MORE IS MORE: British Prime Minister Theresa May continues to draw attention in the British media for her fashion choices, ranging from her Amanda Wakeley leather trousers — which drew bitter criticism from former education secretary Nicky Morgan — to her love of over-the-top shoes. The politician’s style choices have been closely documented in the press since her appointment.
Beverly Feldman, the American accessories designer based in Alicante, Spain, is just one designer who’s been benefiting from increased media attention after May was snapped in some of her signature styles. May wears the label’s Caliente pumps, a pointed-toe, kitten heel style with crystal embellishments and contrasting panels in bold patterns, such as leopard print, fuchsia pony skin and metallic snake-effect leather.
Feldman said having a woman like May seen in her shoes has much more impact than celebrity endorsements.
“It’s true validity for the brand that a real woman in a powerful position believes in you — as opposed to a Hollywood celebrity whose choices are dependent on what their stylists have selected for them on an evening out,” said Feldman, adding that she admires May’s playful taste when it comes to accessories.
“She is already an icon for women because she became the prime minister of her country. That is the most admirable part of her. The fact that she also loves shoes makes her real. She expresses herself perfectly with her accessories; she still dresses in a very classic manner and leaves all the excitement for the accessories. I think she has a lot of fun with the hysteria about her shoe addiction, or rather the press’ addiction [with her shoes] and, regardless, continues to choose unusual pieces.”
Since May was seen wearing the Caliente shoes, Feldman has updated the style using different color combinations, including tartan and zebra print panels. They are now featured in a dedicated section on the web site called Theresa.
Feldman doesn’t tend to introduce new seasonal collections, and instead focuses on updating key styles using different materials and color combinations.
“In the 50 years that I have been designing I don’t think I’ve had to design anything new. It’s just fun to add new color combinations. The original Caliente style is 10 or 12 years old,” she said.
Other key styles in the brand’s range include ballerina flats embellished with chunky crystals; espadrilles covered in sequins, and metallic slip-on sneakers with floral appliqués. Feldman isn’t one to shy away from sparkly details, her brand’s tagline being “too much is not enough.”
“It’s a personal aesthetic that has nothing to do with fashion. I make happy shoes, and some of the best midheels and comfortable flats. It’s a belief system in what I think women would want to wear to feel attractive and comfortable,” added the designer.
Prices range from $199 to $550.
Feldman also said that she has stopped selling at wholesale, and is focused on selling directly to her customer through her website and social media. Her latest venture is a YouTube channel where she shares everything from fashion to cooking tips and even footage during a trip to the cosmetic surgeon.
“I no longer wholesale. I find selling directly to the clients on my web site and social media [is] where it’s at today. It’s more rewarding for both myself and the clients.”