I Love Steve Madden’s Story of Redemption

Steve Madden at his flagship store in New York. Photo Credit: Nathan Bajar for The New York Times

Steve Madden’s is a story of redemption. After being released from a Florida prison and serving two and a half years for securities fraud and stock manipulation in the early 2000s – having illegally traded shares from the initial public offering of Stratton Oakmont, the investment firm run by Jordan Belfort – Madden has devoted his life to his passion and purpose and the business he loves: Shoes. Madden, whose name has been at the center of women’s shoe design, is now making news by moving into men’s design. On August 1st Madden opened a big new store in Times Square, NYC, with nearly a third of its 2,000-square-foot floor space dedicated to his men’s shoes. Retail is not doing very well in Times Square – and Madden took a chance on the space: “I felt that men were getting shortchanged. We were putting all the excitement into women’s.”

And what does Madden see as the future of men’s shoes? “I would like to go into the sneaker business. I think everybody is wearing sneakers all the time. That’s something you’ll see in the future: more sneakers. I went out to a restaurant in Sag Harbor and it was all mostly 20- or 30-somethings. Why I was there, I don’t know. They were all wearing sneakers. They looked great! But it wasn’t for comfort; they just liked the look. It was interesting to see.

I like to hear good news about Steve Madden. It warms my heart to see someone comeback after being knocked down!!

 

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Slip-On and Carry-On into Autumn

Steve Madden Slip-Ons:

Steve Madden Slip-Ons: Ecentric

P1050120P1050113What happens when you can’t wear sandals any more, but you’re not ready for cold-weather shoes and boots? The answer is: go mid-way and find a transition shoe. I discovered the ever-popular slip-on. No fuss, no strings, just slip it on and go. It’s like wearing a closed-toe sandal.

Steve Madden makes a comfortable, stylish and well-priced slip-on shoe in a full range of colors and styles. For me, there was no question: I had to have the leopard-print!

As we enter the period of transition from warm to cooler temps, the slip-on is a perfect solution for your wardrobe. Because really, we aren’t ready to say good bye to the ease of summer, are we??!

My outfit: shoes, Steve Madden; jeans, Paige Boyfriend Skinny; tee, Michael Stars; blazer Banana Republic

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Heavens to Betsey!

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Designer Betsey Johnson, Photo by Scott Gries/Getty Images for IMG

Betsey Johnson is a fashion icon. A designer who never ages. Perhaps it’s because her designs are youth-inspired with a rocker-girl whimsy. Or perhaps it’s because she ends every one of her shows with a cartwheel (something I haven’t been able to do since 7th grade!). But this Peter Pan of fashion is starting over at age 70 and it appears, doing it with vim and vigor. I was surprised to discover that Betsey Johnson’s company had filed for bankruptcy last April, 2012, when I read Tim Murphy’s story on Betsey, entitled Betsey Johnson, Back In the Pink (The Collection – The New York Times).

What is next for Betsey? A new line of more moderately-priced clothing to be introduced to department stores, including Macy’s and Nordstrom (designer Steve Madden is her new parent company), production of a reality TV show with her daughter, Lulu, premiering this spring on the Style Network, and her third fragrance, Betseyfield, to be released this summer.

I have loved Betsey Johnson’s clothes since my mother introduced me to her line in the 1970s. I wish her much success in her second act. Keep on cartwheeling, Betsey!!

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