For such a sophisticated line with international appeal, Perla Formentini’s shoes are inspired by something very close to her heart: home.
“We are surrounded by renowned Italian art and architecture,” says co-founder Bianca Tse of Marche, Italy, an idyllic, hilly region on the eastern Italian coast. “Even the Mediterranean buildings we walk by every day are works of art. It’s inevitable that our surroundings are reflected in our color palette and in our leathers.”
Whether a sepia-toned metallic sheen or cutout patterns inspired by the history of the Italian city, each Perla Formentini shoe, which range from ballet flats to heeled boots, reference a quality from their hometown. And while the shoes don’t necessarily follow current trends — the classic silhouettes have a timeless appeal — the designs are still modern: silver hardware keeps sandals edgy and high-shine leather amps up a pair of oxfords that are anything but traditional.
Of course, Italian leathers alone can break budgets, but what sets Perla Formentini apart is their ability to provide high-end luxury at an affordable price. Because they keep their manufacturing in-house, this gives them “the unique ability to ensure high quality materials for shoes at a contemporary price point,” says Tse. Not only does this help set the brand apart from competitors, it also gives women a chance to own some exceptional shoes without that all too familiar feeling of shopper’s remorse.
To read the full article head over to ComposureMagazine.com
Hop on Instagram, and you’ll find on the “Explore” page alone a heavy roll of highly edited photos that look just too good to be true. You’ll read stories on how some users spend hours shooting just for a single, tiny square post. Imagine the time spent taking 200 photos to just pick one.
It’s a game. Even I have to upkeep social media for my writing—the ultimate love/hate relationship. I’m much more shy about the selfie or selca trend and prefer to hide behind something if I can, but every once in awhile I’ll step in front for an independent brand I purchased and really support.
Then Japan’s popular WEAR app fell into my lap when a good friend and journalist for Harper’s Bazaar China, Stacy Fan, told me to just give it a go. I highly trust her opinion based on her approach to fashion with intricate reviews of designers and in-depth interviews on Eurasianvogue.com.
She explained WEAR was image based as well, but much more approachable with very little editing and filters. It truly is. I get a view of every day style from Japan to China to Europe. There’s no heavy photoshop or flawless product shots. It’s simply what people wear right as they’re heading out the door. Eclectic to polished, there’s really something to appeal to anyone with a semi-interest in street style.
Though recently launched in the United States, I still find a decent amount of unfiltered, raw images. At the same time there’s stylized shots now. I still give them a nod for creating a crisp, clean image, though my heart is chasing after those more realistic photos.
Trends vary by country, and you can pick this up quickly on the app. What we might favor in the United States, won’t be happening in Taiwan. I spend a couple hours a day on there looking for inspiration and also out of sheer curiosity. I find the Japanese are as shy about photos as I am. Many block their face with cute emoticons or graphics so the focus rests solely on their outfit. This is how I feel clothing really is meant to be, just another necessary aspect of our lives, but we still find some way to express our individuality.
Ultimately, WEAR’s lookbook style platform is Instagram from fashion only, but without all the fuss of numbers and engagement percentages.
While you’re at it get ready to participate in hashtag challenges across some of the major media platforms Vogue, Refinery29, W, T Brand Studio for the New York Times and Teen Vogue. Here are a couple to show you how WEAR has made their recent splash into the U.S. Markets and to motivate you to take a peek at why this app has been downloaded 8 millions times:
“I want to deliver timeless classics — a wardrobe staple that elevates…”
It took just one look: The beautiful silks and streamlined jackets of Australian designer Natalie Chapman’s namesake line had us completely smitten. And now those of us Stateside don’t have to fly halfway across the world to get our hands on her chic offerings — Chapman’s moved her entire Sydney headquarters to our backyard, in Los Angeles.
Heavily influenced by her travels, Chapman’s designs bring a more European, city chic aesthetic to the West coast, balancing out the casual, beach-ready looks L.A. is known for. “I particularly love Parisian women and their no-fuss attitude and refusal to compromise their style choices despite motherhood and work demands,” says Chapman. “I have traveled extensively and have an enormous respect for European women and their style choices.”
While influential celebrities like Zendaya and Kendall Jenner are already sporting her on-trend chokers, we love her smart, sophisticated double-breasted blazer and wide-legged jumpsuit. Other standouts in the line include Chapman’s signature pieces: her tuxedo jacket and the slip dress. The deep, jewel-toned shade of green used for the “Slip V” dress has us ready for cold weather layering and is perfect for pairing with other earth tones
big this fall. In contrast, by going for a tailored yet relaxed fit on the tuxedo jacket, Chapman provides a versatile option for almost any body shape. The longer length elongates beautifully.
In addition to her travels, Chapman’s sleek aesthetic is “inspired by my customer who dresses to feel empowered and confident in herself.” She’s also mindful of her customer’s real-life concerns. Longevity may be a novel concept in the era of fast fashion, where the speed of design and affordability seem to be king, but Chapman wants customers to invest in a piece that will go well beyond one fall or spring. “I am not a big believer in following trends,” she says. “I believe in reinventing the classics. I didn’t set out to create a product that will last my customer a season and then be ‘out.’ I believe that if my customer is investing in me and in herself, I want to deliver timeless classics — a wardrobe staple that elevates and empowers her, not just for now but for years to come.”
Catching up this week on posting more of my work with Composure Magazine: Trend Story + Layout Design! Read more in-depth celebrity interviews, beauty editor favorites and fashion profiles at Composuremagazine.com and be sure to buy the print issue from the shop!
Labor Day may be the unofficial end of summer (and the kickoff to the fall fashion season), but temps are still soaring. Navigate the long holiday weekend with some fabulous fall-toned styles.
STORY: Min A. Lee
Summer’s Last Hurrah: Labor Day fashion
Minan Wong Fitted Sleeveless Ponte Top, $110, minanwong.com
Blue Shirt Shop Mercer Shirt, $158, theblueshirtshop.dl1961.com
E. Shaw Jewels Lapis Lazuli Articulated Bracelet, $150, eshawjewels.com
101.Watch Christian Paul Whitehaven Grid Watch, $139, 101.watch
In partnership with 101.Watch‘s article/blog section, I share with you some styling advice featuring the amazing brands you can find at 101.watch. With a keen eye on the designer watch industry both internationally and here stateside, Sona and Karel work together to pick out timeless, yet modern, pieces that perfect for today’s street style fans.
From Karel, “selling wristwatches that are made by small, independent manufacturers was our main goal. We wanted to allow to our customers to own unconventional and trendy, yet affordable, timepieces.”
Read an excerpt from the article below and see some of the favorite blue styles:
Riverside and Airy Blue are the selected pantone favorites for their calming properties and complementary ease. In this world of fast fashion and digital influence we work to find you designs that stay on top of these runway trends, but also provide a sense of exclusivity. Everyone looks for that statement piece that will pique conversations, and 101.Watch favorites Christian Paul and TechnoSport provide just that!
With a vivid blue leather band and contrasting grid face, Paul’s unisex Balmoral time piece can be combined flawlessly with your fall neutrals. Think tailored trousers and a sports jacket, add in a pocket square of the same bold hue for sophistication. We tend to opt for darker navy, but you’ll find the brighter color of Balmoral is very diverse.
If your closet is full of athlesiure and urban wear, shop our TechnoSport brand. The Aviation TS-100-3AV’s mix of blue silicone and rose gold hardware provide that cool, streetwear vibe. With excellent craftsmanship that looks and feels like a thousand dollars on your wrist, you’ll find it’s actually quite budget friendly.
Also another blue option for fall is TechnoSport’s Dreamline TS-100-16. You’ll always capture attention with the neon yellow second hand. The best part about TechnoSport timepieces is the 10 ATM water resistance. You can swim or shower with them without retaining water damage. Definitely break these out for your most active days!
White shoes don’t have to be limited to your plimsolls and sneakers, there’s a variety of dressier options available to you. Don’t let the colour intimidate you. Let us help you navigate the tricky world of wearing white shoes to keep you looking style savvy.
Men’s white shoes aren’t exclusively contemporary. If we take a quick peek at the history of footwear, white shoes were quite popular during the 1920s. Brogues were favoured in brown or white. Other commonly worn styles were two-tone Oxfords and saddle shoes, both sporting the same beloved combination of brown and white. Rather formal during that period, white has now breached through those dressy boundaries.
The main concern with any vivid colour is the risk of standing out to much. Therefore, when trying out more formal types of white shoes, you may find it can be difficult to pair them with black or dark blue pants. You’re dealing with two extremes of the spectrum, and they can come off as being too flashy during special occasions. Depending on how you style these opposites, you can find a middle ground between the two. Finding that compromise is what will keep your appearance tidy rather than kitch.
Starting off on the easier side, white sneakers are simplest to work with. Due their casual nature, this is when you can pair dark trousers or denim with white trainers. There is more give to relaxed outfits. Sweatshirts and t-shirts are ideal if you are aiming for athleisure. Work in a plaid button down shirt and roll up the sleeves. Distressed denim is another go-to that looks flawless with white trainers.
Also, graphic designed tops and jackets are a great choice. These clothing styles won’t over or underwhelm your shoes. In fact, white is a great canvas for working in more avant-garde styles.
With Semi-Formal And Business Casual Clothing
Office settings and cocktail events can be tricky for white shoes. You can’t wear your favorite trainers, so your options settle around Derby brogues, monk straps and sleeker ankle boots. Avoid patent leathers, and look at smoother grades and nubuck leathers. They’ll have a softer appearance that’s easier to style. Suede leather will prevent your outfit from looking overly formal.
Tailored trousers and more fitting bottoms will help show off your shoes. You don’t want to cover up the white. It will look as if you’re trying to mask your shoes. Properly hemmed lengths only help you add sophistication to your look. When it comes to colours, pale dove grey and light beige work well. These tints complement white shoes for men. They don’t create a huge break in your appearance either.
If your style preferences tend towards the darker or brighter side, there are ways to make white work for you. You may be surprised, but bright colours like coral and royal blue look amazing. Going for shorts will help tone down the high intensity of the white. Wearing dark trousers or jeans with a lighter blazer or sports jacket will also have the same effect. Paying attention to accessories will help draw eyes to your entire outfit as opposed to just your shoes.
With Formal Clothing
Working with Oxfords is probably the most challenging task. Traditionally these shoes are black or brown. White on the other hand, despite being more uncommon, actually comes up quite a bit at weddings. The groom won’t always be wearing black. You’ll come across all white tuxedos, or white bottoms with a black jacket. In these specific cases, white Oxfords are a perfect match.
Another way to work white in to a formal situation is pairing it with a light grey suit. You want to keep it tailored and very neat. Tie-clips will help drive in the formality. Wear a shirt that you have to use cuff-links with. Since you aren’t going for the tuxedo, you want to keep everything as elegant as possible.
Your shoes need to be especially clean. Given the colour, try to keep them clean in the best way you can. If you aren’t too sure about how to get rid of dirt or scuffs or you’re wondering how to keep them polished, check out this handy tutorial below. When in doubt, have them professionally leather cleaned to avoid further damage.
Best White Shoes
Here at The Idle Man we’ve covered some of the best shoes a man can own in every colour and pattern. Looking at white specifically, here’s a breakdown on some of the top picks to add to your collection.
All White Shoes
Converse has been creating their classic sneakers since 1917. The All Star, originally made for basketball, is now one of the most famous styles worn by men around the world. When we think of classic, all white shoes, All Stars comes to mind pretty quickly. They’ve become iconic within the art and music worlds, they’re all over film and television, and Converse is now a true household brand .
Nike has roped in a gigantic following with their Air Force 1 style. Avid fans of streetwear brands will keep on top of every new release. You’ll see people queuing outside stores hours before a new design is about to drop. A huge proponent of hip-hop culture, the crisp all white Air Force 1 has hardly changed from its first introduction in the 1980s.
Men’s White Loafers
Vayarta put their own spin on white loafers with a chicer, more minimal design. The sole is made of a flatter and softer leather similar to that of an espadrille. This is a change from the usual hard leather and rubber covered heel. Slip them on with a pair of chino shorts and a chambray shirt for the weekend. Their no-nonsense design makes them easy to pair with any type of accessory.
Tod’s keeps their loafer design very classic. If you’re not a fan of contemporary looks, Tod’s consistently traditional design across all their loafers and moccasins make their men’s white loafers a solid choice. Easy to slip on and off, these luxurious loafers can be dressed up or styled to fit your relaxed wardrobe.
Men’s Summer Shoes
Sperry’s white boat shoes are a must-have for summer. They keep their boat shoes looking current with updated fabrics. Crisp white canvas that’s easy to care for will make your boat shoes perfect for wearing them daily. To maintain that fashion forward appearance, don’t grab your usual t-shirt, wear your white boat shoes with an edgier white button down.
Birkenstock creates the ultimate men’s summer shoe with their most well-known Arizona sandal. The wide double straps and simple design has left some to wonder how to wear them stylishly. It’s definitely possible with a pair of skinny jeans rolled up and a short sleeve shirt or a solid, clean t-shirt. You’ll look surprisingly sharp.
SUAVS’ white mesh slip on is extremely breathable for that summer heat. If you’re going to be running around all day, comfort is key. The leather strap helps hold the shoe’s shape and add a bit of modern detail to the all-over mesh. These are the perfect shoes to go sockless with.
For the top white shoes to add to wardrobe head to theidleman.com and shop for your favorites!
Trend story + Layout done for Composure Magazine’s most recent print issue available here. For more fashion, beauty and celebrity stories and in-depth interviews be sure to visit Composure Magazine weekly!
From the story:
“Wanderlust visions of exotic beaches and Mediterranean blues inspire a sartorial rainbow of turquoise, cerulean and every blue in between.”
Summer layouts have always been a favorite of mine to work on because the trends are so feminine and colorful after several months of darker tones. I do love how women work trending pantone palettes into pieces that may not necessarily fit the current fad. I hope you find a ton of inspiration from this range of blue for your daily dressing. ~ Min