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Whose Shoes Wednesday…The Answer!

Manolo asked, whose shoes?

Rihanna in the Balenciaga Gladiator Boots

Manolo answers, it is the Rihanna!

Congratulations to the Manolo’s internet friend Spritle, who was the first to identify this week’s personage of note. As many of the Manolo’s sharp-eyed friends noted, it was the stunning Balenciaga gladiator boots, which Rihanna wore frequently last year to great effect, that were the big clue.

The Balenciaga Sportiletto

Manolo says, all of the Manolo’s friends have been emailing the Manolo with the link to this article in the Sun, which expresses outrage about the childishly colorful and futuristic Balenciaga sandal.

THE season’s fashion must-have is a £700 shoe that would be more at home in a toy shop.

The Sportiletto, from a top designer, is a Lego-like high-heel.

The footwear is said to be influenced by snowboarders, but the real inspiration for the crazy child-like design seems to have come from 1980s kiddie favourite the Fisher-Price 1-2-3 Rollerskate.

[…]

Models on the catwalk look bizarre as they wear thick grey tights and jodhpurs to model the Sportiletto. The shoes are designed by Nicolas Ghesquiere for fashion house Balenciaga. Unbelievably, there are already orders waiting at top London stores.

To those who follow the fashion blogs this is the old news, indeed many of the Manolo’s internet friends were reacting as early as March to the appearance of these sheos on the catwalk. Of the course, back then they were still priced at the exorbitant $4175, not the more reasonable £700.

As for the Manolo’s opinion, which has been repeatedly solicited, the Manolo must say that he finds them amusing, in the sort of fun and silly way, and thinks that they could worn to good advantage by the right super fantastic girl.

Certainly, they are not for everyone, and the girl who wears them would have to be young and sporty, as they would look ridiculous on the more mature person.

Also, the Manolo has to say that he much prefers this colorful version of the shoe to the others produced by Balenciaga in the same Fall ’07 collection.

And even this black sandal shown above (next to it’s possible design inspiration) is preferable to the bootie version below.

This, the Manolo does not like.

Yes, this is the unusual shoe, however the Manolo does not reject it out of hand as he thinks it is the worthy experiment, one that is not the complete failure.

The Fate of the Platforms, Part II

Manolo says, one of the Manolo’s internet friends has responded to the Manolo’s post about the platforms.

The shoes above are just for drama…. aren’t they??? I mean, they can’t be for real.

Of course they are for the real.

The Manolo reminds you of the towering Balenciaga fetish-esque ankle boots, which were made famous by the Olsen urchin.


Yes, at the first, when they appeared on the runway, they seemed ridiculous, but they were worn by the celebrities, and now some of the fashion bloggers are reconsidering them.

For the Manolo, however, these Balenciaga boots were yet more evidence that we had entered the terminal phase of this recent iteration of the platforms.

The fashion is no different than any other form of the art, and thus when the classical period has ended and the period of decadence has been entered the artists believe they must push the boundries of their form, sometimes resulting in the ridiculous excess, sometime resulting in the charming beauty.

The Manolo is the lover of the classic, and although he will make the exceptions (such for as the Fragonard) he prefers the Palladian to the Rococo, which is perhaps why both the Balenciaga and the Dior platform excesses leave him cold.