|Banana Republic Kieley, $128
Ready to start 2013 off on the right foot? However you ring in the new year, do it in a killer pair of shoes. They’re the perfect way to add an attention-grabbing touch, or to set the tone for the rest of your party look. (Basic jeans-and-blouse ensemble, get ready for a new pair of heels!) But even if you're looking to make a splash on New Year's, it's wise to think about what will liven up your closet year-round.
"It's a short season," says Lyne Hebert, design director at Reitmans, of the holiday season. "I think it's important that you choose what you want to buy that will have a longer life, and that will update your outfits without buying a brand new outfit all together." When in doubt, go for updated classics she says.
"Invest in a beautiful pair of heels with special ladylike details," suggests Heather Hopkins, spokesperson for Gap Inc. Newer neutrals like nude and oxblood are re-wearable without being stuffy, and details like bows and T-straps add a flirty touch but won't date quickly, clash with the rest of your wardrobe, or compete with your outfit for attention. "They're classic styles that transition into new wardrobes beautifully," Hopkins says.
If you're looking for a further twist, play into the season's texture trend with materials like shiny patent, soft suede or luxe pony hair. Retro-inspired block heels are rising in popularity alongside standard stilettos - a good thing if you're less stable in heels, or if you'll be doing a lot of walking, standing or dancing on the big night. (J. Crew even bills its Etta heels as "the heels for girls who wear flats" - and to boot, they're available in a range of trendy finishes like
sequins, tweed, patent and calf hair.) Patricia Amato, a rep for Ted Baker, says a pair of sexy ankle boots will make a statement even after the season's over and the closed shape is also practical solution for winter glamour.
If you're looking to go beyond the basic ankle boot, check out Ted Baker's Sinerx booties, which are a little reminiscent of the surreal "armadillo" platform shoe by British designer Alexander McQueen.
"The banana-shaped heel will make any lady feel like a bombshell throughout the year," Amato says. Glitter and gold are always right on trend for the holidays; recently, the craze for menswear-inspired shoes like oxfords, loafers and smoking slippers has received a little bit of that Midas touch. Gilded flats are a quirkier choice that may not, at first glance, seem as dressed-up as a heel, but paired with a similarly slim look like a tuxedo jacket and skinny or cropped pants, you'll be ready to dance the night away. Cole Haan has taken that desire to catch the light a step further. In addition to glam, gleaming metallics and sequin finishes, they've released pumps and oxfords that are coated in a reflective material -- not unlike the stuff on safety vests -- for those who really want to turn heads on the dance floor. Whatever you slip into this New Year's Eve, one thing's for sure: The bubbly and mirrorballs won't be the only ones sparkling.