When J.Crew first partnered with London accessories designer Sophia Webster for a shoe collection last spring, the collaboration felt like it was meant to be. Playing off of J.Crew's love for mixing patterns, Webster's collection featured sky-high silhouettes in bright colors and playful prints. Now the brand is rolling out a seven-piece holiday collection with Webster (available online now), which it calls "the stuff shoe fairy tales are made of."
Signature Webster details like tassels and bows come on strappy booties, pumps, and heels that look and feel different from anything else in stores, which makes the ticket prices (between $320 to $695) seem well worth it — with many styles sold out already.
Webster chatted with the Cut about J.Crew's fall-winter shoe collection and how to wear her shoes.
What was the design process like for this collection?
Jenna and Tom presented me with the direction the FW14 collection was taking, and together we were set on defining and using the best materials and styles for this seasons shoe collection. Also, I referenced Jenna’s inspiration board and palette and pulled the colors and fabrics that especially resonated with me.
What kind of story lines did you have in mind with these shoes, as you were designing?
The mood of the J.Crew collection was luxurious and rich, with metallics and wintry woven fabrics. I thought about elements of some of the styles that have been really successful in my own collection, and incorporated my aesthetic with shots of bright colors, my signature stripes, dots, beads, tassels, and bows. Having gotten to know the J.Crew brand and DNA, designing styles for FW14 felt very natural.
Your statement shoes are a far cry from the current trend of comfy, more androgynous shoewear. How do you feel you’re bridging the gap between practicality and personality?
My shoes are all about personality and fun, but this collection is also practical, as the heel heights are mid to low for all styles. I am really looking forward to seeing how women style these shoes into their wardrobes!
Your J.Crew collections run the gamut from graphic prints to stripes and florals. How do you recommend that people ease into wearing these statement shoes if they tend to gravitate toward neutrals?
Confidence is so important when it comes to taking risks in fashion. My motto is to always have fun and be comfortable in what you are wearing, and never take it too seriously.