“This season’s collections had a feeling of optimism and fun,” says British Vogue’s commerce director, Naomi Smart. “With a return to IRL meetings, events, and celebrations, accessories designers have flexed their imaginations to the max and delivered slick, surreal, and poppy investments that will last (and bring joy) for years to come.”
From Y2K-inspired bags to mega-platforms and surrealist heels, let the world’s top buyers inform your next purchase. Scroll on to shop the best accessories available now.
All that glitters
Tiffany Hsu, vice president of womenswear and kidswear fashion buying at Mytheresa.com, sees the sparkle craze as a “symbol for hope.” The retail platform has bet big on embellished bags and shoes this season.
It’s a similar story at Matchesfashion.com. Head of womenswear Cassie Smart believes that embellished accessories offer customers a “sense of joy and escapism”—feelings that we yearned for during the pandemic. At Browns, the steady return to parties has prompted a desire for “full-throttle glamour,” reports head of womenswear buying Heather Gramston.
The fashion pack is coveting Mach & Mach’s bejeweled footwear. “The eye-catching crystals and playful silhouettes are a favorite with our customers,” reveals Rickie de Sole, women’s fashion and editorial director at Nordstrom. “With the return of dressing up, we’re ditching our sneakers and grabbing our party shoes.”
At Threads Styling, “crystal everything is flying,” according to editor-in-chief Rachel Ingram. Prada’s crystallized belt bag and Benedetta Bruzziches’s glittery bags are some of the most sought-after pieces.
Mach & Mach double bow crystal, PVC and leather sandals
Balenciaga hourglass crystal-embellished cross-body bag
Make it pop
Of all the accessories that graced the spring/summer 2022 runways, Jonathan Anderson’s surrealist shoes at Loewe stole the show. Libby Page, senior market editor at Net-a-porter.com, says that the designer’s artsy footwear—which came with cracked eggs, nail varnishes, and wilting roses as heels—will become “pieces of fashion history.” Snap up the limited stock still available at Matchesfashion.com and Net-a-porter.com. “It’s all about being the destination for the cult items that almost act as fashion memorabilia,” explains Page of the latter’s strategy.
Loewe embellished leather mules
Alaïa Cœur Small leather shoulder bag
Ingram notes that shoppers are veering away from “traditional” investments and towards bolder buys. “We’ve seen an uptick in investment pieces from handbags to footwear, particularly in brightly colored adventurous choices,” says De Sole.
Over at Net-a-porter.com, the team dedicated its Go For Bold spring/summer 2022 campaign to “striking silhouettes and vibrant accessories,” shares Page, highlighting Bottega Veneta’s racer-green intrecciato Jodie bag as a bestseller.
Balenciaga Cagole embellished textured-leather knee boots
Alaïa Le Demi-Lune small leather shoulder bag
Keep it classic
Among the weird and wonderful accessories that emerged at the shows, there were an array of classic bag shapes to get excited about. Prada’s Re-Edition 1995 tote bag—a modern update of a ’90s-era style, available in glossy black or postbox-red—is one such piece. “Customers are seeking longevity, and are investing in classic, timeless pieces,” says Gramston, who’s noticed growing demand for investment products at Browns.
Savette The Symmetry Pouchette handbag
Jil Sander small leather shoulder bag
“The sky-high platform was a spring standout,” notes De Sole. The best stompers include Valentino Garavani’s Tan-Gos, Saint Laurent’s Paloma Picasso-inspired patent Kika heels, Amina Muaddi’s silky towering Yigit shoes, and Versace’s strappy wedges. (Ingram reveals that Team Threads is “obsessed” with the latter.)
Proof that platforms are here to stay? Net-a-porter.com has bought into over 50 platform styles across 18 brands, including celebrity-approved D’Accori. “We saw the return of head-turning platforms, bringing a whole new level of drama,” says Page.
D’Accori Belle metallic glossed-leather platform sandals
Saint Laurent Kika platform sandals