An insatiable desire for fantasy grabs hold of AW 21/22.
Uniformity is out of the question. The season’s bags and shoes have a tactile and visual opulence, expressed with sensuality and resolve, which infuses their shapes, colors and materials. Opulence is also a means to surprise, awaken the senses and blithely underline creativity’s enormous potential to ignite fundamental changes in seasons to come.
The season’s women’s shoes are deliberately oversized, with a generous approach to volume. Their thick chunky forms boast either round buffed tips or slender pointed toes, while geometric shapes are precisely worked, for highly architectural-looking shoes.
Pared-down boots and derbies are worked in beautiful, elegant leathers including glazed calfskin and box calf, with exuberant soles. Boasting platforms or conical heels, they dare to go outsized – notched, exaggerated, with granular or smooth, matt textures – but always featuring a surprising lightness, a guarantee of comfort.
Pumps showcase meticulously sharp, pointy toes. Extremely fine lamb leathers are expressed in perfectly uniform, clear-cut and assertive colors.
The season’s supple leathers perfectly marry the shape of the foot, like a benevolent second skin, to highlight an arch subtly revealed by asymmetric cut-outs.
Loafers borrow from industrial design, cut higher and updated with squared-off toes. Colorfully exotic leathers and calfskins – with lizard, croc and snake-skin look embossings – throw up a surprising hybrid of genres, wavering between a proudly kitschy look and a restrained eccentricity.
Accumulations of boldly, ostentatiously opulent jewels prove to be an interesting way to re-visit the classics. Loafers in grained calfskin leather with restrained lines are irrepressibly irreverent and mix together imposing gilded and hammered chains or jewels with multiple stones unexpectedly piled up, casting accessories in a new role.
Maximalist buckles in new recycled PVC or composite materials – decorated with discreet jewel-like nuggets or shimmering inclusions, – evoke a precious mineral aspect and represent a creative and innovative direction to meet the need for eco-designed products that give a nod to vintage – yet are never old-fashioned looking.
Drawing on a period look, high swashbuckling boots are worked in precious leathers. With a golden or coppery look, they are adorned with more or less complex ornamental decorations, or are wrinkled, creating irregular reflections with an appealing look and feel.
Next season’s bags are scaling up in size and moving towards exaggerated volumes. City shoulder bags are made of very supple lamb leather, refined to the extreme, and astonishingly lightweight despite their appealing roundness. Evoking soft satiny papers, they look like chubby balloons, delightfully childlike and ready for the wind to grab hold of them.
In more pared-down versions, maxi tote-bags in sturdy yet supple leathers are beefed up with accessories – tabs and shoulder straps – in outsized proportions. Metal buckles and clasps go in for a generous roundness, and chains made of recycled and biodegradable plastic look as if they were fully inflated from the inside. Handles are crisscrossed, twisted and distorted for a certain kind of cushy comfort.
Whether worked in very supple leather or water-resistant polyamide, quilted products are lacquered, iridescent, and embellished, and play on original motifs and materials. Paddings accentuate the round volume of bowling bags, and recall the comfort and protection of an oversized puffer you’d like to snuggle up in. This cocoon spirit is also found in the use of extravagant and cozy long-haired furs. Ultra-long, curly and colorful, torn out and vaporous fleeces embrace their lightness, and are worked on bags that go in for a youthful, carefree artlessness.
In more sophisticated versions, bags trim their volumes to an absolute minimum, with their surfaces embellished with opulently piled-up details. Neo-evening bags and purse shapes in smooth-surfaced leathers or thick silk satin in bold, uniform colors feature flounces and outrageous pleats and knots to elaborate highly expressive volumes.
Like good luck charms for the city, tiny bags destined for the simplest of uses – cards, a mirror, earbuds – converge around the neck, turning into chic pendants for festive evenings.
Whimsical amalgamations of offbeat jewelry, opulent flower brooches and extravagant gemstones are the signature of the season’s clutch and bucket bags.
Women’s bags and shoes for AW 21/22 energetically celebrate opulence, and turn to over-the-top volumes, shapes and details to find the extravagance necessary to vehemently express a desire to flee colorless uniformity.
Also see our article on Must-Have Men’s bags and shoes.