7 Designer Shoes I Know Will Reach It-Status in 2021

The Luxury List is a monthly column on all things luxury, tapping the foremost experts in the fashion space to explore everything from craftsmanship deep dives to the little-known details to consider when buying fine jewelry.


Other than bags, shoes are one piece that I typically invest in. I believe that a great pair of shoes can really transform a look—yes, even a simple outfit like jeans and a tee—and the designer pairs I’ve purchased have ended up being some of the most prized items in my wardrobe. So, it goes without saying that I always have my eye out for the cool designer shoes that drop each season.

For spring, brands have released the most stunning new shoes from their collections and a few trends are already winning out. Bold colors like electric green and neon pink, next-level "revenge heels”, and directional slides are already front-runners this season—and there are some styles that I guarantee will reach It-status in 2021. Ahead, I’m highlighting the 7 cool designer shoes that already have a cult-like following among fashion insiders and are set to define style in the months ahead.


Prada's cool slingback heels have already stood out as a fashion insider favorite this season and are only destined to get more popular. The low pointed-toe heels are designed in a rainbow of colors, each with a sporty waved sole, broken kitten heel, subtle logo, and rubber finish that make them feel timeless and modern all at once.

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Balenciaga's iconic knife heels—named for their sharp, pointed toes—were reimagined this season. This time around, they're finished with a sporty toggle at the back that adds a cool scrunch effect to the leather. And remember those bold colors I mentioned? You'll definitely find them here.

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Anything The Attico touches is cool, but this season their Devon heels are one of their most in-demand pieces. The high-impact shoe is designed with a sculptural heel and a range of stunning shades, making it the perfect shoe to instantly dress up any look. A favorite among fashion people and celebs like Hailey Bieber and Dua Lipa, it's easy to see why they're sold out nearly everywhere.

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(Image credit: @camillecharriere; Backgrid; @fionazanetti)

Rather than a specific shoe style, it's the Amina Muaddi x AWGE collection that we need to talk about next. A collaboration with A$AP Rocky's creative agency, these heels are inspired by pieces from the rapper's jewelry collection, like the chain straps embellishing the Flacko heels. These are selling out fast, so you'll be lucky if they are still any pairs left in your size.

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(Image credit: @givenchyofficial)

And now, introducing the coolest slide of the season: the Givenchy marshmallow. Named for their thick, cushioned soles, the rubber slides are poised to rise to cult status this spring. I envision celebs styling the futuristic shoe with everything from mini dresses to tube socks.

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(Image credit: @machandmach)

The fashion set can't get enough of Mach & Mach's beautiful heels. Designed in an array of pretty pastels and finished with crystal bows and roses, these revenge heels are the ultimate piece to pair with party fashion pieces once they make their return.

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(Image credit: @camillecharriere@josefinehj)

There's already a mile-long waitlist for the Hermés Calya mules and it's easy to see why. One of the most talked-about shoes when they hit the F/W 21 runways, this is the coolest possible take on the clog trend that fashion people can't get enough of.

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Next, the designer bags I predict will be big this year.

Associate Director, Special Projects

Kristen Nichols is the Associate Director, Special Projects at Who What Wear with over a decade of experience in fashion, editorial, and publishing. She oversees luxury content and wedding features, and covers fashion within the luxury market, runway reporting, shopping features, trends, and interviews with leading industry experts. She also contributes to podcast recordings, social media, and branded content initiatives. Kristen has worked with brands including Prada, Chanel, MyTheresa, and Luisa Via Roma, and rising designers such as Refine and Tove, and her style has been featured in publications including Vogue.com, Vogue France, WWD, and the CFDA. Before Who What Wear, Kristen began her career at Rodarte, where she worked on assistant styling, photo shoots, and runway shows, and at Allure, where she moved into print and digital editorial. She graduated from the University of Southern California, where she studied art history and business, and currently lives in New York.