SHOE ENVY: 5 Minutes with Jean-Michel Cazabat

Oct 01, 2012 - by Amanda Gabriele

Last week, I ventured to Saks Fifth Avenue's fabulous 10022-SHOE floor to interview the very handsome and talented Jean-Michel Cazabat. We talked over his fall collection about his inspiration, why his shoes are both sexy and comfortable and what we can look forward to for Spring 2013. See the Q&A and collection photos after the jump.

AG: So what do you think of the new Saks shoe floor? JMC: Oh I love it. Its beautiful and I am very happy to be here.

Can you talk about the inspiration behind your fall line? For me, the inspiration is Michael Jackson. Why? Because when he did the Bad video, he was wearing the leather zipper jacket, like a biker. So this was the inspiration behind a lot of the boots, however we have a more sophisticated version. We are mixing black pony, metallic snake and tweed. It is for the lady who wears Chanel. This tweed is from Linton; its a company in Scotland who also makes Chanel's tweed, so its really sophisticated.

Its gorgeous. Its like the Chanel woman can be a little punk if she wants to. Yes, she is punk, she is funky and she is Chanel elegant. Do you know the cult movie from the 60s Easy Rider? Dennis Hopper is wearing the suede jacket with fringe. That piece was an inspiration to me for this collection. That is why I did the fringe boots.

Your shoes are known for being very sexy but comfortable too. Why is that aspect of design important for your line? It's important because it doesn't work when a woman can't walk in her shoes. I want women to feel comfortable because I love women too much and I dont want them to suffer. Because if they suffer, they make us pay the price twice. (I laugh) Its true though, you know Im right.

I love that your collection is full of bright colors and bold, flashy details. I love to use special materials like metallic leathers and glitter. I love the metallic Italian suede in this collection because it's extremely soft. I love to play with color too. So for example here, you can see the mix of cobalt suede with emerald snake or fuchsia snake. The inspiration for me is the every day working women who needs something both sexy and comfortable.

What are some of the biggest shoe trends you've seen this fall? In general, fringe is strong as is that little bit of biker chic. Of course the platform is still huge. Me, I always try to cover what I like but at the same time not forget what women need.

And what about spring? What can we look forward to? Well have a very interesting mix of materials and lots of snake with prints - one is the color of the Brazilian flag. Spring is a combination of romantic and disco with a lot of floral prints and a mix of metallic, disco-oriented details. We'll have a few funky neons. Like when you cook, you have different ingredients you mix together and you have to make sure it's the right amalgamation so it looks and tastes good. There has to be chemistry between all of the elements, and spring is going to be just that.

Shop Jean-Michel Cazabat and more at Saks.com.

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