Archive for August, 2008
Sometimes maybe no words are necessary. Wandering around the West Village yesterday, I came across a small unassuming shoe store. Nestled on a mostly residential (and definitely very high end) corner of the village, it glowed with the subtly expensive air of a fine boutique that knows it doesn’t have to advertise. And it’s a good thing too, because in fact, it doesn’t. There is no obvious sign broadcasting that it is one of the premiere purveyors of fine footwear in the world. No placard detailing just how they’ve made those shoemakers’ elves look bad. After lurking suspiciously around the store for a few minutes, puzzling on this and shooting the photo below, I noticed a tiny gold-stenciled sigh on the door, bearing their name. The moral of the story: if you are Christian Louboutin, less is apparently more.
I admit that the photo might be a tiny bit crooked, but that doesn’t mask the utter lack of signage. Now, I will admit that stores that refuse to put up signs stating their name and purpose irritate me. It gives the whole store a members-only kind of feel. I feel similarly about the ones where you have to be buzzed in if you want to shop. Let’s face it, your average boutique doesn’t have much clout. Come on people, you want more people to buy stuff, not less. Of course, CL doesn’t have this issue as people will buy stuff anyway. And they neatly sidestepped my semi-irrational irritation with their tiny golden sign.
Now that we are on the subject, let discuss a specific pair of Louboutin’s. Here are the celebrity favorite Orlan Double Platform T-Strap in red suede.
I love these. Note the slightly gladiator design that caters to the trend without buckling to it. Note the graceful sweeping lines, the thicker ankle strap, the tiny peep-toe. And I am not alone. Heidi Klum wore these to major events not once, but twice, in black.
On the left, see Frau Seal on her way to the Peabody Awards. Note the almost symphonic pairing of the geometric dress with fabulous geometric shoes. And on the right, she is posing for the Project Runway Season 5 promos. Clearly these shoes are loved. If you too love them enough to spend $885 dollars, pick them up at saks.com.
posted by: shoesense in Celine Shoes, Christian Louboutin Shoes, Cole Haan Shoes, Fall 2008 Shoes, Givenchy Shoes, High heels, Kate Spade Shoes, L'Autre Chose Shoes, Marc Jacobs Shoes, Nine West, Shoe Trends, Tod's Shoes, Tory Burch Shoes, Yves Saint Laurent (YSL) Shoes
One of the must-have items of the season is, apparently, the good ol’ penny loafer. I’m all for that: school season is knocking on your neighborhood’s door, and even if you’re not in or around a school at the moment, you must feel the buzz of books and the studious energy in the air. No? It must be me, ahem; still, you are probably seeing a preview of collegiate fashions by now. And if you indulge one of my pet peeves for just a second: I for one would LOVE to see young women sporting an elegant, well-made penny loafer rather than a flip-flop way into November, as I often see, and which is just….wrong.
Penny loafers were named as such because they could be decorated with a penny (or often, a dime). I didn’t realize there was actually an urban legend behind this:
In 1934 John R. Bass (a bootmaker in Wilton, Maine) started making loafers and called them Weejuns (meant to sound like Norwegian). These had a strap across the upper part of the vamp that was shaped like a pair of lips (said to be John’s wife, Alice Bass, kissing each shoe on its way out the door). The mouth opening soon was used to hold an ornament (such as a penny), and thus penny loafers became a style. Penny loafers often held a dime instead of a penny. (From Wikipedia).
Edited: Correction: Allison in comments points out that it was actually George Henry Bass (and not John R.). Thanks, Allison, for pointing out again why Wikipedia can’t be entirely trusted!
In the days of yore, the penny loafer was a low-heeled shoe through and through, with a strong masculine vibe (it makes sense, since it started off as a men’s shoe). These days the penny loafer, just like the oxford, has gone through a high-fashion transformation, and the New York Times’ T Magazine is eager to present these options to us:
Clockwise from top: Christian Louboutin shoe, $1,050 a pair. Go to christianlouboutin.com. Yves Saint Laurent shoe, $770. Go to ysl.com. Tod’s shoe, $545. Go to tods.com. Nine West shoe, $99. Go to ninewest.com. Cole Haan shoe, $275, and Anna Sheffield for Cole Haan coin, $45. Go to colehaan.com.
This style is a classic that’s been around for decades and is bound to stay in style for a long time; in theory at least, you can’t go wrong wearing a pair of well-made penny loafers. I do admit to having misgivings about the 3+ inch height of the models shown in T Magazine; but again, I also have misgivings about models that look so masculine I have no desire to wear them. Therefore, I have also scoured teh interwebs for more pleasant AND easier on the feet loafer-options and found a few. Behold:
From top to bottom:
Marc by Marc Jacobs patent loafers (available in other colors, too), $264 at Zappos.
Marc by Marc Jacobs high-heeled loafers (2 & 3/4″, also available in other colors), $354 at Zappos.
Kate Spade Lindsay loafer (also available in other colors), $199 at Zappos.
Givenchy gold calf loafer, on sale for $204 at Zappos.
Tory Burch Clayton Loafer (also in red), $275 at Nordstrom.
Celine tasseled low-heeled brogue, $460 at Yoox.
MariaCristina low-heeled loafers, $178 at Yoox.
L’Autre Chose tasseled loafer, $68 at Yoox (only one size left!)
posted by: Shomore in This week in shoes
Myers says sex just doesn’t cut it. Shoes, on the other hand, get her heart racing. – Via CNN
It’s about time. Women No Longer Forced to Wear High Heels in U.K.-Via NYMag
From Phelps’ record 8 gold medals to Torres’ swim at a record age, the Olympics has kept me glued to the television. And while not quite as historic, Usain Bolt broke a world record AND won gold with his left shoelaces undone. Geez, I’m lucky if I can prevent myself from tripping. – Via Fox
And since I can’t get enough of these games, how to win the Olympics – Just Shoe It! – Via 5Min Life Videopedia
If I had any true poetic talent in my soul, I would compose an ode to this breathtaking beauty.
Alas, I must add this to my list of shoes loved, yet destined to be unrequited; $795 at Bergdorf Goodman, such an unplanned shoe crush makes me wish for a world without household budgetary constraints. Sigh.
May I introduce Stella McCartney’s Flower Metallic Pump:
Seriously, I can’t stop drooling.
People Magazine gives us the scoop on these glittery heels Cate Blanchett donned at Australia’s Helpmann Awards: they are “a pair of limited edition Roger Vivier Limelight America platform heels with sequined star detail and Swarovski crystal buckles.” Wait, that’s not the best part: They cost $11,000! Eleven. Thousand. Dollars.
I’m sure they were a gift (really, what self-respecting celebrity would fork that kind of cash for shoes, no matter how fab?). At any rate, it appears Cate also wore them to the premier of her Bob Dylan movie “I’m not here”–so at least she got some mileage out of them!