Who started it? Italian designer René Caovilla started creating beautiful, bejewelled footwear in his teens, working for the family business in Venice. After studying design in Paris and London in the 1950s, Caovilla returned to Venice, where his aesthetic interests shifted towards embroidery and luxurious detailing. As his designs gained traction within the couture world, industry giants Christian Dior and Karl Lagerfeld jumped on the Caovilla bandwagon. These days, his shoes adorn the likes of Heidi Klum, Tyra Banks and Jennifer Aniston, and the business remains a family-run affair, with his son and grandson at the helm. Why we love it: intricately embellished sandals and stilettos, Caovilla channels opulence and refinery with Italian panache. Pearls, precious stones, lace and velour are standard features of a Caovilla shoe – exquisite, eye-catching and perfect for evening wear. What we’d pick: for summer evenings, we love the Atena Swarovski crystal-embellished sandal (below right; HK$8,480), with a colourful array of crystals and gold embroidery. For a simpler, but no less extravagant look, there’s the black leather sandal with pearls (above; HK$5,330) or the nude crystal-embellished thong in satin (below left; HK$7,230). Where can you get it? René Caovilla is available at net-a-porter.com and Lane Crawford.