For most brands, a distinctive, successful line of shoes or bags can be expected to remain popular for only a couple of years before it needs to be moved to the back burner in favor of what the brand hopes will be its Next Big Thing. With designers producing four collections a year, consumers need constant newness, and it’s rare that anything jumps the tracks to become a classic. But maybe Valentino has done it.
It’s hard to declare anything a true “classic” that’s debuted in the relatively recent past, and Valentino’s first Rockstuds graced their first runway five years ago next month, during the brand’s Spring 2011 show in Paris. At the time, I wasn’t into the line at all, but they’ve long since won me over. Ever since then, Valentino has been making the bags and shoes in a seemingly never-ending stream of colors, sizes, shapes and combinations. There is a Rockstud for everyone, and those who buy one bag or pair of shoes seem often to keep going.
The line’s popularity just keeps chugging along, and although Valentino has introduced lots of designs that aren’t reliant on the look in the past few seasons, the Rockstuds show no signs of going away or losing consumer favor. Although we occasionally hear from people who are sick of the studs’ ubiquity, plenty of other consumers continue to vote with their dollars. After all, for every classic, there are contrarians who are ready and willing to tell you they don’t know what all the fuss is about.
I’ve seen this discussion go down everywhere from my Twitter mentions to an episode of Keeping Up With The Kardashians, and I’m betting all of you have some thoughts on whether the Rockstuds have yet managed to transcend their seasonal roots. Personally, I’m not sure enough time has passed to tell definitively, but if I had to pick a side, I’d guess we’ll be seeing Rockstuds and chic arms and feet for a long time to come.