NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – The over “arching” trend in women’s shoes these days may surprise you. It looks like the ladies are moving away from fashion over comfort.

You see so many different shoe silhouettes strolling the streets of New York City, but the women CBS2’s Vanessa Murdoch spoke to say the “sole” reason for sporting their kicks is how they feel wearing them.  Comfort, they say, is key.

“Women have always wanted to be comfortable, now the fashion industry has caught up with that.” Erica Russo, Fashion Director at Bloomingdale’s says.  So, it’s no surprise then, that Bloomingdale’s new shoe floor shines the spotlight on mules and slides. And Russo says the options have never been greater with designers serving up styles from prints to satin, silk, leather and embellishments.

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Russo tells CBS2 it’s even acceptable to wear these comfortable styles to a wedding or black-tie affair, “”look at all this embellishment and color it’s a statement piece to update and uplift your outfit,” she emphasizes, “when you elevate it with crystals and sparkles and maybe a beautiful satin that matches what you’re wearing. I think it’s more than acceptable, it’s actually very chic.”

Russo says sneakers are a major force in fashion too, whether for performance or appearance.  Russo claim the reason for that starts at the top.  “Part of the rise of sneakers being so acceptable to, is that the runways have been showing them.”

Beth Goldstein is an industry analyst at the NPD Group.  She regularly tracks what consumers are buying. She tells us while sneaker sales have soared by 37%, women’s heel sales are down by 11%, “high heels three inches plus are really declining, but lower heels are not bad,’ Goldstein explains. In fact, she adds, low and mid-heel sales have increased by 3%,

“Having a block heel is very comfortable, you can wear it all day long,” Erica Russo weighs in. “it gives you height you want, but also the comfort.”

The kitten heel another “purrfect” pick to pamper your dogs. “The beauty of fashion right now is that it’s very individual and there’s really something for everyone,” Russo elaborates.

Bloomingdales tells CBS2, there stores have NOT noted a drop in their heel sales


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