Gucci Ophelie Suede Pump, $1195 via Neiman Marcus
I’m generally quite a fan of Gucci creative director Frida Giannini, but most of my admiration comes as a result of her beautiful, sexy, thoroughly Italian ready-to-wear collections. The people who she has heading up the shoe and handbag divisions have impressed me a bit less since she began her tenure with the company, but not so much so that I’ve ever really felt the need to call them out. Sometimes the stuff is pretty, sometimes it’s not, and the two options occur in approximately equal proportions. Usually, that is.
By contrast, I adore the Gucci Ophelie Suede Pumps. I wasn’t particularly impressed with any of Gucci’s shoes from the Spring 2012 runway, but now that I have a better look at these, they’re fantastic.
In footwear design, the question of how to take a black pump and make it feel fresh and interesting and current is always a difficult one. Essentially, you’re asking women to re-buy something that they probably already have in their closet in one form or another. Because of the gold detail at the heel and the T-strap chain, however, these shoes somehow feel like much more than another pair of peep toes in black suede. This design would be almost just as wearable as its much more basic version, though – the gold gives the shoes interest without making it inappropriate. A job very, very well done. Buy through Neiman Marcus for $1195.