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Blahnik Tonic for the Blahs

Manolo says, the Manolo, who has been dumped in the downs these past few weeks, has decided he must self-medicate, and what better way than with the invigorating shoes from the Maestro Manolo Blahnik?

For those suffering from the low energy, the Cerreto Buckle Snakeskin d’Orsay Pumps from the Maestro Manolo Blahnik is perhaps restorative of vigor….

Cerreto Buckle Snakeskin d'Orsay Pumps

And if, like the Manolo, you are experiencing the surfeit of black bile, which to the person of normally sanguine temperament is quite distressing, then perhaps the Arsenia Metallic Leather Peep-Toe Pumps will put your humours back into balance.

Arsenia Metallic Leather Peep-Toe Pumps

Simple but effective cures from that most honored of physicians, Manolo Blahnik.

Alexandre Birman Python Gladiator Sandals for the Tuesday

Manolo says, it is Tuesday and you are back at your desk doing that thing, you know, that thing with the work, and you are thinking to yourself… “You know what this place needs…more GLAM!”

That is what has been bothering your for these past many weeks, the utter and complete drabness of your workplace. In fact, when it comes down right to it, the beige-on-beige-on-white decorating scheme of the modern office is sapping you of your vital essences.

What is required here is more mirrored tiles, more stainless steel, more gilded surfaces, maybe even the disco ball in the break room!

But first, lest us start with your feets…

Alexandre Birman Gold Gladiator Sandals

The gold, python gladiator platform sandals from the Alexandre Birman… Perfect!

Manolo the Columnist: Gigi from Sam Edelman

Manolo says, here is the Manolo’s latest column for the Express of the Washington Post.

Dear Manolo,

I love most of your shoe recommendations, unfortunately, I can’t afford many of them, as I’m just a poor office drone. Can you suggest some inexpensive flat sandals I could wear on the weekends this summer?

Patricia

Manolo says, as is usually his custom, the Manolo recommends that the poor girls save their monies and purchase the best quality of super fantastic feetwear that they can afford, for such investments are repaid many times over in comfort, beauty and the satisfaction of wearing.

But, the Manolo also sympathizes with the poor working girls, who must work hard to pay the rent on the tiny, ninth-floor-walk-up, studio apartment in the grungy bohemian part of town, where all of the boys wear the too-skinny-jeans and ride the fixed-gear bicycles.

Indeed, the Manolo, himself, knows what it is like to be poor, so poor that you must fashion your own super fantastic flat sandals out of the Pabst Blue Ribbon cans and pieces of oversized hipster eyeglasses you have found in the dumpster behind that ironically iconic (iconically ironic?) dive bar.

And so the Manolo would recommend to you the Gigi from the Sam Edelman as being the simple but good-looking, moderately priced flat sandal for your summer wearing needs. It is available in fifteen different colors and materials, from “spicy orange” to “silver boa”, although the Manolo is partial to the “natural cork” finish. For the less adventurous, “saddle and black” would be the good choice.

Gigi from Sam Edelman

Giuseppe Zanotti Ankle-Wrap Peep-Toe Booty for the Thursday

Giuseppe Zanotti Ankle-Wrap Peep-Toe Bootie

Manolo says, here is yet another of the recent Giuseppe Zanotti shoes which has befuddled the Manolo.

On the one of the hands, it is strikingly original, this combination of khaki and leather, and the Manolo could think of many items of clothing with which this shoe could be profitably paired by the super fantastic girl.

And yet, on the other of the hands, perhaps this combination and look is too much Beau Geste, like the puttees worn by the Legionnaires. Maybe it is too costumey, no?

And now the Manolo asks, would you wear it?

Nicholas Kirkwood Platform Silk Peep Toes for the Monday

Manolo says, it is Monday and you are back at your desk, and ayyyyy! Look at all of the work that must be cleared away before you can go on the two week of the vacation.

Hurry! You must get to it before the big day arrives and you depart for two week of sun in the fun!

Of the course, you must also be certain to leave undone the few semi-important items which only you can do, so that your bosses and co-workers will realize that they cannot get along with out you. (Be sure also to hide at least one very important client file somewhere unlikely.) After all, the last thing you would want is for someone to realize the painful truth, that your position at the XYZ Corp could be filled by the well-trained orangutan.

But, do not worry. It is not your fault. Various studies over the last decade have proven that 87% of all private sector positions (and 98% of government jobs) could be done entirely by analog computers, greater apes and border collies.

“But, Manolo,” you are saying, “What about the robots?”

“Ha,” replies the Manolo, “what can the robot do that the Australian shepherd or the bonobo cannot?”

No, it is clear, the future belongs to the monkeys and the canids.

In the meantime, while you are waiting for our new animal overlords to take charge, here are the beautiful shoes…

Nicholas Kirkwood Platform Silk Peep Toe Pumps

Nicholas Kirkwood Platform Silk Peep-Toe Pumps.

Beautiful shoes, truly, they are what separate us from the beasts of the field!

Manolo the Columnist: Whirl from Stuart Weitzman

Manolo says, here is the Manolo’s latest column for the Express of the Washington Post.

Dear Manolo,

At the end of July I’m going to a big deal wedding in Atlanta. I’ve already picked out my dress, a muted floral with a generally light peach tone, but now I need a pair of shoes to go with. What do you suggest?

Moncia

Manolo says, ayyyy! Hotlanta in July! Fiddle-dee-dee and thank goodness for the invention of the air conditioning!

And now the Manolo must admit that despite his many visits to the Atlanta he does not fully understand this city. On the one of the hands, Atlanta seems as Southern as Southern can be, at every turn celebrating it’s historic Southern heritage with as much enthusiasm as any place in America. Indeed, it is difficult to escape from the club of Gone-With-the Wind Southerness with which the city attempts to beat the unsuspecting visitor over the head.

And yet, on the other of the hands, whenever the Manolo visits Atlanta he seems to encounter only the transplanted Yankees and their progeny.

“We moved here from Boston in ’92, y’all” said the lady in Lennox Square Mall, “My brotha came down in ’94.”

And yet, on the third of the hands, Atlanta is indisputably the world-class city of entertainment and business, the home of Coca-Cola, CNN, and Elton John.

It is all so confusing.

Look! Here is the Whirl from the Stuart Weitzman, the strappy sandal in the oyster color that will allow your dress to shine in the Hotlanta sun.

Whirl from Stuart Weitzman

FN ShoeStar, The Winner!

Manolo says, and now we come to the twentieth episode when the final judging is completed and the winner is announced.

And it is…Rachel!

This is the not unexpected outcome, as not only is Rachel the very competent designer of the shoes, but also she has the very well-developed commercial sense, which the judges, who were drawn from the ranks of the shoe selling professionals, seemed to appreciate very much.

Still, the Manolo could be considered Team Keena, for she was the more original and interesting designer of the pair, and her final strappy sandal was one of the best shoes made all season long.

And now the Manolo wishes to sit back and watch the careers of all of these six contestants develop. He suspects that Rachel will be very successful, and he hopes that the same will be said of Keena.

Gucci Inga Strappy Ankle Boots for the Monday

Manolo says, it is Monday and you are back at your desk doing that thing that you do so as to earn that money that you need.

It is not that you dislike working for The Man, per se, for indeed your work is mostly not unpleasant, and the majorities of the peoples with whom you work are mostly somewhat not intolerable.

Yes, there are the exceptions, co-workers whom you believe need to be fired…out of the cannon…into the ocean, such as that officious and meddlesome woman in accounting, Harmony Voldemort, a.k.a. “She Who Must Not Be CC’d in Memos.”

It is strange, for although this dour woman, the mere “assistant clerk of accounting operations”, would appear to have no exalted title nor position, everyone in your office is deferential to her. Even your hard-charging, take-not-the-prisoners boss, Bob Gummidge, speaks to her in the most polite and civil tongue, occasionally even flirting with her(!), this despite the fact that she looks like the dyspeptic French bulldog, squat and jowly, with the half-lidded, vaguely mammalian eyes.

Of the course, this effort at forced civility always leaves Mr. Gummidge spent, you know this for the fact, because he locks himself in his office for the remainder of the day following one of Harmony’s visits.

Your own interactions with this bureaucratic gorgon have always been unpleasant: ranging from the simple elevator snubs, to brusquely offensive notes about picayune discrepancies on your expense reports, the wrangling over which can often delay the reimbursement for your business travel for the months and months.

And yet, throughout all of this, the actual source of this woman’s power remains mysterious.

“Oh, she’s in charge of something or other, expense accounts, I think,” says your best office pal, Julia.

“Yeah, but then why does Gummidge bow and scrape before her,” you reply, “I’ve been here nearly ten years, and as far as I can tell she’s never been promoted, she’s still in the same clerk’s job.”

“I heard that she was the one that got Jeff C. fired,” said Julia, referring to the cheerful and handsome young man who was briefly the best thing about going to the office. (Ahh, if only you had been twenty year younger, fifteen-pounds slimmer, and not married to Gary…but then, twenty years ago, Gary was not unlike Jeff C., all sunny and funny and young.)

“No way! Really? Why?”

“Sexual harassment,” interjects Deadpan Mike as he walks by your cubicle.

And you and Julia laugh and laugh at the idea! So ridiculous!

And then you both suddenly stop, as you realize that Harmony Voldemort has the very symmetrical features and the amazing bone structure underneath her middle-aged jowls, and as you both simultaneously recall those old rumors about the womanizing reputation of the ancient Old Man Jones, the Founder and CEO Emeritus, and how he supposedly had to give part of the company to some employee or other because of it.

Look! Gucci! Gucci!


Gucci Inga Strappy Ankle Boots

The Inga Strappy Leather Ankle Boots from Gucci

Manolo the Columnist: Henley II from Ralph Lauren

Manolo says, here is the newest column of the Manolo for the Express of the Washington Post.

Dear Manolo,

Now that summer has arrived, I’ve been powerfully tempted to don a pair of airy mandals to wear with my summer weight suits. My wife advises me that this would be a very bad thing. What do you suggest?

Rob

Manolo says, yes it is true, not since the waning days of the Roman Empire have the toes of serious men been so conspicuously in evidence. Indeed, earlier this year, his Honorable Excellency, The President Barack H. Obama was photographed eating the parti-colored, Hawaiian snow cone while wearing the polo shirt, board shorts and the flip-flops, his presidential toes exposed for the entire world to see.

One cannot imagine the Dwight Eisenhower, or the Teddy Roosevelt, or even the Grover Cleveland appearing in the public place in mandals, much less the Wal-Mart flip-flops, but clearly, such bygone standards of dress a

nd comportment no longer apply in our informal age, to the point that the most powerful man in the world feels free to let his hairy toes breath glorious fresh air.

The Manolo says, do not be that man. Do not give in to the temptation to dress like the ten-year-old boy on the way to the comic book store. Do not be “That Man With the Toes”. Take pride in your appearance and cover your toes for the sake of humanity and the protection of your womenfolk.

Here is the Henley II from the Ralph Lauren Collection, the traditional two-tone oxford, the sort of shoe that has long been recognized as the gentlemanly response to the heat of summer.

Henley II from Ralph Lauren Collection

Christian Louboutin Ana Strass Crystal Sandals for the Monday

Manolo says, it is Monday and you are back at your desk wishing that you had managed to make the first two weeks of June your vacation, rather than the last two weeks of July.

You need the break, because a) it has been the powerfully awful month or so at your place of employment, what with the off-laying of various low-level employees and the added work which has been piled upon you as the result, and b) because the school year has ended for your children, and your 12-year-old son and your 15-year-old daughter are at the home, alone, unsupervised.

This should not really be the cause of worry, as not only are they the generally good children, but they are also plenty old enough to care for themselves. Indeed, your own grandfather held down the adult employment by that age, something he never failed to mention at the various family gatherings.

“On Friday afternoons, I’d hand your great-grandfather my pay envelope, and he’d hand me back two one-dollar bills. That was my money for the whole week. Lunch, Dinner, Sodey Pop. The whole shootin’ match. Fourteen years old, working a man’s job for two dollars a week.”

“Yes, Grandpap,” you’d answer, dutifully.

“A course, didn’t need that much money back then. A nickle’d get you a candy bar, a dime would do for a hotdog.”

“Yes, Grandpap.”

“Bought my first car for $94. People now-a-days don’t know the meaning of money. Think it grows on trees like persimmons, er pippin apples.”

Look! Beautiful shoes!

Christian Louboutin Ana Strass Crystal Sandals

The Ana Strass Crystal Sandals from the Christian Louboutin.

What would your Grandpappy say?

Manolo the Columnist: Willie from Diane von Furstenberg

Manolo says, here is the Manolo’s latest column for the Express of the Washington Post.

Dear Manolo,

This summer I will be on a faculty fellowship at an Ivy League university, where an ambitious film actor is also pursuing one of his 11-or-so literary PhDs. What kind of footwear can I wear with my floaty dresses that will at once announce “serious academic” to my colleagues as well as “important ingenue” in case the actor’s looking for a fresh co-star?

Kate

Manolo says, to paraphrase the immortal Dorothy Parker: seldom cast as actresses, are the girls who wear glasseses.

Despite the unusual circumstances involving the pretty boy actor and the Ivy League fellowship, this is the variation of the old conundrum: how does the smarty-smart girl attract the admiring male gaze without feeling, self-consciously, that she is the gender-traitor for conforming to the traditional, heteronormative, patriarchal orthodoxy.

Although, the modern world, being infinitely more complicated than the 1980’s music videos, offers further difficulties that the acerbic Ms. Parker could never have imagined.

Or, to paraphrase the Thomas Dolby, “Good Heavens, Miss Sakamoto! You’ve filed harassment charges against me for noticing that you’re beautiful!”

Which is why the pretty boy actors tend to date the pretty girl actresses, because such academy-specific complications do not enter into the mathematics of Hollywood romance.

But, it never hurts to give it the old college try. Here is the Willie from Diane von Furstenberg, the sharp-looking wedge heel sandal with enough intellectual interest to maintain ones credibility in the faculty lounge.

Willie from Diane von Furstenberg

Snooki’s Fashion Accessory: Attention

Following her incident with an Italian police car yesterday, nugget sized Snooki of deplorable MTV Jersey Shore “fame” was photographed today wearing a neck brace to accompany her hideous ensemble and unfortunately she couldn’t find one big enough to cover her entire face and body.

Snookie neck brace

Snooki and her co-star Deena got into a minor traffic accident on the streets of Florence, which shockingly according to police reports involved no alcohol. Snookie was apparently driving a vehicle (sitting on what I can only assume was a child’s booster seat, seeing as I find it hard to believe she could see above the steering wheel) and rear ended a police car in front of them that was escorting the talented and fame worthy celebrities to their filming destination. While there was no arrests made and the two suffered no injuries, Snookie decided to play it up today with the addition of a neck brace. BUT only for the cameras. Snookie reportedly removed the neck brace between takes, because I can only assume when you fake an injury it’s annoying to wear  supportive medical supplies.

Snookie removes neck brace

But let’s face it, the real crime here (other than the fact Snooki is in the public eye at all) are her fuzzy Ugg boots. They make her look like some sort of pudgy show poodle that desperately needs to be put down. The fact that those things are allowed to be sold and worn in public is a true tragedy. Not to mention the function of providing warmth is completely null and void seeing as it is currently warm in Italy! Wearing them isn’t even practical, thus, there is no excuse. If she is going to get away with a fender bender and causing minor injuries to two police officers, she at least needs to be arrested or fined for committing rape against my eyes.