As the skies transform into a cloudless grey and the nights turn into an endless solitude, the crunch of nearby leaves is the only sound that I can hear outside my window. I pick the leaves up and marvel at how the green blooms from summer have now marbled into a greenish orange and I let them fall underneath my high heeled boots, delirious at the feel of autumn underfoot. For autumn is the season where I sip on pumpkin soup and watch the steam rise from my bowl, enveloping me in a heady comforting aura, autumn is the season where I pull on my knee high socks and put on my warm velvet boots to keep me stylish during the cold and autumn is the season where fashion comes alive, where like the falling of the leaves we change colours, no longer bright, but still inspired by nature’s bountiful offerings. Some days I am the autumn leaves, dressed in pumpkin attire that is tinged with burgundy, while in others I am the crystallized moss that lies in wait for me in the woods. Autumn fashion is like playing dress up, and there is nothing I love more than reclaiming my inner child as I wander outside in the half moon darkness, drawing inspiration from the naked starkness of nature. In winter the leaves will be nothing but a distant reminder of what autumn once was and fashion too will go into slumber, as we wrap ourselves up to prevent against the cold. But for now I long for mini skirts and ankle boot combos, as I’m not quite ready to put my legs away just yet, oh no cold you will not defeat me.
And I’m not the only one who refuses to give in to the cold; queue Public Desire, the super-hero of all shoe brands who muscled their way into autumn, to create a chasm in time. No ‘winter’ they exclaimed, our time in autumn has only just began, and begin it did. Out went the pom pom sandals, plucked away by the Hawaiian summers and in came the trusty ankle boot. The boots were a delicious blend of clay and brick red hues, creating a tantalizing shade of pumpkin and strutted in like summer didn’t even exist. And it wasn’t the only boot to make its bid for the autumn throne; the distressed denim peep toe’s towered over the ankle boots with its height and prestige, while the patent perspex boots determined to stand the test of time. But as winter cast its frosty gaze, the boots had to endure blustering winds that threatened their position on top of the autumn throne, but no matter they cried, our time as autumn boots must come to end but winter we are coming for you. Suddenly the boots parted the winds with their courage and they proved that no matter what season came for them, Public Desire were always going to be one step ahead. The deed was done and the throne was reclaimed and as Public Desire settled into their headquarters to watch their boots guard their iron gates, they smiled and told me a wee little secret; Ana, you are the chosen one.
I clicked open my email with surprise and delight in my eyes, marveling that these superheroes had come to me for help. One by one the boots went into my basket, clamoring for my attention and yield my attention they did. Nestled in pink boxes, the boots had been caged and wanted to come out to play. They danced, oh so merrily on my bed, waiting for shoot day with all the excitement of a child in anticipation of Christmas. And when shoot day came, they played their part so well and they too whispered a secret of their own to me. But what was the secret I hear you ask, as you lick that leftover hot chocolate off your parched lips. One boot strode towards me, with confidence and said ‘Ana I have the recipe for nailing the A/W 17 boot trend: it goes sock boots to make the boys wink, peep toes to show off your mani-pedi, over the knees to protect you against winters harsh hand and ankle boots that will help you embrace your long legs. I smiled,gratified at their advice. I was determined to create a lookbook that I could share with you, chronicling all the stories my Public Desire boots had told me. We captured the boots in candid poses, watching as morning sun faded into autumn’s inky darkness one more time. The skies were full of promise and so were my boots, they had been modeled in all their glory and now they wanted their individual stories to be told.
The Sock Boot
The sock boot told me of its rise to power ‘do you remember the athleisure trend, where jackets became high tech and clothing became second skin?’. I remembered it all too well, 2016 starlets like Gigi Hadid would wear their bomber jackets with baseball caps and neoprane trainers and the whole world seemed to fall in love. But sock boots seemed so far from the athleisure trend that I was perplexed by my ‘sock boots’ explanation. But it all became so clear after what she told me next ‘think about it, post athleisure we all desire shoes that give us comfort as much as they are streamlined and the second skin feel of me on your feet feels amazing does it not?’. She was right but what did she mean? Did she mean that the sock boot was a response to the athleisure trend’s need for comfort and could give fashion lovers like me a chance to wear boots that weren’t going to rub our feet raw. And by God she was right, I took the sock boots to town and no blisters were formed, they were light as air and best of all, easy to stash in a handbag.The sock boot was both practical and stylish and hunny, I was living for it. I had no socks on and my feet were bare, but the sock boots enveloped my feet in all the love it could muster. And it felt glorious.
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The Embroidered Boot
The Embroidered Boot was next to tell me their story. What was once confined to ‘aristocracy’ and weddings became a trend synonymous with mainstream fashion appeal. Boots, heels and bags galore were emblazoned in floral motifs, and the rich were no longer the only people who could worship themselves in embroidered glory. Shoefies took centre stage, while the paparazzi fell out of unmarked cars photographing them. It was a magical period of exploration and boots were no longer confined to ‘block colours sans patterns’, instead inspired by the orient or the East, the boots boasted magical patterns entwined with folkloric imagery, woven in a rich tapestry of texture. I grazed my thumb over the recurring floral pattern, marveling at the contrast between rough and smooth, swept up in the headiness of autumn’s biggest boot trend. I lusted after owning multiple pairs, in all the shades of the rainbow. Some were vibrant like blue velvet while others were muted calling to me through slanted eyes. One by one the embroidered pairs would line up,kicking my summer sandals to the kerb, begging to be noticed. They needn’t have asked, I told the embroidered boot that it had won my heart and it gazed at me with wonder and splendor. The embroidered boot was here to stay and the fashion world had sat up and taken notice.
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The Over The Knee Boot
The 70’s called and they want their boots back. Only problem is 2017 is here and there’s no way that over the knee boots are going back into the past anytime soon. At least that is what my over the knee boots whispered to me when I asked them what their story was. The humble over the knee boot told me that they began as a ‘man’s riding boot’ subjected to mud puddles and left out in the rain. But then fashion came running and claimed the over the knee boots for themselves, turning them into models that would walk down the runaway. But they weren’t satisfied with their decorative status and longed to be seen as something more. So they plunged themselves into winter and stood the test of time, plowing frost glazed landscapes and running through dark forests.
The boots became more practical and were lined with faux fur, to protect their mistresses feet from the darn winter cold. Heels increased as the noughties came in dancing and the over knee boots resumed its decorative status, making its way downtown singing. But where are these boots today? No longer are they hiding in my wardrobe but have made their way out into the public with a speculative glance in their eye. Red, black, purple and blue, what was once a brown functional boot is now a shoe not dictated by functionality. But how should I wear you, I asked my trusty booted companion? Wear me with mini skirts, for a 60’s space age vibe or get Boho with a maxi dress. In the end I settled for two worlds; I was the 60’s space age diva dressed in a monochromatic palette of 50 shades of burgundy while in another dimension I went bubble gum pink, ticking off as many trends as I could in one outfit.
I was an off the shoulder queen who found her way into embroidered denim and wandered into a world where pink was the colour of the day.I wrapped myself up in faux suede and found a Princess crown that would make me feel magical. I curtsied into a world made from flowers, where hummingbirds would sway softly on propped up branches, watching over its flower kingdom. I too hoisted myself up the tree but the bird flew away and I was left alone in the branches, with my high heeled over the knee boots dangling below. It seems like the bird had given me blessing to rule over its kingdom after all.
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The Perspex Boot
The perspex boot needed no introduction, before it opened its mouth to tell me its background story I knew what it was going to say. How it graced the feet of Kimmy K, who favored the mesh see through boots that gave an insight into the worlds most notorious reality star’s manicured tootsies. Or how its ‘perspex’ heel made models look like they were floating on air, while their feet were planted firmly on the ground. Or even how it knew that a ‘patent finish’ was my ‘fave’ and its glossiness drew me to widen my eyes in wonder. There was black, pink and khaki too and while others preferred an embroidered mesh finish, my feet remained behind closed doors, blanketed in the warmth of the perspex boots. They danced through crop circles and sashayed their way into the working woman’s wardrobe. They peeped out underneath gingham trousers and toughened up flouncy skirts and dresses, in short the perspex boot was both versatile and stylish, the most perfect boot combination you could ever need. The perspex boot caught me peeping and smiled, it knew the power of its influence over consumers and wasn’t afraid to use it.
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The Ankle Boot
The ankle boot might be lacking in size but as it quite vehemently told me ‘what it lacked in height it made up for in character’ and the ankle boot was right. One minute it was parading its way through a NYC boulyveard angling its way into a photography shoot and the next it was sitting on the frow, mentally taking notes on its competitors and what it must do to take first place. It tried out different textures like faux suede and velvet and played around with heel shapes that would make them stand out. Cracked golden heels became an emblem for hope and were contrasted against bright colours, hoping to make its way into a wardrobe that craved the colour co-ordination that it provided. The ankle boot was very happy that I chose it and thanked me for being the colourful unicorn that it had always known me to be. It wrote me a note in colourful pink and blue and doodled a magical world where ankle boots would rule the roost and the other boots must wait in the wings, waiting for their time to shine once more.
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The Peeptoe Boot
The peeptoe boot was flirting with me and it knew that I was onto it. It turned and ran, cascading over rivers and mountains, flashing its perfectly manicured feet wherever it went, even in the middle of winter. The winter snow created a white blanket, dusting the fields with its magic fairy dust. But wait, what was that, deep footprints etched onto the white landscape, marking their territory in the blurriness of time. It was the peeptoe boot who refused to let winter leave it behind and while the feet lay frozen, the peep toe boot was happy once more. It was confident and sassy when it made its way out of the snow and craved a new beginning where the snow would begin to thaw. As the snow began to melt and winter turned into faded spring, the peep toes were once more given their time in the spotlight, watching the ice melt off the boots encased toes. The boots were finally home.
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*original boots are no longer on the site
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And as an extra treat, why not treat yourself to these bad boys below. From Velvet stretch boots, to denim peep toe boots, here are some extra goodies to keep your tootsies fashionable this autumn.
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Please note I was offered these boots in exchange for this post. I was not paid for this collaboration and all thoughts are my own.