Italian shoes were once the preserve of the rich and the famous, but globalisation long ago put paid to that state of affairs. As the high street becomes ever more diverse stocking brands from around the world, they have become an affordable luxury.
One label that seamlessly combines Italian tradition with modern design and global expansion is Carlo Pazolini, which began life in 1990. This season the brand, which favours a classic aesthetic, has launched in the UK – with a concept store in Westfield White City.
While trends are certainly given due care and attention, heels this season are made from Perspex or Lucite or strewn with glitter, while embroidered leather slippers and blocky mid-heel sandals will be a sure-fire hit with comfort seekers who still care about style.
The aim of the company is to guide its customers through the world of fashion by distilling the trends into wearable pieces that are “stylish, bright and unique”.
While there are plenty of more jazzy, mature styles from which to choose, the brand comes into its own when it approaches design in a more minimal way. Simple leather-strapped sandals in a range of fresh colours are perfect for everyday wear and into the evening, while thin soles on tooled white brogues ensure that the masculine style remains elegant and flattering rather than too macho.
Handbags and small leather goods are available too – with totes, ladylike frame bags and belts in the colours of the season. And men aren’t forgotten: formal shoes are sleek and office-appropriate while casual styles in leather and suede would be a welcome addition to most wardrobes.
From £90, carlopazolini.com