As a kick-off event for the new season, GDS, taking place from 26 to 28 July 2016, will once again comprehensively reflect all key new 2017 S/S collections, summer trends and innovations in the shoe sector.
Here are nine Labels to Watch as advised by the organiser…
Goosecraft – Rock ‘n’ Roll for your Feet, Hall 5/C28
At GDS this Amsterdam leather jacket specialist will be launching its first shoe collection for the Spring/Summer season. Founded in 2006 the brand remains true to its ‘leather.forever.’ claim with its now second shoe collection. So authenticity, individuality and rock ‘n’ roll chic are now also reflected in the new shoe collection for the 2017 Spring/Summer season. It includes both relaxed casual classics and western-inspired boots for women. Robust boots and classics like deck shoes and Chelsea boots are offered for men. The styles are available in suede and nubuk leather, mainly with soles made of washed leather. Uppers made of monochrome or multi-coloured snakeskin give wearers a fashionable appearance. A real eye-catcher are styles made of silver-laminated, coarse grain leather. The colour scheme ranges from summery brown tones like sand and cognac through to cool grey tones like pale grey and anthracite.
ShoeVita – Four Trillion Opportunities, Hall 5/D22
At ShoeVita shoes customers become the designer. The young Frankfurt premium shoe label offers a configuration system allowing customers to design their own shoes. The 3D configurator functions like a complex modular system that, by company accounts, makes it possible to combine the shapes, colours and materials into four trillion style variations. The 2017 S/S collection offers shiny metallic leather, delicate pastels, radiant sorbet tones and classy prints. Shiny coloured soles round off the fresh spirit of the collection. Offering special comfort is the brand’s own “Soft Sole” and the inner lining that is said to make walking in high heels as easy as in ballerina pumps. At GDS ShoeVita presents, amongst other things, its Mum & Daughter collection that allows mothers and daughters to wear same-design shoes. Alongside this the new men’s collection will also be on show.
Ernesto Dolani – Ultrasoft Italian, Hall 5/C19
The supersoft men and women’s shoes by Ernesto Dolani come from the Italian bastion of classy shoes, the Marche region: they are made with exquisite materials from Italy, developed in Italy according to the company’s own designs and made exclusively in Italy. Many of the high-quality styles made of butter soft nappa or buffalo leather are worked without using an inner lining making them particularly soft and breathable. Uppers are also woven, patched, braided, lasered, perforated, dyed, crumpled or trimmed to look vintage by hand using elaborate techniques. To make sure you make a soft and gentle entrance the shoes boast specially developed soles made of feather-light rubber as well as shock-absorbing and breathable insoles. Lightweight casual shoes and sneaker variations boasting that “barefoot feeling” are offered for all those who like it casual. There are smart moccasins for fans of stylish living and all those who love the air around their feet will be treated to purist sandals.
ECCO Kids – Development of Kids’ Segments, Hall 3/B58
At the coming GDS ECCO will focus entirely on the little ones amongst us. Represented for the first time with a separate kids’ stand, this successful Danish company will place its new children’s collection centre stage thereby highlighting the extension of its Kids’ line in German-speaking countries.
In 2015 the focus was increasingly on the kids’ business and a separate Kids’ Unit was established. This year ECCO has already strengthened the segment with a new shop-in-shop concept. In Spring 2017 three product innovations are to underpin the re-orientation. Based on the popular ECCO COOL collection for adults, ECCO has transposed and extended this style for little wearers for S/S17. Next to the ECCO COOL 2.0 collection the ECCO Kids S/S17 collection will be extended by the ECCO INTRINSIC sneakers and sandals. The collections focus on pale nuances, cool features and playful elements while the anatomically shaped platform supports the foot.
Gordon & Bros – “Goodyear Welted” meets Tattoo Designs, Hall 5/J14
To be uniquely different – is the aim of Düsseldorf shoemakers Gordon & Bros, whose design has been based on three pillars since its founding in 1988: cool, classic, comfort. The latest accent added to the range is the Tattoo special edition that was launched in Summer 2017. The driving force behind this idea was the ever stronger push towards individuality. Which means modern gentlemen will in future be able to have an individual tattoo actually punched into their favourite Gordon & Bros shoes – be these business shoes, ankle boots or double monks. This gives the Gordon & Bros signature shoe Levet 2506a particularly strong appeal – a classic “Goodyear Welted” full-brogue Oxford which it will be possible to modify like all Gordon & Bros styles from August using the new customising tool featured on the www.gordonbros.de website, which can be used to select from already prepared designs or your very own tattoo motifs. In addition to the special Tattoo edition Gordon & Bros will for the first time be presenting its new, exclusive “Conte” sneakers at GDS.
PIKOLINOS – From Family Firm to Global Player, Hall 4/A24
Since its founding by Juan Péran in 1984 PIKOLINOS has been manufacturing unique shoes. Every season is seen as a new challenge which the company approaches with its very own brand of expertise and years of experience. The focus here always lies on the skilled craftsmanship that characterises PIKOLINOS products. Because it was its skilled craftsmanship that made this traditional Spanish company headquartered in the town of Elche into the internationally renowned company and market leader in the field of comfort fashion it is today – one which is now represented on over 50 markets and experiencing constant growth. Since it began exporting to France for the first time in 1989, some 75% of production now goes abroad. In the last five years PIKOLINOS has seen clear, annual, double-digit growth. This exemplary Spanish firm shares its success: in 2007 founder Juan Péran 2007 called the Fundación Juan Péran-Pikolinos into existence. 2009 also saw the initiation of Pikolinos’ Masai Collection as a charity project.
Easy Aw’s – Simply Ingenious, Hall 4/A42
Many remember them from the 90s: sporty sandals with stretchy straps that easily adapt to every shape of foot. These comfy “featherweights” have now been re-discovered and “transported” into the here and now by the Austrian label Easy Aw’s. Thanks to two-way stretch straps the sandals are flexible in every direction and ideally adapt to just about any shape of foot. The 3-component soles ensure optimum wear properties and the soft cover sole with a reinforcing wedge under the heel ensures a soft tread. The rugged outer sole is made of a more compact, resilient material with a high-grip profile. The total weight – scarcely 200 grams – make Easy Aw’s optimal travel companions, which is why the claim “travel the world” plus a big logo print grace the insole. The forthcoming GDS will see these sandals “spread across the world” for the first time.
Neosens – Perfect without Perfection, Hall 4/F47
Neosens belongs to the Spanish firm Life Concept S.L. and is located in the La Rioja region. Here they believe a shoe is only perfect when it is not perfect, when it is “perfectly imperfect”, as those behind it call it. This individual look is achieved by the use of natural materials and techniques that make the leather age and special hand-dye finishes. The 2017 S/S collection is characterised by minimalistic lines and simple-looking fastening solutions. Heels are flat or come in comfy heights. Classic shapes are not neglected. New superlight soles provide ever more lightness and comfort. The favoured metal colour rose gold creates a classy look with buckles and decorative details. Neutral earth tones and natural green hues are combined with dark brown or red or alongside delicate pastel shades. New designs decorate natural leather with a matt surface in the form of prints. Creating highlights are stylised floral patterns in bright colours as well as baroque floral trims and curved heel shapes.
Wednesday Whiskey – From Whiskey to a Shoe Brand, Hall 4/F31
When Marijn Verschure went to Dublin in 2011 he did not yet know this trip that would lay the foundation for his own company. What started as a mental game with friends in the pub finally ended in 2013 with the founding of Wednesday Whiskey. Since then the Dutch shoe brand has become firmly established and is subject to constant growth. The collections for men and women are uncomplicated and unfussy with changing styles and motifs in each collection. In Spring/Summer 2017 the “Cube” with its special surface structure runs through the entire collection as a leitmotif. Alongside the conventional collections 2015 also saw the arrival of the Wednesday Whiskey X Art project until now featuring about 20 special styles designed by different artists. The shoes are presented in a travelling exhibition at trade shows or partner stores, as they are at GDS where a cooperation with the Dutch artist Pablo Lücker will be in focus.