the uber posh Singita Lodge in Africa. And here’s the secret: the simple addition of raw materials like wood and straw on embossed leather strap or heels lend a touch of elegance to what would otherwise be an all-too-simple shoe.
But simplicity isn’t wrong, as the recent appearances of flesh-tone heels on the world’s most famous feet show. In fact, for the folks at Charles & Keith, going nude in an almighty wedge or stiletto is most de riguer. – Louisa Lim