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Friday, September 10, 2010

Bronte by Matisse

You Can Be My Heathcliff: The Bronte by Matisse is a darkly romantic fall hit.

Booties. They're big in popularity if not physical stature. There's something about the swift cut of a bootie across the ankle that is so pretty and so wonderful with leggings. They are magnificent with skirts. And shorts. And, well, they just work which is why every fall we're excited all over again to see them. The Bronte by Matisse is no exception. Although, maybe it is. Is it even a bootie to begin with?

The short answer may be no. Built on a slightly chunky heel with chic, sweeping lines, the upper has a typical conservative pump construction: closed heel and round mary-jane toe, medium heel height. A raised seam at the toe is the sole embellishment.

The exception comes above. Attached to the leather is a double-faced, canvas sheath secured above the ankle by elastic. The unstructured, organic look and feel of the canvas is a welcome contrast to the structured look of the shoe. Like its namesake author, there's a Victorian echo to the shoe's silhouette, but its elegance is born of the tension between the soft romantic bootie and the structured, classic upper. That offhand gloss simple means it's a killer shoe with leggings and skirts. Love the way Bronte blouses out from the foot to come in tight against the ankle. That bit above the elastic makes this shoe like a present around your foot. There's some structure here, some slouch. It's as multi-faceted as you are.

Kit it out the same way: structured bottoms and softer, unstructured fall tops in cashmere or fine wools. We'd insert a scarf or cowl neck at this point since the weather seems to have broke for the moment. Jewelry's fair game. The neutral palette will work with pretty much anything you throw at it.

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