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Footwear News’ Lifetime Achiever Has The Kate Middleton Vote Locked Up

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According to Stuart Weitzman, earning a lifetime achievement award could be considered a nudge toward an exodus from the industry. “Twenty-six years ago they gave me my first award, which was Man of the Year,” recalled the designer who took home the Lifetime Achievement Award at last night’s 26th Annual Footwear News Achievement Awards held at the Museum of Modern Art. “Now I think they’re trying to retire me.” Despite his jests, the 71-year-old designer (above) shows no signs of slowing down. Selling two million pairs of shoes each year, Weitzman continues to outfit well-heeled women across the globe in his signature 50/50 boots and demure heels. He counts Angelina Jolie, Beyoncé (who even sent in a congratulatory video tribute for Weitzman), and Kate Middleton as fans. Most recently, the latter turned up at London’s Olympic Games in his Corkswoon wedge, turning the stacked style into an instant hit. “She didn’t change her shoes for nine days,” he said. “It was a big deal.”


Among the flurry of footwear fanatics on hand were Miranda Kerr, Tali Lennox, and pop star-turned-designer Fergie, who paired a turquoise Pucci dress with her own Holly pumps. “I love a platform because my husband is so much taller than I am,” the singer admitted. “He’s always leaning over to kiss me.” Even presenter Victor Cruz revealed he’s a “heels guy” and prefers his lady friends in Christian Louboutin or Charlotte Olympia. “I know my stuff,” beamed the New York Giants’ wide receiver. Among the winners of the evening, Charlotte Dellal and Tabitha Simmons (left, with Kerr) took home trophies for Designer of the Year and Style Influencer of the Year respectively, while Rebecca Minkoff earned praise for using Instagram photos in her first print ad campaign (which debuted, by the way, in Style.com/Print). “It was another way that we could connect to our customer and make her feel empowered,” explained Minkoff who, hours earlier, uploaded sandal options for the evening and let her 114k followers decide. No stranger to posting sartorial selfies, Man Repeller’s Leandra Medine lamented over the cons of public forum sharing. “Shoe porn instigates the most heated conversations,” the blogger told Style.com. “The reactions are funny. Amid all the ‘OMG, I love your shoes!’ There’s always the ‘Girl, shave your legs! Why aren’t your toes pedicured!’ It can get pretty hostile.”

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