“It’s Only Rock’n’Roll !!!.. and I Like It!” These are the words written in the “about” section of footwear designer Jean-Michel Cazabat’s Facebook page, and this is exactly how I would describe the aesthetic of his shoe collection and new store. The French designer finally opened his first stateside boutique at 350 Bleecker Street in SoHo last week, and lucky me, I got to attend the unveiling!
Drawing upon exotic, distant lands, Cazabat showed a collection of women’s suede platform loafers, collared heels, python, and crocodile skin wedges, and leather and metallic booties (ranging from $245 to $425). The men’s collection certainly speaks to the fashion-conscious guy with its use of rock’n’roll metallics and leathers, in a fuchsia, blue, and gold color palette on boots and loafers ($550 and up). Likewise, the store itself was rather edgy with its fire-engine red velvet couches, a fake fireplace aflame, and Vegas-like neon signs.
The designer beamed as guests sauntered in and observed the layout and surroundings. The highlight, in my opinion, was the back wall of glorious shoes (pictured above) presented in what appeared to be gold-dusted cubbies, giving each shoe the attention it deserved. Together, however, the collection of mainly neutral shoes (black, beige, olive, gray, and red) formed a cohesive, rather majestic unity thanks to the ruffles, studding, ruching, and exotic skins incorporated within.
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