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Fashion Fridays: Franco Sarto Dishes on Spring ’12 Trends

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Fashion Fridays: Franco Sarto Dishes on Spring ’12 Trends

Footwear Plus MagazineFashion Fridays - Sponsored by Cece L'amour  
The Italian Job
Longtime Italian fashion footwear designer Franco Sarto shared his insights on Spring ’12 with the staff of Footwear Plus while he was in town for FFANY. Here are our favorite moments:

What are the biggest trends in your Spring ’12 collection?
The biggest thing for spring is platforms, with volume. The heel can be higher or lower, but the platform is significant.

What about color?
We’re seeing a lot of natural colors with a little bit of metal. The newest trend for spring is citrus hues, like lemon and lime. And color blocking is also important, but it has to be light, and not too strong. Camel and canvas are also big because they combine beautifully with brighter colors.

Any important materials?
Cork is huge because it goes perfectly with neutral colors.

Franco Sarto

How important is comfort to the average woman?

Very. In New York and other cities, you have to do a lot of walking. It’s all about being comfortable. And as you know, and as a rule, the higher the heel, the less comfortable the shoe. That’s why platforms are so popular—because the wedge is so thick, it gives you added cushion. As you see, they are beautiful shoes, but still comfortable.

So women can still be sexy and comfortable?
Absolutely. [Pointing to a yellow kitten heel.] This is comfortable, sexy and feminine. It’s a very hard balance for a designer to achieve. I know perfectly well that women go home after a day of work and say, “My God, let me take this shoe off.” But I want women to be walking around feeling beautiful and comfortable.

Franco Sarto

How is the Italian market different from the U.S. market?
If we were talking about 30 years ago when I first started, it was completely different. But now the Internet has linked together everything. The developed countries, like the U.S., Italy, Germany and France, have become so close in taste.

What inspires you as a designer?
My inspiration is just looking at people. I get inspired by somebody’s hair or clothes. I like to go to street fairs in Italy, and just go and see. I also take inspiration from leather and material fairs that I attend. But the finished product for me is when I see somebody in the street wearing my shoes.

—Audrey Goodson

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