Sunday, June 21, 2009


The Men's Wall of Fame

Tatoo Collection


FFANY June 10th 2009
Fifth Avenue, NYC

Words, Images Judith Ecochard

We were beyond excited to preview the massive Frye collection of peds and accessories during the recent FFANY tradeshow…a bi-annual gathering of exhibitors from around the world who descend on midtown Manhattan’s Hilton Hotel…or serve up their Big Apple showrooms to entice retail buyers…and thereby their customers…with apparel for the feet.

Ahhhh… no wonder women love shoes…and devote sizeable portions of precious living space to house them all ...and ovens as storage too.


Lucky us, we got the first class tour with Michael Petry, the creative eye and very congenial guru of Frye boots and shoes. Naturally, he was one happy camper when we met up with him in the late afternoon…the feedback from the retailers was phenomenal.
Here’s why…


Neutral tones (natural, smoke, taupe, black, dark brown) continue to rule sales but for Spring 2010, saturated rainbow colors are being introduced. For women the super comfortable (squishy soft buffalo leather) Carson Pull Up and Shortie boots come in poppin’ turquoise and green shades for example.

“Grommets are hot,” according to Petry. Our fav studded up versions included the stacked heel Maya Vintage Stud Slingback and a slingback clog in Dusty Rose.

“And it’s very important to get a mix of flats,”- including the popular Drivers (Reagan Campus and Deco Stitch), the Mocs with outsole stitching (Reba Honeycomb) and Ballets (Emma Leather Lace),

Striking contrast stitching-“Deco Stitch” is a signature detail of Frye’s. The versatile, multi-strapped Grace Sling comes in assorted shades---and will work with our jeans, leggings, and hosiery when we wear our dress-up frocks.

Similarly, a lace up Hazel Leather Pump has a casual, yet urban friendly snazzy style to it.

Equestrian embellishments like braided details, and harnesses (a studded Heath and the Melissa collection)--- are classics.

And in the vintage vein are boho sandals and the platform Corinna Campus Wedge--- that still finds favor with those of us who wore that style decades ago with our oversized elephant leg blue jeans.

On Our Wish List:

What we’re calling the TATOO boot collection blew us away and brought out our inner grrrrl!

In development for eight years (!!!), the laser stitched, white washed finish “plays up the tattoo,” Petry told us. A great combo of “soft” (leather) and the “aggressive” (hip designs by noted-tough to make an appointment with---- tattoo artist MASTER Scott Campbell) ---“it took awhile to figure out the leather.”

We only previewed the women’s styles…because the men’s versions were “stuck in customs.”

We also think Frye will have great success with the over the knee boots…a big trend for Fall 2009 and Spring 2010.


The cut out heels---for gals “living in Brooklyn.” Cool.


Workmen style lace up field boots in full grain leather, tumbled/smooth full grain,

and a Greene Tall Lace in washed canvas/tumbled full grain leather...

... flexible crepe outsoles and and Chukka styles are perennial best sellers.

Oxfords, Frye’s ways ---are handsome, masculine alternatives for professional dudes.

And what makes the men’s selections so special are the obvious to the eye, hand-finished details and eye catching exposed window soles.

We were very impressed with the flexibility/softness of the boat shoes and slip-ons with bold contrast stitching..

And lifestyle sneakers (remind us of old school tennis shoes) are also “doing great.”


Truth be told, we wanted it all.

In the Campus Group…a Crossbody knapsack style, Hobo and Stud Tote in soft crunch leather are the perfect everyday bags.

The carryalls for men are roomy enough for weekend jaunts and structured enough for office warriors.

For Spring 2010, most kickers will hit retail outlets in November 2009-January 2010, with gals’ MSRPs from $138 topping out at $398 for boots. Women’s bags range from $298-$498 (real values considering the quality)…
Guys will shell out from $128-$288 for those fierce Billy Tatoo boots.

Founded in 1863 by Massachusetts resident, the English native shoemaker John A. Frye. The oldest continuously operating shoe company in America (YEAH) has shod adventuresome pioneers, cowboys, American servicemen…and cool Hollywood types for decades.

Owned outright (since 1998) by Jimlar Corporation, helmed by brothers Jim and Larry Tarica, with a design studio and a STUNNING NYC showroom smack dab on Fifth Avenue. We wanted to move in.

We Support:
Frye’s partnership with Project A.L.S. in “A STEP TOWARDS A CURE”…via 20% donation of proceeds from the limited edition Jenifer Estess Collection” of boots.

Every style we saw…are keepers! Love the embossed logo.