Gray Booties

In the circus of our fall footwear coverage, a couple of key styles have been major crowd-pleasers thus far: over-the-knee boots and heavy hardware booties. While these options continue to captivate audiences and show up on fashionable feet galore, we're happy to report on a newcomer to the big top-the gray lace-up bootie! Unlike our aforementioned autumnal offerings, this ankle-grazing necessity isn't bold or brash, but its subtlety makes it a stellar alternative and a wardrobe necessity. Whether you take a tip from Claudia Schiffer and wear them with a cozy sweater dress or prefer them paired with a party frock, per Olivia Palermo, we have a feeling gray booties might end up being your favorite act!

But enough with our master of ceremonies nonsense, it's time to put down our make-believe top hat and move on to the shoes! Today's trend first piqued our interest during New York Fashion Week, when we noticed a number of these suede lace-ups on the shows' attendees. After returning to LA, we kept seeing these shoes on street-style blogs and in paparazzi pictures, confirming that they have universal appeal. In fact, everyone from the fantastic Rachel McAdams to fashionable real girls are reaching for them on a regular basis! Speaking of the former, McAdams offered an early example when she wore a high-heeled pair of Christian Louboutin's Mamanouk Platform Booties ($1040) to Alexander Wang's S/S 10 show. She mixed them with a black-and-white bandage skirt from Boy by Band of Outsiders' S/S 10 collection and a boxy peacoat resulting in the sort of effortless ensemble we love to see.

A few weeks later the shoes were still holding strong, as two fashion fanatics-The City's Olivia Palermo and Vogue's Lauren Santo Domingo-attended a Dior Beauty party at the Standard Hotel in New York wearing our accessory du jour. As you might remember from our fash week coverage, LSD was an early adopter of the gray bootie and continues to sport her Proenza Schouler Suede Lace-Up Boots ($795) all over town. While this contributing editor styled her booties with a delicate dress, we also adore Palermo's outfit. The combination of textures and finishes-a Topshop Stud Leather Jacket ($320), Ports 1961 metallic dress, and vintage Gucci croc clutch-is masterful and very modern, especially when worn with Topshop's Amber Crepe Sole Platform Boots ($170), which are available in navy or light gray!

But lest you think that gray booties are a singularly Stateside trend, we ask that you turn your attention to one of London's loveliest residents: Claudia Schiffer. In early October, the supermodel attended the launch of a new weekly magazine, Stylist, wearing a Luella Abbot Cashmere Dress ($875) and black opaques with the most divine pair of Surface to Air Wedge Buckle Boots ($440). We have an enormous crush on these suede wedges, which offer the perfect blend of form and function. It might not be the greatest show on earth, but it's definitely a contender for greatest shoe!

Photo of Claudia Schiffer, from Getty Images.