Finishing up our little shoe roundup are these sweet Keds (never thought I’d say that) which are metallic and awesome. First off they’re all leather, so they should get better with age. They’re a beautiful color, almost a metallic grey, not too light and not too dark, and the details and stitching are just enough to give it some character. They remind me a lot of something Generic Man might produce if they went a little crazy with adding panels, which in all honesty is a compliment. I’m just upset I can’t find these anywhere!
As you may have noticed we’ve been posting up shoes today on the site, so hopefully you’ve been enjoying them so far. Alex and Danica both posted a couple of items for ladies so I’m posting a couple of pairs for dudes. Honestly I’ve been wearing Sperry’s non-stop lately but I have this constant crush on Dunk-y looking shoes, even if I never wear them.
From what Freshness Mag says these are some kinda’ fancy, limited edition shoe which come in an amazing medium, metallic silver dot pattern which looks woven into the material, not printed on. Usually when a shoe company makes a polka dot print they tend to make it smaller, cuz’, big polka dots are pretty gross. But I think the muted color palette of the shoe make this one a serious winner. No idea where to get it, so good luck finding it!
In Genevieve Antoine Dariaux’s indispensable tome to style, A Guide to Elegance: For Every Woman Who Wants to Be Well and Properly Dressed on all Occasions, she sets out extremely strict rules regarding footwear. Please allow me to summarise:
- heels higher than 2 or 2 1/2 inches are “extremely vulgar” and high heels worn with trousers “can reduce to vulgarity the most refined appearance”;
- open-toed shoes are an absolute no-no, as some brute will undoubtedly step on your toes and if it rains your feet will be soaked (how terribly distasteful);
- wedge heels are generally in “bad taste” and will result in an “awkward gait and a heavy leg”;
- ankle straps are “unflattering and rather cheap looking”;
- shoes that have “exaggeratedly pointed toes” and adornments “that attract too much attention” should be avoided;
- ballerinas (the style of shoe, not the dancers) must “never be seen on a city street…for they create an impression of negligence”; and
- bright coloured shoes should only be “worn in the evening under electric lights.”
Perusing Dariaux’s tips I was struck by two things: the use of the word “vulgar” (as far as I can ascertain “vulgar” has dropped out of contemporary parlance and has been replaced by inferior sentiments – personally, I feel it should be wholeheartedly resurrected) and the large discrepancy between ideas of elegance enshrined in the 1960s and those held today.
Looking at the styles that are currently being produced by high-end designers, I can’t help but think that poor Genevieve will be turning in her grave. In a season where 1970s-inspired cork and wood wedges have made a comeback, tall and spindly heels are de rigueur, Marc Jacobs continues to design shoes that look like cute animals, colour palettes are out of control and masculine brogues are all the fashion, archaic concepts of elegance have been well and truly thrown out the window. Indeed, I happen to think that ankle straps can be very sophisticated (provided that the wearer does not have cankles) and brightly coloured shoes are always appropriate (except at funerals).
So are poise, style and grace mutable ideas that change from season to season or are they fixed concepts? What gets placed in the trash: Dariaux’s book or my ballerina flats with *shudder* ankle straps? Whatever your opinion, I guess elegance ain’t what it used to be.
This shoe is problematic for me. As a beginning, I have to say that love the designs put fourth by United Nude. Many of their shoes seem to rely on ideas that are familiar with many designers and architects, but don’t often migrate to the land of lady’s feet. When I read that the founder Rem D. Koolhaas aimed to “downsize architecture to its smallest and most vulnerable scale, that of a woman’s foot” it made total sense. (He’s not the Rem Koolhaas, but he’s the Rem Koolhaas’s nephew.)
So what’s the problem? I’m not sure that the shoes look as good on the feet as it looks when those shoes start bravely marching for the door. If we take the Eamz Shoe as an example, does the shoe look nothing like a doorstop? Of course, the shoe takes its name and visual ques from the Iconic Eames Aluminum Group of chairs, designed in 1958 for Herman Miller. The idea that you could reconfigure the heel of a woman’s shoe so that the shoe becomes a cantilever, is entirely unique (as far as I know) and the initial misgivings I had with the shoes have migrated to greener pastures.
I gotta’ say, this has been a pretty good year for myself and the blog. My first big accomplishment was having an art show, and now my second notch on the bed post is being featured in Dwell… well, the Neverend Clocks I collaborated on with Furni Creations and Dan Funderburgh. I’ve been reading Dwell magazine since just about the time it started and it’s slightly surreal and amazing to see Kitsune Noir written in there. A big thanks to Kyle Blue and Sam Grawe who may or may not have had anything to do with it.
And just as a heads there will be more clocks coming out in the coming months, we’re just taking a little break for the moment. But I can tell you the next two artists will make you poop yourself… yes, poop.