11 Years Ago

I started this blog 11 years ago. 
Mainly to talk fashion and shoe design influences without boring the people around me.  I don’t post here nearly enough due to work and time… 
but I’m still thinking about shoes, evenwhen I should be doing other things. 
If you follow me on Instagram or Twitter and want to chat shoes, I’d love that!

Lock Down Your Fabric – Blahnik, Rousseau, Jcrew and Anthropologie

I haven’t written on this blog in ages but I had to make this post because I was so appalled and amused by this fabric situation.

Designers! This is why you lock down exclusivity for your materials!

To start with – these are all current season and currently available for purchase shoes.

First up are the Manolo Blahnik BB’s in this great embroidered floral fabric. $765 at Saks.

But I also found these JCrew Ankle-wrap slingback heels in the same fabric. $228

And then I found two shoes from Jerome Rousseau – Abelline Sandals for $595 and Booties in a black version of the floral for $895.

I also found the black version in an offering from Anthropologie – the Ouigal Pearl Block heels $228

Obviously, it’s a popular fabric, but seeing it all over really dilutes the special-ness of it. It makes you remember the fact that these are produced versus crafted.  And that’s not usually what I want in a shoe.

Making More with Miu Miu – Miu Miu Fall 2015 RTW Buckle Pumps

I have long been a fan of Miu Miu, especially the shoes that get sent down the runway each season, probably to my detriment.

But Miuccia is such an amazing designer and her eye for detail and continuity is so strong and really just amazing, that it’s difficult for me to pass up.

The Fall 2015 RTW Collection was no exception.

This may be my favorite quote about a runway show in recent memory –
“As is often the case in Pradaland, there is always a drop of poison with the sugar-candy consumer desirability of this clothing—and that is what makes it all the more addictive, of course.”

Hmmm… maybe that’s my new aesthetic guiding principle right there. 

But the designs took the mid-century look and exploded it out with color and excess…

…and Glitter!!!!

Miu Miu does the best glitter. I’m kicking myself that I didn’t get one of these two pairs.

 But I did end up with a piece that brings the excess of the runway down into a beautiful pump that I can’t stop wearing and the embraces the pink that is very of the moment.

The buckles on the runway were large and colorful and paired with fuzzy heels (which I actually do like but didn’t fee quite me).

This pair, which I’m adoring more each day, are simpler.

I’m wearing them with Erin Fetherston dresses and JCrew striped Tippi sweaters paired with cropped jeans. They’ve been summer but they’re going to stay on through Fall again and into Spring.

I can’t wait.

Doing Denim DIYs – Crop Step and Crop Fray

I’ve never been a big fan of pants in general or jeans specifically. I always found them uncomfortable and would wear denim skirts (still do) to get my denim fix.

That’s kind of funny because I live in, essentially, the home of denim, where a 100 year old partnership still lives on to produce American denim and some of the best selvedge around.

But lately I’ve been embracing pants more – patterned especially – and finding I also really love the denim jean/heel contrast.  But while I like wearing it more, I absolutely am not into spending a lot for it.  Maybe it’s my long-standing anathema or just the fact that I’m not tall and lanky, but I just can’t bring myself to spend a lot, even if I like it.

Sure maybe there are some magical technologies built into the fabric weave or the structure of the cut, but I probably won’t ever find out. My range generally runs from JCrew at the top end to mostly Old Navy.  Maybe I’ll be won over some day by some vintage Japanese selvedge but I can’t really ever picture me buying $1000+ jeans.

However, I was nearly won over to the $200 camp by a pair of Mother Denim Crop Step Fray Jeans, especially when paired so perfectly by Emma Roberts.

I really like this look. Lots of ankle. A classy heel. It’s polished and casual and the lack of a full hem keeps it from looking too “done”

But then I thought, I can do that!  I mean, sure the main jeans need to be good too but I’ve been recently wearing a pair of straight legged jeans that I’d cropped and frayed myself, why not give this a shot too.

So, I took advantage of the Old Navy Labor Day sale to stock up on a bunch of jeans I needed – from a pair for wearing outside with the animals, to new grey and mid-wash blue skinnies, to the pair to give the crop step fray action.

And I’m happy with the results, especially for $20 (50% off sale!)

I’ll have to get a better shot but I like how the cropped but still longer back really frames up the shoes in the front.

And at the end of the day, it really is all about showing off the shoes!

Vintage All Over Again

It always cracks me up when I see a very vintage design crop in in a modern story or store.  Not even an “inspired by” design but one totally reproduced from a vintage piece they must have gotten a hold of.

For example, I was browsing a Who What Wear article on “9 Style Secrets That Bloggers Know (and You Don’t)” and saw this purse featured from Gaia.

Oh wait!

 I know that purse… because I have it!

And mine was not $98. It was like $20 and is an actual vintage piece bought from an vintage accessories dealer at a show in 2011.

Maybe I’m a blogger in the know.

At least I know to buy the original vintage piece for a much better price and quality than a reproduction!

Banana Republic is Stealing Shoe Designs

I know its been ages since I’ve posted but I had to come out of my semi-closed writing state to comment on what I think is pretty blatant shoe design theft going on over at Banana Republic.

Sure they are knocking off Stuart Weitzman’s Nudist sandals like most other mid-tier brands but they are really not being subtle about these items. The top item in each pair is a current/recent Banana Republic shoe and the bottoms is the pretty obvious “inspiration” –

BR Honey vs Aquazzura Wild Things –

 BR Jasmine vs Alexandre Birman Lolita

BR Jackie vs Prada 2008
To me this is the worst one – BR Cadi vs Carven’s bow slingbacks

Knocking off is not cool. You can have a unique shoe at any price point. You won’t have any cute shoes if we keep supporting intellectual property theft.

It. Not. Cool.

You Can’t Dress Trashy Until You Spend A Lot Of Money – Golden Goose Trainers

Oh fashion! You are so silly.

There is many a time I shake my head at what designers put out for people to buy but these Golden Goose distressed jersey trainers/sneakers really take the cake.

Some things look better when they’re “lived in”, but $350 for ripped cotton sneakers is a bit much, dontcha think?

Perhaps I’m hopelessly out of touch fashion-wise (I mean, I don’t get the Kanye stuff at all) but I wouldn’t wear these in my yard.

Future Acquisitions for Curated Collections – Christopher Kane Irregular Stitching Boot

It’s not often that a shoe stops me flat.
Sure there are those that catch my eye. That stand out. That make me say “Gimme!”

But this Christopher Kane boot is different.

And that’s precisely what stopped me.

It’s edgy not elegant. It’s a bit wacky. A bit weird. A lot not my style.

But it is innovative. And unique. And special.

It’s a shoe that make me want to have it in the collection. Not just to wear but to curate. It feels like a design acquisition even more than an awesome shoe to wear. 

I’m not sure if I’ll get them But I feel like I kind of need them. They’re one of those interesting shoes you’ll seen in fashion design books where they give historical context and retrospectives.

They touchstone in the evolution of shoes… and I want them.

Pulling from the archives – Miu Miu Spring 2016

I was flipping through the Spring 2016 issue of Barney’s The Window last night and chuckled when I saw the following feature of Miu Miu wedge sandals…

Why did I laugh?

Because I know that fabric.   It’s from one of my favorite Miu Miu collections – Spring 2010.

I loved so many pieces from this collection, but especially my cat printed mary janes that I wear all the time…

I mean, hell, it’s my site banner image!

But I recognized the prints used immediately.  Here they are in the original show from six years ago.

 Amazing.  But in a good way?  I’m not sure.

I love the threads of theme that carry through over the seasons for Miu Miu and Prada but I do find it surprising this reuse of fairly iconic patterns.  Six years isn’t that long ago.  And frankly, the new shoe design has none of the girlish whimsy that paired so well with the fabric patterns.

I loved these designs but seeing them again now, well, this seems like a rehash.