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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.

Manolo on the Go

Manolo says, the Manolo apologies to his internet friends for the paucity of posts. He has been traveling this weekend, enjoying the Southern hospitality in the most pleasant (although very humid and full of cicadas) city of Nashville.

While you are waiting for the Manolo to return, here is the pair of Stuart Weitzman platform sandals the Manolo saw on the feets of the Southern lady yesterday.

Stuart Weitzman Root

The preppy Southern espadrille, perfect for the Belle Meade ladies!

Manolo the Columnist: D Marine 1 from Geox

Dear Manolo-

I’ve been searching for a good airport shoe. Something that I can walk far in, that slips on and off easily, and one that I can wear socks with – shoe stores can pretend all they want, I know that panty hose do NOT form an impenetrable barrier against bacteria/fungi/gross foot stuff. It seems impossible to find a chic non-sneaker candidate. I either end up barefoot in the airport (ew) or wearing some incredibly ugly clog-type things (also ew) Can you help?

Jen

Manolo says, gone are the days of the Orient Express, when the travelers were politely ushered into luxurious accommodations and conveyed to distant and exotic lands at the leisurely pace,

Now, we are herded down the abattoir chutes like cattle headed for the slaughter, jammed into the metal tubes and flung aloft at tremendous speed, our lives forfeit to the technical competency of peoples we have never met.

In the modern world, being forced to take off the shoes is the least of the indignities we must endure, paling in comparison to the gross indignities of having the federal employees who are paid to do nothing but look at our nudie pictures and touch us in uncomfortable places.

Here is the D Marine 1 from Geox, the ballet flat that is exactly what is required, something comfortable, stylish, and easily removed when the authorities demand to see your toes. Available in black, dark beige, old rose, and the Manolo’s favorite color, smoke grey.

D Marine 1 from Geox

My 5 Best Songs About Shoes

Perhaps I’m addicted to list making (much like my strange addictions to vintage glasses frames and coconut water) but after compiling a list of my favorite movies about shoes, I felt compelled to build a follow up! Music, much like shoes, is a very important facet in my life, so why not combine the two into something acoustically pleasing inspired by that of aesthetic greatness? Shoe songs! What a concept. While there have been many, I have whittled my list down to 5 of what I consider to be the very best songs about shoes.

 

Kenny Loggins - Footloose
5. Kenny Loggins – “Footloose”

This may just be my affinity for young Kevin Bacon talking, but this is a classic shoe tune. It’s a quintessential 80′s song that can’t help but bring a smile to your face, but ultimately it is a serious ditty about a man’s inner struggle to combat his absolute need to dance with his need to fit into a strict society where dancing is not allowed. Oh the inner turmoil and torture! So dark, such overwhelming angst! Kidding.The title track from the wonderfully cheesy 80′s flick Footloose, thing song is fun, great for dancing and an absolute wedding reception staple. This song even got Grandma Joan tapping her toes when it played at my last cousins reception. Not to mention, Sarah Jessica Parker stars in this flick pre Carrie Bradshaw! Those are some serious shoe roots. So kick off those Sunday shoes (or don’t, if they are cute and you can dance in them) and enjoy.

The Beatles - Old Brown Shoe
4. The Beatles – “Old Brown Shoe”

Ahhh, The Beatles. While not everyone is a fan, it is hard to find a person who doesn’t enjoy at least one song. With such a diverse catalog, these gents covered quite a span of music tastes. This song, which features George Harrison on vocals, was originally released as a B-side to “The Ballad of John and Yoko” and displays those four blokes in all of their “we are going through a weird drug phase” glory. Plus it’s one of those tracks with George Harrison on vocals, a bit of a rarity for Beatles hits (obviously not as rare as a Ringo song…poor Ringo), which makes it even more wonderful.

KC and the Sunshine Band - Boogie Shoes

3. KC and the Sunshine Band – “Boogie Shoes”

This playfully suggestive disco hit (are they really talking about dancing?) was featured on the Saturday Night Fever soundtrack and is undoubtedly a song to shake your hips to (in whatever fashion you’d prefer). This tune takes me back when John Travolta was a dreamy blue eyed babe (granted I wasn’t alive at the time, but I’ve seen photos) before he got all bald and starting sporting a weird goatee for Battlefield Earth. Yowch. It just makes me want to throw on my pair of highwaisted bell bottom jeans, which I do in fact own and are wonderful, with some far too tall heels and attempt to dance the night away. Boogie. Shoes. Yes please.

Carl Perkins - Blue Suede Shoes

2. Carl Perkins – “Blue Suede Shoes”

While this song was made popular by the late great Elvis Presley, it was originally written and first performed by Mr. Perkins himself. A fantastic tune of it’s time, if I was a mother when this was released I would have certainly been scared of the hip shaking it induced! This song is not only fun, catchy and made of toe tapping greatness but it also stresses the importance of shoes. Shoes over everything! The lyrics state “you can do anything, but lay off of my blue suede shoes”. And he literally means anything. Arson, theft, slander, enacting violence on his FACE, but when it comes to the shoes you better back the hell off. Well put Perkins, well put.

Nancy Sinatra - These Boots are Made for Walking
1. Nancy Sinatra – “These Boots Are Made for Walking”

This song is sexy. Play it in your room while trying on a pair of boots and try not to feel like a vixen. I dare you. This addictive 60′s hit is the perfect song about shoes: sexy, fun, flirtatious, catchy and it let’s the shoes do all the work. The boots are the star of the song! They own the song, and some day they will own you. I don’t know about you, but I find a bit of truth in these lyrics (serious debt to a shoe addiction?). Interestingly enough, after it’s release this song was widely considered a disappointment after the career legacy of her father Frank. Admittedly, those are some rather big shoes to fill (pun definitely intended), but later on it became one of the most addictive songs of the 60′s. While she never had another hit, this iconic song lives on today as a fantastically sexy ballad to the one we call shoe. Play it again!

I know I left out plenty of greats. What are you favorites?