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Risp Knotted Peep-Toes from Manolo Blahnik For the Tax Day Monday

Manolo says, it is Monday and …

TAX DAY!!!!

TAX DAY!!!!

TAX DAY!!!!

TAX DAY!!!!

TAX DAY!!!!

Here is the Manolo’s best advice…put the thick envelope with the 1040 into the mail box, open the bottle of the mid-priced chardonnay, pour yourself the big glass, and stare at this for several minutes…

Risp Knotted Peep-Toe Pumps from Manolo Blahnik

The Risp Knotted Peep-Toe Pumps from the Maestro Manolo Blahnik

Beautiful, elegant, cool, classical, and guaranteed to take some of the sting out of life’s indignities.

Shoes for the Princess

Manolo says, the people at the Feetwear News have asked five famous designers of the shoes to tell the world what they would make for the Princess-to-be Kate Middleton to wear for the wedding.

Here is the design of our maestro, the Manolo Blahnik.

Manolo Blahnik for Kate Middleton

Manolo Blahnik for Kate Middleton

His design: An ivory silk pump with organza lilies of the valley and sea pearls
“It represents springtime and everything fresh and new, which is what Kate Middleton is all about.”

And now, you must go see the rest of the designs (be sure to click on the “images” button).

Interview with the Maestro Manolo Blahnik

Manolo says, from the Hemispheres Magazine comes yet more evidence that our maestro di tutti maestri, Manolo Blahnik, is perhaps the most delightful person who has ever lived.

HEMISPHERES: Was there ever any part of creating shoes that you had a hard time perfecting?

Manolo Blahnik in his pyjamas, 1973

Manolo Blahnik in his pyjamas, 1973. From A Chequered Past


BLAHNIK: I started making them with no idea of how to actually do it. A friend of mine was friends with [English designer] Ossie Clark, and he asked me, “Would you like to do shoes for my show?” The first shoes I made for that show were made of white rubber. I forgot, and they forgot, to put steel inside the rubber, so the shoes were very compromised, as you can imagine. The models walked very strangely. It was a mistake, but it looked very interesting, to me at least. It took me fifteen years to really understand shoemaking, and I’m still learning.

And this is exactly what the humble Manolo the Shoeblogger was saying in his discussions of the FN Shoe Star, that shoemaking is the wicked hard craft, something that can only be mastered with many years of assiduous study and practice.

But, wait, there is more…

HEMISPHERES: Do you follow pop culture at all? Any reality shows or bad pop music you are obsessed with?

BLAHNIK: Everything is trashy now, so it’s very difficult to choose. I used to love Hollywood, but not now. No one is powerful. The last star who was powerful was Julia Roberts. The other day I saw a girl, very pretty, short with black shoes. I said, “You look like Audrey Hepburn,” and she said, “I don’t know who that is.” I asked, “Don’t you know Sabrina? Love in the Afternoon? Breakfast at Tiff any’s?” Nothing. My hands were almost ready to push her. My staff gave me an iPad, but I’m not mad about technology. I love old-fashioned things: books, magazines. The only time I use technology is to buy movies.

HEMISPHERES: You find a lot of creative inspiration in old films.

BLAHNIK: The most beautiful thing in America is the movies. It seems sad that schools aren’t teaching fi lms as part of American education. Did you know last year in New Zealand they discovered a huge archive of old silent film prints? It’s an amazing find: a lost John Ford, early Vola Vale, actresses like Mabel Normand whom nobody knows about! Films are my life. I adore films. It’s my diet, my nourishment. I get enormous pleasure from them. Also books. I have all these books behind me right now on shelves! Very soon my family will have to come move it all to the country house, because I cannot breathe anymore. There is all this dust. Books everywhere. If there is a moment and I’m rushing and everything collapses, it will be a catastrophe.

Once again, the Maestro fully justifies our adoration!

Manolo Blahnik Clausado D’Orsay Pumps For the Monday

Manolo says, it is Monday, and you are NOT back at your desk, NOT slaving away for the man.

You were supposed to be back in the office this morning, as surely as the sun rises in the Easterly direction, doing your bit to increase the bottom line of MarScro International, the privately held company with interests in the manufacturing, importation and marketing of such diverse products as the lead-based Chinese toys, powdered Sudanese baby formula, and Liberian-made cellphones.

You were supposed to be back at the work, but on Christmas Day, shortly after nine in the morning, you received the strangest phone call from the CEO, Mr. S., himself, the eccentric billionaire famous in the financial press for driving the 1962 Nash Rambler (which he purchased new), and for chasing business reporters away from his decrepit three-bedroom home with the walking stick.

It was the strangest call, because the perpetually sour, old Mr. S. sounded giddy, perhaps even drunk, shouting “Merry Christmas”, and weepily thanking you for being such the faithful employee. And then he gave you the week off, followed by the big raise.

At that point, you became certain that the phone call was some lame practical joke, that this was not really the CEO, but rather some co-worker playing the cruel trick upon you.

“No, no, my dear lady. I assure you it is I.”

“But, sir, it may sound like you, but…but….”

“But, it is not my usual behavior? Not my custom to give raises to valued employees?”

“Yes, sir. Not your usual behavior.”

“Well, let us just say that I am a changed man, that from this day forth, I shall know how to keep Christmas well.”

And then he asked about your son.

“And how is little Tom?”

“He’s fine, sir.”

“Is he? The last I saw of the boy he was in a leg brace, so pathetic.”

“No, sir, he’s fine now. He’s a sophomore at Johns Hopkins, on a lacrosse scholarship.”

And then you remember that Tommy had come into the office the few years ago, on crutches, right after he had hyperextended his knee in the scrimmage against the varsity team.

When you finally hung up, “Merry Christmas!” and headed back into the family room to finish the opening of the presents, you were still not sure it had really been him.

But this morning, while you were sitting in the kitchen, drinking the coffee and debating whether or not you should get dressed and go into the office, the doorbell rang.

You pulled your housecoat tight around you, and went to the door, where you discovered the courier standing on the front step. He said your name. You signed the receipt. And then he handed you the thirty-five pound turkey, together with the envelope containing the fancy Christmas card and the substantial, year-end bonus check, with the words “Merry Christmas!” scrawled in the spidery script on the subject line.

And now, you are sitting at your computer thinking about getting some new shoes…

Manolo Blahnik Clausado Dorsay Pump

Something like these Maestro Manolo Blahnik Clausado D’Orsay Pumps in this rich blue color…. You have certainly earned them.

The Manolo Recommends 8 Gift Books for the 2010

Manolo says, it is the well known fact that the Manolo is the ardent reader, someone who takes great pleasure in the well-written words. And so, allow the Manolo to suggest to you the few books that you might consider giving as the gifts to the peoples on your List of Xmas.

1)
The Thoughtful Dresser

In April, when The Thoughtful Dresser by the Manolo’s friend Linda Grant was released in America, the Manolo said the following

Make no mistake, if, like the Manolo, you are the reasonably intelligent person who likes the clothes, and the shoes, and thinking about why people wear what they wear, you will adore this book.

And so, for the clothing-obsessed persons of some intellect on your shopping list, you could do no better than to present them with the copy of this marvelous little book.

2)
How I Became a Famous Novelist by Steve Hely

Perhaps the funniest book the Manolo has read in the past year is How I Became a Famous Novelist. It is ridiculous in the most incredibly delightful way, certain to make anyone who reads it giddy with pleasure.

3)
Financial Lives of the Poets

Johnathan Franzen’s Freedom is so 2007. If you want to read about the American life as it is lived in the year 2010, then you must read The Financial Lives of the Poets. Sure to be dated in late 2011, this is the remarkably jolly and well-written account of our current deplorable condition.

4)
Gunns Golden Rules

For the Manolo, as for thinking peoples everywhere, the best thing to come out of the Project Runway will forever be the Tim Gunn. His fashion advice has always been classically stodgy but sound, however, it is as the life and deportment coach where he truly shines. Thus, for the person in need of the little help, the Manolo suggests, Gunn’s Golden Rules.

5)
Seven Fires by Francis Mallmann

For the most atavistic of manly men chefs who harbor the openly poetic side, allow the Manolo to recommend the Seven Fires: Grilling the Argentine Way, from the hand of the magnificent Francis Mallmann.

6)
Cooking For Geeks: Real Science, Great Hacks, and Good Food

And for the more cerebrally inclined and less poetic chefs of your acuaintance, you should perhaps consider the Cooking For Geeks: Real Science, Great Hacks, and Good Food, as being the sort of gift book that will provide much entertainment.

7)
Fasihoning Fashion

With exactly the right amount of informative historical text and beautiful photos Fashioning Fashion: European Dress in Detail, 1700 – 1915 would be the perfect thing to give to the would-be fashion designerish teen.

8)
Manolo Bhalnik Book: New Shoes

Finally, the new book of shoe pictures from the Maestro Manolo Blahnik…what more needs be said?

Blahnik Mink Bootie

Manolo says, one of the Manolo’s internet friends has asked him the question.

Dear Manolo,
Manolo Blahnik Nesta Fur Bootie
I was lucky enough to have scored these beautiful, gray Manolo Blahnik Nesta fur ankle boots on sale for 40% off.

The problem is I’m not sure what to do with them. They’re so fabulous but in this peculiar retro kind of way that does not mesh with my usual sense of style. I’m more of an edgy, minimalist kind of girl; think skinny jeans, motorcycle boots, thigh high boots, lots of black, you get the idea.

These boots are so not part of my usual repertoire, but they captured my heart and now I am at a complete loss. The salesperson suggested a fur scarf or fur-trimmed something or other, but I’m afraid that would make me look like the White Witch from the Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe.

Is this the kind of footwear that can only be worn while sitting on a sleigh surrounded by elf minions? Say it ain’t so, because I live in Seattle where sleighs and elves are in short supply. Would you be so kind as to suggest a few possible outfits? Casual and dressy?

Thank you so much for all your awesomeness! You never fail to amuse and tempt me with your humor and delicious shoe selections. Love you!

Hien

For the Manolo, the biggest news in this note is that the Nordstroms now carries the shoes of the Maestro!

Soon, the Capital of Grunge shall become the Locus of Super Fantastic!

And this letter, it is proof of the civilizing qualities of the Manolo Blahnik shoes. Before this, our internet friend was content to wear the dour black, like the punk rock Spanish grandee.

But now she wishes to be… super fantastic!

Actually, the Manolo thinks that his friends fashion instincts, although perhaps overly muted, are essentially sound, especially as this magnificent shoe is one that will work with almost anything she might wear: tights, rocker-girl jeans, the shorty punkish skirt, with the black cashmere sweater

The one thing the Manolo would recommend, however, is the addition of the short flair coat, because these are the shoes for wearing when… Baby. It’s. Cold. Outside.

Perhaps something like this Diane von Furstenburg Lady Coat

Diane von Furstenberg Lady Coat

But, regardless, these are indeed the most super fantastic booties!

The Perfect Gift for the Shoe Lover

New Shoes Book by Manolo Blahnik

Manolo says, what more needs to be said? It is the brand new book of drawings from our Maestro Manolo Blahnik, with commentary by Suzy Menkes.

Happy Birthday to the Maestro!

Manolo says, Happy Birthday to the Maestro Manolo Blahnik, whose miraculous birth occurred this day, in 1942.

5 Questions with the Maestro

Manolo says, we are not worthy!

Rumplemeyers, plumcake, bibs, and the spirited animadversion on the platform shoe; what more could we, the humble devotees of the Maestro Manolo Blahnik, wish in the two minute interview?

Via the blog of the 5th at 58th, the blog of Bergdorf Goodman department store. And, while you are visiting their site, view the Fall Bergdorf Goodman Shoe Book, it is exquisite.

Six Years of Shoeblogging: Shoes With Which to Overawe the Natives

N.B. In honor of the Manolo’s six years of shoeblogging, the Manolo has decided to repost this week some of his favorite pieces.

This post, in which the Manolo responds to the inquiry from one of his dearest internet friends, first appeared on March 13th, 2007

Manolo says, one of the Manolo’s dear internet friends has asked him the question.

Querido Manolo,

I have just received an invitation to present a paper in Helsinki this summer at a conference on the laws of war. This means that I shall be the only twenty-something-year-old female in a hall full of big, gruff, snarly, manlymen. Since genetic constitution and chromosomal make-up render it impossible for me to project an image of gruff, snarly, girlitude, I prefer to present myself as both a lover and a fighter. Could you please recommend a pair of show-stopping shoes that would convey this image?

Further considerations:
(1) Price and heel altitude are distant seconds to superfantasticness.
(2) I think it’s time for me to buy my first Manolos.

If you decide to post this query, could you please leave my name out? Muchisimas gracias!

With warmest wishes from frosty NYC,

Manolo says, mucho-macho, snarly, gruffy-huffy, law-of-war manly men? In Finland?

Oy, to the Manolo this does not sound like fun. Indeed, it sounds as if the Manolo’s nameless friend is riding out to the annual Mongol Golden Horde company picnic, featuring all the roast badger and curdled mares’ milk you can eat, followed by the spirited game of “Kick the Head”.

In this case, she should do as the Manolo does when forced to participate in the strange native rites, behave as if you were the eccentric 19th century British explorer.

Be polite, be friendly, be sympathetic, but make it clear to the cannibalistic savages, through your dress and your comportment, that you represent the superior culture, one which offers these benighted souls the benefits of indoor plumbing and the afternoon tea.

Thus, when the lawyers of war offer you the drink of honeyed mead in the polished skull of their slain-in-battle senior partner, you must sip politely, and smilingly promise them, in your best Queen’s English, that you will return soon with the Royal Navy gunboat and destroy their God-forsaken way of life.

Of the course, in the meantime, the Manolo’s friend must dress in the manner that shows them that she is the powerful and important person in her own culture, one who must not be trifled with (or, at the least, one who must not be cut up and tossed into the bubbling cauldron of lunch.)

What better way to do this than with the aggressively beautiful shoes?

Here are two classic pairs of the Maestro Manolo Blahnik’s shoes that one should not live without.

Carolyne by Manolo Blahnik   Manolo Loves!  CLICK!Carolyne by Manolo Blahnik   Manolo Likes!  Click!

Either in the mid-heel or the high-heel, in the dark brown or the black, these shoes are serious enough for the everyday work, and yet, kick-ass enough to quell the native insurrection.

If one truly wishes to leave the savages speachless, however, then the Manolo suggests these slightly less practical pumps from the Christian Louboutain.

Louboutin Metallic Python Pumps

Metallic python?

Expected reaction: “Ooooooh, shiny! Lawyer Grog think pretty lady in glittery snake shoes have mighty mojo. Must listen attentively to presentation.”

Manolo Blahnik Flower D’Orsay for the Day of Celebration

Manolo Blahnik Flower D'Orsay Pumps

Manolo says, what better way to celebrate this auspicious day than with beautiful shoes from our patron saint, the Maestro di Tutti Maestri, Manolo Blahnik?

Subtle, elegant, unusual, whimsical, beautiful, all the things we should strive for in our daily lives.

Blahnik Flower Toe Suede Pump to Welcome the Autumn

Manolo says, the Manolo will allow the Keats to speak for him…

Where are the songs of Spring? Ay, where are they?
Think not of them, thou hast thy music too —

Manolo Blahnik Flower-Toe Suede Pump

And what could be more lyrically beautiful than autumnal suede pumps from the Maestro Manolo Blahnik?

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