Gwyneth Kills the Super Stiletto

Manolo says, the Manolo’s internet friend Linda Grant has alerted us to this article in the Guardian, which declares Gwyneth Paltrow’s new obsession with sky-high shoes to be the signal of stylistic decadence.

It’s rare for an A-lister to sound the death knell on a trend – that honour usually goes to a first-division Wag. But, Gwyneth Paltrow may have done just that this week. After a month of tireless promotion for her new flick, Iron Man, wearing a selection of the most downright precarious heels known to womankind, even the most trend-indulgent among us have had to wonder whether the backlash has begun.


Last month at a Manhattan charity benefit Gwyneth wore her first shock-worthy S&M style heels, then earlier this week in Berlin she staggered down some steps in a pair of 7in shoe boots one day, and teetered on a pair of lacy platform stilettos the next. One pair required an aide for her to lean on; the other pair was accessorised with an uncomfortable look that, I’m guessing, said, “OK, I’m late with this trend, and it’s not entirely me, but I’m going to persevere.”

In recent seasons, high heels have been growing at a staggering rate, with celebrities seemingly daring each other to go higher and higher. Towards the end of 2006, Christian Louboutin and his trademark red soles were regularly name-checked not just in Vogue, but in the tabloid press too. Heel heights became a story in their own right. […] The result being that any two-bit celebrity who wants to be papped now knows that she need only strap on some platform spikes with nosebleed potential and coverage is pretty much guaranteed.

But there are signs that a quiet backlash is beginning. Celebrities who don’t want to be associated with a limo lifestyle have turned their back on heels.

This end of the super-tall shoes arrives none to soon for the Manolo who has grown weary of this excess. Indeed, the persistence of the tall platforms has come as the surprise to the Manolo who was predicting the demise of the platform trend last year (although, in the Manolo’s favor, what we are seeing here are stiletto heeled shoes with the hidden platform, which are different from the sort of chunky platforms that were being seen last year.)

As for Gwyneth the fashion icon, the problem with her wearing these outrageous high heels is that her true style is more modernist bohemian than trendy couture, and with these shoes she is allowing herself to be led astray, chasing after the will-o-the-wisp trend, rather than being faithful to her core style.

P.S. The Manolo’s internet friend Just Jared has pictures of Gwyneth Paltrow in the golden Giuseppe Zanotti gladiator sandals, beautiful flat shoes that suit her perfectly.