Antonio Bernardi Sans-a-Heel Platforms

Manolo says, the Manolo does not approve.

The 5 1/2in creations by Briton Antonio Berardi can hardly be described as high heels, since they lack the most important part – a heel.

For the bargain price of £1,800, the wearer will get to totter around with all her weight balanced on a thickened platform sole.

Unsurprisingly, fashionistas are jostling to buy a pair.

Stars including Gwyneth Paltrow and Uma Thurman invested in a black patent version costing more than £1,100, shortly after they were unveiled in Berardi’s spring/summer collection in Paris.

And Victoria Beckham apparently has a snakeskin pair.

They are going on sale in Browns stores in London, where they have to be ordered up to five weeks in advance.

Lincolnshire-born Berardi, 39, said he was inspired by Latin American music and 1980s post-modernism, adding: “When you walk, it is almost on tiptoe. You look really dainty.”

Dainty, as if your feet were bound in infancy by Mandarins.


At Some Point They Become Stilts

Platform Shoes Taken to Their Logical Extreme.

Manolo says, there is only one person who would wear such ridiculous feetwear.

Answer below the jump.


Manish Arora, Spring-Summer 2008

Manolo says, exuberant, ridiculous color is in!

Dolce and Gabbana for the Weekend

Purple Peep Toes from Dolce & Gabbana    Manolo Likes!  Click!

Manolo says, it is Friday, and what better way to celebrate being the Disco Queen of Suburbia than with the exuberantly purple, metallic, platform peep toes from the Dolce and the Gabbana?

The Dipwit

Dipwit by Stuart Weitzman    Manolo likes!  Click!

Manolo says, this platform peep-toe pump from Stuart Weitzman is not unattractive, indeed, it has much to recommend it. Unfortunately, this does not include the name..

But, as the readers of the Monolo know, the shoe designers sometimes go off the rails when naming their shoes.

Whose Shoes, Weekend Edition


Manolo asks, whose shoes?

When the Manolo saw the picture in this morning’s news feed, he immediately knew who it was, as only one person insists on wearing such over-the-top-shoes at any opportunity, however inappropriate, or whatever the cost in personal foot pain.


The Disco Scream

The Shoes That Killed Disco

Manolo says, five-and-the-half inches of mirrored ugly, and exactly the antithesis of the qualities the Manolo was praising yesterday.

P.S. Many thanks to the Manolo’s friend Lindsey, who notes that they look bad even on the model.

Build the Outfit

E7251 from Giuseppe Zanotti   Manolo Likes!  Click!

Manolo says, today, in honor of his new forums, the Manolo is starting the new game: Build the Outfit.

The Manolo gives you the shoes, and you tell him what you would wear with these almost-but-not-quite tacky platform shoes from the Giuseppe Zanotti.

In order to participate you must register at the Manolo’s new Super Fantastic Forums and leave your reply in this thread.

On Friday afternoon, the Manolo will randomly pick the winner from among the participants and give them the $100 Zappos gift certificate!

Roberto Cavalli, Lack of Restraint

T7711 by Roberto Cavalli   Manolo thinks almost! Click!T7048 by Roberto Cavalli    Manolo thinks almost!  Click!

Here you see the two pairs of shoes from the Roberto Cavalli, shoes which properly capture the Robert Cavalli aesthetic, which the Manolo might describe as “Long Island Russian Mafia Gun Moll”.

And yet, for all of that, the Manolo finds these shoes “almost”. Almost worth wearing. Almost beautiful. Almost super fantastic.

The problem is that the Manolo, who believes that true fashion lies on the border between the trashy and the classic, thinks that these shoes are located just across the fashionable border into the land of the trashy, which means these shoes are “almost”.

Of the course, this tendency to keep adding the junk to the shoes until they seem too much is not merely the major draw back of the Roberto Cavalli., it is also undoubtedly his greatest selling point, making his shoes perfectly suited for the flashy and unsophisticated market he has captured.

Do not get the Manolo wrong, the Roberto Cavalli is talented, it is just that he needs to be restrained.

Look here is the picture of the Cavalli at the Costume Institue Gala.

Clearly, this is not the celebrity endorsement which the more sensitive designer would be happy to have.

Update: The Manolo’s internet friend Nicole disagrees.

The YSL Tribute, Redux

Manolo says, here is yet another article about this year’s Super Duper Hottest-Hippest Shoe!!!!, the Yves Saint Laurent Tribute. (About which the Manolo has already written.)

YOU’LL fall head over heels. Maybe literally.

The must-have shoe for spring is the “Tribute” from Yves Saint Laurent, adorned with a towering 5 1/2-inch heel. Sold out in most New York retailers, it’s one of the tallest high-fashion shoes ever produced – yet celebrities such as Christina Aguilera, Jennifer Lopez and Gwen Stefani can’t wait to walk at elevations usually reserved for Las Vegas dancers and Vivid Video actresses.

And who among us would not wish to look like the porn actress?

Of the course, this has not kept the slavering masses and their enablers in the press from enthusing in the breathless voices.

“You’re not going to feel sexier in another shoe,” says Chris Frey, accessories director at Lucky magazine. “It’s one of those things you wear when you’re jumping into a cab, going to the event, and jumping out of a cab. I have a shelf life of about two hours in a shoe like this.”

Frey says the shoe’s insane sex appeal isn’t just about the height, but also the shape and style. Plus, she thinks there’s something confident, gutsy and cool about a girl who can get that high.

“I think what’s so cool about it is we’ve been seeing platforms for so many seasons and they’re not going away. But YSL sexied it up by adding the stiletto,” she says. “Plus it’s a Mary Jane style that’s so hot this season with an ankle strap that’s not too high on the ankle so it still makes your leg look super-long.”

For Frey, they’re also inspirational.

“It’s a lunge-inducing shoe because you want to wear the shortest skirt possible with them,” she says. “It’s like a gym membership for a year in a shoe, because as soon as you put them on you feel five pounds thinner.”

And fifty IQ points dumber.

It is not the bad shoe in the shorter versions, but this excessively tall one is just silly.

If You Must Have the Platform Shoes

Exling by Stuart Weitzman  Manolo Likes!  Click!Exsling by Stuart Weitzman   Manolo Likes!  Click!

Manolo says, yes, the Manolo thinks that the platform mania is coming to the end, but that does not mean that you should not enjoy it while it lasts, just that you should do so in the shoes that will not break your leg.

Here is the cute platform from the Stuart Weitzman. The Manolo especially thinks that this would rock your summer in the whitish “chalk” color.

The Yves Saint Laurent Tribute

Manolo says, for the past few months the Manolo has tried to avoid writing about the Yves Saint Laurent Tribute pumps, the peep-toe mary jane platforms with the six inch heels.

These shoes are the current “it” shoes, the hottest of the hottest, worn by the celebrities such as the J-Lo, the Becks, the Gwen Stefani, the Christina Aguilera and other hot young chickies who are in the eye of the public (often like the persistent sty).

Yves Saint Laurent Tribute in PurpleYves Saint Laurent Tribute in Red

The reason the Manolo has avoided writing about these shoes is that he does not particularly care for them, and because it is the policy of the Manolo to avoid whenever possible becoming involved in the extraordinary popular delusions and in the madness of the crowds.

However, the Manolo has now decided to write about them because there is the amusing article about them in The Mail of London.

Last night, I walked in the hallowed heels of Victoria Beckham, Jennifer Lopez, Christina Aguilera and Gwen Stefani, risking vertigo and personal injury for the sake of high fashion.

And “high” is the key word here. Having survived the experience, girls, I doff my cap to you.

The Yves Saint Laurent “Tribute” Mary Janes are this season’s must-have shoes. In London, they are sold out and there is a waiting list of 200.

On American eBay, the last resort for a desperate shoeaholic, they are changing hands for $1,295 (£648). Mercifully I managed to get hold of one of the last pairs at the YSL store in Manhattan. Next delivery isn’t until mid-May.

The shoes come in three colours: black (with a cream-coloured heel), red or purple, and two heel heights; four inches or five-and-a-half. At the front they have a one-and-a-half inch platform and a thin ankle strap.

“Oh my, they are very, very sexy,” purred Paulo, my Peruvian sales assistant, as I strutted in front of the mirror. I’m 5ft 5in, and was now nearly 5ft 11in. For $660 (£330) – a bargain by today’s designer shoe prices – my legs looked impressively long.

“You could dance all night in them,’ Paulo assured me. “The platform sole actually makes them more comfortable because it’s like your foot is only really working with a two-and-a-half inch heel height. You see?”

As the Manolo has said in the recent past, we have entered the final phase of the platform mania, and these shoes are yet more proof of the Manolo’s thesis.