In the world of luxury fashion, designer shoes are more than just footwear; they are wearable art, coveted by fashion lovers and celebrities alike. From red carpet events to everyday street style, designer shoes have become a symbol of luxury, elegance and success. However, not all designer shoes are made equal. And that’s exactly where this list of the best designer shoe brands comes in.
Obviously, you don’t want to spend your hard-earned money on a pair that is going to break after a few wears. But is there really a way to avoid this? Well, if you ask me, there is. Of course, there is still a chance that your shoes are going to break, but I would say it’s way less likely to happen if you buy them from a brand that actually specializes in shoes. Yep, it’s that clear and simple.
From Christian Louboutin to René Caovilla, every brand featured on this list has left an indelible mark on the world of designer footwear. Whether it was by inventing a particular shoe style, or by consistently producing footwear of impeccable quality and design, these designer shoe brands have cemented their spots as icons. Keep scrolling to see the full list.
1. Christian Louboutin
An iconic name in the world of luxury footwear – Christian Louboutin opens the list of the best designer shoe brands. Founded in 1991 by the French footwear designer, Christian Louboutin, the brand is best known for its iconic red soles which have adorned its shoes from the very beginning. From the classic Pigalle pump to the edgy Pyraclou wedges, Louboutin’s shoes are instantly recognizable, adding a touch of luxury to any look.
2. Manolo Blahnik
Manolo Blahnik, the Spanish fashion designer, has been a legend in the shoe industry for decades. Known for his elegant, feminine designs, Blahnik’s creations have graced the feet of royalty and Hollywood stars alike. His delicate craftsmanship and attention to detail have produced timeless classics like the Hangisi pump, immortalized by Carrie Bradshaw in “Sex and the City.” Another beloved Manolo design is the “BB” pump, known for its timeless silhouette and diverse range of colors and materials.
3. Salvatore Ferragamo
For nearly a century, Salvatore Ferragamo has been synonymous with Italian craftsmanship and creativity. Founded by the legendary shoemaker Salvatore Ferragamo in 1927, the brand has consistently delivered shoes that are both comfortable and high-fashion. A great example are the brand’s classic “Varina” flats. Featuring a signature grosgrain bow and a low block heel, these flats have adorned the feet of fashion icons for decades.
4. Jimmy Choo
Founded by Malaysian fashion designer Jimmy Choo and British Vogue’s former accessories editor, Tamara Mellon, in 1996, Jimmy Choo has rapidly become one of the most recognized designer shoe brands globally. The brand’s creations, known for their sleek, modern design and high-quality craftsmanship, have graced the feet of some of the World’s biggest stars incl. Olivia Wilde and Sandra Bullock. Needless to mention that Jimmy Choo’s iconic Anouk pumps are a red carpet staple.
Aquazzura, a relatively new player in the designer shoe scene, has quickly risen to fame thanks to its unique blend of Italian craftsmanship and contemporary flair. Founded by Colombian designer Edgardo Osorio in 2011, the brand is known for its bold colors, playful details, and good fit. A good example are the brand’s iconic Gatsby slingback pumps that combine a sophisticated pointed toe with intricate crystal embellishments.
6. Stuart Weitzman
Ask any fashionista about Stuart Weitzman and she will likely say she owns at least one pair from the brand. Yes, that’s right, I am talking about Stuart Weitzman’s iconic over-the-knee boots. However, the brand is way more than just boots. In fact, Stuart Weitzman has been creating high-quality designer footwear since the 50s and has a pretty extensive shoe range starting all the way from sandals. And on the topic of those – brand’s Nudist sandals have long been a favorite among designer shoe lovers for their barely-there strappy design.
7. Gianvito Rossi
Gianvito Rossi, the son of the legendary Italian shoemaker Sergio Rossi, established his own namesake brand in 2007, which has quickly become one of the most beloved brands in the industry. Known for its impeccable craftsmanship, Gianvito Rossi’s shoes are characterized by clean lines, refined silhouettes, and a focus on timeless elegance. The Portofino sandal and the Plexi pump, featuring transparent panels, in particular, have garnered a dedicated following among those looking for understated luxury.
Founded as a cobbler’s workshop in 1900, Tod’s is yet another icon in the World of Italian shoe design. With numerous iconic designs under its belt, incl. Gommino driving loafers, as well as the classic Penny loafers, Tod’s creations seamlessly blend comfort and sophistication, which makes them a staple in the wardrobes of those who value practicality. Not even to mention that the quality of Tod’s shoes is unmatched, with a single shoe allegedly taking over 100 steps to produce from start to finish.
9. Roger Vivier
Paris-born Roger Vivier has been a fashion legend since the early 1930s, playing an important role in the wardrobes of some of the World’s best dressed women, incl. Brigitte Bardot and Queen Elizabeth Ⅱ. The designer is also credited with the creation of the Aiguille, or the stiletto heel in 1954, which is arguably one of the greatest inventions in the World of women’s footwear. Today, Roger Vivier brand’s designs include pumps, ballerinas, trainers, boots and sandals, each one adorned with Maison’s iconic buckle detail.
10. René Caovilla
Wrapping up the list of the best designer shoe brands with fabulous René Caovilla. The Italian shoe brand, established in the 1930s, is celebrated for its handcrafted embellishments and intricate detailing. René Caovilla’s shoes are often adorned with Swarovski crystals, pearls, and lace, making them the ultimate choice for red carpet events and special occasions. And if you’re not sure which pair to invest in, check out the brand’s Cleo sandals. Featuring the hallmark snake that elegantly coils around the leg, this is the shoe you can’t go wrong with.