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December 2010

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  • Is Luxe a Four-Letter Word?: In a post-recession landscape, the demand for designer shoes is tempered by a desire for value and versatility. But will it last?
  • Style Hall of Fame: Our 2010 inductees, the "Earl" Loafer by Hush Puppies and Converse's "Chuck Taylor All Star," join our list of eternally stylish shoes.
  • Evolution Brand: Not one to rest on last season's laurels, James Matush, general manager of Restricted Footwear, discusses the advantages of continually adapting to answer the demands of a rapidly changing market.
  • Delicate China: If 2009 was the year to forget, then 2010 just might go down as unforgettable—for our industry and the world. As everyone tried to define the "new normal" (no one I have spoken with really quite has) and adjust to the consequences of the great financial collapse set in motion more than two years ago, the common thread was this refrain: at least the world hasn't come to an end. Let's all give a shout out for Armageddon being put on hold—temporarily.
  • English Lesson: With a nod to the countryside, Spring '11 wellies honor their aristocratic roots.
  • Hall Monitors: Spotted this fall on the streets of Manhattan, the "Annie Hall look" presents a refreshing blend of retro, utilitarian and collegiate elements rolled into one.
  • American Girl: Solid, stacked and substantial, designers make a powerful statement for spring. Photography by Winona Barton-Ballentine.
  • Basket Case: Whipped, weaved and twisted, men's styles take an indigenous form.

October/November 2010

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  • Face It: It’s no secret that Facebook is changing the way people socialize. But can it change how consumers shop?
  • Selling Wellness: Four retailers addressing different niches share their approach to vending health-benefiting footwear.
  • Fit To Be Tried: Marcia Kilgore, founder and CEO of FitFlop, dishes on why the wellness brand is a lifelong, everyday solution for millions of consumers in addition to those just seeking tighter buns.
  • All-Male Review: Men's spring casuals go au naturel with gritty suede, smooth leather and tough canvas.
  • Reigning Men: Drawing the preppy, the snappy and the handsomely natty, New York’s Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week served as a stomping ground for guys with stand-alone flair.
  • Think Pink: Fighting the good fight.
  • Twilight Existence: Comfy styles in shadowy hues.
  • Rally the Troops: Feminine and military details join forces.
  • Soles4Souls: A Supplement to Footwear Plus

September 2010

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  • What’s Abuzz: Murmurs and musings from the latest trade show circuit.
  • What’s in a Name?: A branding statement, a consumer hook and maybe even a dash of humor, that's what. Here, experts spell out what makes for a great moniker, while retailers dish on what led them to their identities.
  • All in the Family: A born storyteller, Tom Romeo, CEO of Bearpaw, spins a career yarn rivaling any American Dream-like tale of success, complete with stories of fierce loyalty and never-say-die passion, with a few wild tales just for laughs.
  • Trendspotting – September 2010: A look at trends - September 2010
  • Shore Thing: Get your spray tan, hair gel and sky-high heels - it's time to party Jersey Shore style.
  • Ladies Who Launch: Two Ten adds network to elevate women in the industry.
  • Glow: Natural heels and soft colors illuminate Spring's '70s revival.
  • All That Jazz: Razzle dazzle them with '20s-era soft-soles.

August 2010

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  • Spice It Up: Experts weigh in on how to avoid tired retail. By Melissa Knific
  • Olympic Achievement: An eclectic trove of fashionable finds, Opening Ceremony takes home the gold for its ‘fresh, fun and unexpected’ approach to boutique retail. by Leslie Shiers
  • Talking Points: Fueled by the firm belief that everyone wants to be sold something, Angel Martinez, CEO of Deckers Outdoor, discusses why the portfolio continues to do just that: sell a ton of shoes. by Greg Dutter
  • Trendspotting – August 2010: A look at trends - August 2010
  • All’s Well: Toning footwear takes on the Big Apple. by Dorothy Hong
  • Crisis Mode: Always Be Prepared
  • Cut Out: Laser-cut details add graphic punch to spring. Photography by Cleo Sullivan
  • Cuff Links: Cuff Links Covered-ankle sandals put pedicures on display. Clockwise from top left: Joe’s Jeans; Tsubo; Klub Nico; Michael ...

July 2010

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  • Brought to You By…: Athletic brands explore various ways to create product buzz.
  • Stripped: The performance running category goes bare.
  • My Favorite Years: Approaching Dansko's 20th anniversary, CEO Amanda Cabot reveals how the former little clog company has evolved into an industry favorite and a model of corporate excellence.
  • The Wellness Bonus: A Welcome Addition
  • Memory Motel: When it comes to kicks for Spring '11, simple lines, classic profiles and a hint of print offer a laidback sensibility for wherever the road may lead.
  • The New York Kicks: Where the rubber hits the road in the Big Apple.
  • Like Buttah: This fresh, smooth colorway is heavy on the cool factor for spring.
  • Starboard: The boat shoe inspires a new wave of casuals.

June 2010

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  • Pioneer Spirit: Commemorating the brand’s 30th anniversary, White Mountain partners Greg Connors and Kevin Mancuso offer a firsthand account of how a small American manufacturer evolved into a successful worldwide sales and marketing-based sourcing operation.
  • Back to Basics: Streamlined and refocused, the summer trade show circuit gets back to business.
  • Duck, Duck, Boots: Forget hunting season staples: These women's styles come in all colors and heights.
  • Metal Heart: Feminine and masculine collide for androgynous looks. Photography by Aneta Bartos.
  • We Wear Short Shorts: Summer lovin' demands showing some leg. These ladies dare to bare.
  • In the Running: Running is hot. Participation is up as many Americans have turned to a relatively affordable form of exercise, and many more partake in a growing number of charity-related fun runs and walks. Moreover, the industry is on the verge of a potential radical barefoot technology revolution that may change how people run altogether and, subsequently, the types of shoes they will buy.
  • General Patent: A classic material adds a sophisticated sheen.
  • Spring Pickin’s: Experts predict the top trends of early 2011.

April/May 2010

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March 2010

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  • Boot Legs: Ladies draw eyes to their gams in tights and leggings, from funky to chic.
  • 2009 Plus Awards Winners: What business strategies and designs constituted home runs in a year when consumers were extra stingy with their dollars? Our 2009 Plus Award recipients detail their grand slams of the past year.
  • Bow Wow: No bones about it: Our Fall ’10 picks in the comfort category are poised to become man’s (and woman’s) best friends.
  • Stud Finder: Designers minimize their metal addictions.
  • Launching Pad: Charles Liberge, president of Klas Shoes—makers of Rotasole, Strolleez, KlasFit and Roc-A-Bouts—explains how rolling out four new brands in the worst of times turned out to be a smart move.
  • Just Say No: Retailers provide creative strategies for bypassing sales.
  • Trendspotting March 2010: A look at trends - March 2010
  • Show & Tell: I was itching to check out last month’s FN Platform, the market being touted as a “new national shoe show” by event organizers Magic International and Footwear News. After several seasons of trade show change, turmoil and confusion, I was eager about the prospects of meeting with as many industry colleagues as in one hall of the Las Vegas Convention Center (LVCC). Moreover, a show billing itself as delivering affordable solutions for exhibitors was worth seeing for myself.

February 2010

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  • Victor Victoria: Throwback classics and thrift store finds blend masculinity with a vintage primness.
  • Portraits of Anna: Collage, sculpture, sketches and PIGMENT inspire Fall’s most genius works, capturing the beauty AND FUNCTION of the female form and the artistry of creation.
  • Trendspotting – February 2010: A look at trends - February 2010
  • Members Only: Call it genius, call it a mind game—‘exclusive’ online luxury discounters are striking while the demand for bargain shopping is hotter than ever.
  • Mr. Nice Guy: Joe Ouaknine, CEO of Titan Industries—maker of Bebe, Betsey Johnson, L.A.M.B. and several other women’s fashion labels—continues to thrive based on his corporate rule of thumb: do business with nice people only.
  • Science in Stride: IT'S CALLED DNA, and Brooks reports its new technology makes its Glycerin 8 shoe ($130 retail) the first ever to adapt to each wearer’s individual running requirements, offering customized cushioning with every stride. Call us nerds, but this innovation lands high up on the Footwear Plus Cool Index.
  • Nation of Niches: Through localization efforts, major retailers look to win back a diversifying consumer base.
  • Hot Mesh: See-through fabric amps up the sex appeal.

January 2010

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  • Sneaker Fiends: Pristine kicks in neons and neutrals put extra cool in the urban swagger.
  • Sandals That Rock: The Bernardo sandals featured in the company’s latest ad campaign are “very rock ‘n’ roll” in design, asserts Dennis Comeau, head designer and president of the Houston-based line. And while that’s a key reason the model is styled in a leather jacket, don’t be fooled—that’s not just any leather jacket. It was once worn by the late Dee Dee Ramone, legendary bassist for the Ramones.
  • Sexy Boots: Our sneak preview of fall's boot styles.
  • Designer Chat: Rocio Ildemaro
  • European Accent: Edward Kanner, CEO of Kanner Corporation—the distributors of Finn, Think, Gabor and Snipe—on why his current brand portfolio is in step with an increasing amount of Americans.
  • Crazy for Boots: Maximum coverage proved last year’s hottest ticket. Will this footwear’s popularity endure?
  • Northern Exposure: Canada’s Browns Shoe shops cover it all—from $30-vulcanized kicks to $600-plus designer stilettos.