I have mentioned before how cool I think the Christian Louboutin site is. Oh yea, and the shoes are ok too I suppose, heh. Seriously though, Louboutin is to our era what Manolo Blahnik was to the late ’90s/early ’00s; a man capable of creating shoes that EVERYBODY wants [poor Manolo, now that I think of it. He must be raging he’s not top dog anymore]. I guess it’s a combination of good design – both aesthetic and ergonomic, as rumour has it Louboutins are comfy despite perilously towering – and managing to capture the zeitgeist and strap it to women’s feet. I am not sure what the zeitgeist is telling us with our huge chunky platforms and gravity defying heels *, but Mr Louboutin gets it, sticks a red sole on it and we all go gaga for it.
Zeitgeist, apart from being a weird word, is a weird thing. It changes imperceptibly, but sometimes so quickly that while you don’t notice, you just KNOW something is over or fresh. Which is why I love fashion/coffee table books. They document a moment, which may then age, or remain classic and timeless. I don’t need to tell anyone today about the importance and influence of reference material from the past, as our modern world is saturated with nostalgia and vintage everything. But I think I might mention that the Louboutin team have created a new volume chronicling the past two decades of work. I for one can’t wait to get my grubby mitts on it and have a good aul gander. Any book spanning that length of time is always worth a look, to see how a brand remains true to its identity while changing with the times. And in an industry where the slightest change of heel height or toe shape can make the difference between beautiful, relevant shoes or ugly rotten things, that is no mean
Published by Rizzoli, available in bookstores (do we still have those????) now!
*Speculative answers include – we like broken ankles, secretly we all want to be NBA players, we think having truly enormous shoes will make the rest of us look skinnier….