Dolce & Gabbana For the Monday

Manolo says, it is Monday, and you are happily back as your desk doing whatever it is you do for the Man, having spent the final part of the weekend engaged in the big argument with your insensitive lout of the husband.

For years now you have been suggesting that you would like to remodel the basement, removing the knotty pine paneling, green shag carpeting, and that funky leather-clad wet bar, all of which were the handiwork of the previous owners. Of the course, Gary resisted your proposed changes for as long as he could. He has always considered the basement to be his own personal “Fortress of Gary-tude” (which is ridiculous as he already has the garage and the back shed reserved for his various man antics).

However, in August, he finally relented after making the disturbing discovery in the cushions of his sectional.

“Hey! Look what I found,” he said, standing in the kitchen, beaming like Howard Carter and holding something dessicated and black.

“Ugh, what is it?”

“I think it’s an Italian hero sandwich,” And then he mimed bringing it up to his mouth, as if to take the big bite.

“Aaack! Don’t do that!”

After you both agreed that it was probably the leftover from the Super Bowl party, circa 2003, you went to the kitchen drawer where you keep your remodeling dream plans and magazine clippings and pulled out your notes for the basement and handed them to Gary.

“For hygienic reasons, if nothing else,” you said.

Gary just nodded his head, and got immediately to work ordering the new custom beer refrigerator and giant flat-screen television.

And everything had been going remarkably well, until this Saturday, when Gary did the final painting, and you were not there to supervise. You had to spend the day with your 80-year-old mother (the woman should not be driving, which means you are increasingly called upon to go shopping with her, which means lunch at Lubys, which you cannot stand).

So you left Gary with the specific instructions for the paint shopping at the Home Depot: Arabian Sand for three walls, and Sahara Sun (the pleasant light brick red) for the accent wall. But when you got home you found that he had somehow become confuddled and painted three of the walls Sahara Sand, and the fourth Arabian Sun (the wan orange).

And, when you pointed out this egregious error, Gary refused to make the changes.

“I’m done painting, Babe.”

Things escalated from there, and by Sunday afternoon you were not speaking to each other, which seemed to suit Gary just fine, for while you were sulking, he had already moved in the foosball table, new furniture, and big screen television and taken delivery of the pony keg of Sierra Nevada Pale Ale.

Happily, by late Sunday evening, Gary, bouyed by several pints of quality beer and the loss of the Pittsburgh Steelers, put the moves on you, and so you reconciled yourself to the new color scheme and your husband’s mannish indifference to chromatic loveliness.

Still, you need something colorful to lift your spirits, and so you surf to the Manolo’s humble shoe blog hoping to see beautiful shoes, and there you find these deep rose-colored Dolce & Gabbana pumps and you realize that life is pretty good.

D&G Pumps   Manolo Likes!  Click!

Louboutin Dillian Flower For the Tuesday

Manolo says, it is Tuesday and you are back at your desk doing whatever it is you do with the computer and those endless stacks of paper for the eight hours each workday you are not engaged in pointless meetings or bureaucratic wrangling, or avoiding your backbiting co-workers.

Did that sound bitter?

Sorry. You are not bitter, not exactly. You are perhaps disgruntled, and certainly anxious, maybe even slightly angry.

Ever since your company was taken over late last year by MegaMongoManic Corp, your formerly decent job has morphed into the Mr. Toad’s Wild Day Job, with rumors of impending layoffs and financial collapse–each more dire than the last–clambering up and down the office grapevine.

But, you have grown used to that, so perhaps that is not the cause of your aggressive case of the blahs. Perhaps it is the fact that summer has well and truly ended, marking yet another season down the old tubes.


Well, there is nothing for it but shoes, your oldest and bestest friend, always ready to make you feel better when the world has you at its mercy.

Look! Here is the Dillian Flower Pumps fron Christian Louboutin.

Christian Louboutin Dillian Flower Pumps

If looking at this shoe (one of the most wonderful and stylish of this season) does not send the blahs packing, nothing will.

Think Green McQueen

Manolo says, for some reason the Manolo woke up this morning thinking about the green colored shoes, and how difficult they are to wear properly.

For the example, here are the beautiful Alexander McQueen peep-toe pumps in the lovely green color.
Alexander McQueen Peep-Toe Pumps   Manolo Likes!  Click!

The possibilities for these marvelous shoes must be quite limited, indeed, they are perhaps wearable only with the cream or gold colored gown.

Maybe the Manolo should revive the “Build the Outfit” game, as the Manolo would be very interested in seeing what his internet friends could devise for these.

Manolo the Columnist

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

Dear Manolo,

Summer is at an end and I need a new pair of work shoes for the fall, something with a bit of a heel. Of course, I can’t afford anything too extravagant as I am but a poor working girl. Please help.


Manolo says, as always the Manolo counsels his friends to save their monies and purchase the most super fantastic work shoes possible. Nothing is as satisfying as wearing beautiful shoes of high quality into your place of employment.

Of the course, the Manolo knows that the economic times they are very difficult, indeed, in technical terms the economic conditions are as hard as the lips of the woodpecker.

Likewise, the Manolo knows what it is like to be poor, so poor that you must make your own super fantastic work shoes out of promotional key chains and drink coozies you have pilfered from your previous place of work, and laboriously worked into the surprisingly attractive pair of Ringo Starr ankle boots.

Look here is the Bayville Loafer from the Michael by Michael Kors, the handsome high-heeled patent-leather loafer available in the very deep red color that the Manolo thinks is wonderfully autumnal.

Bayville Loafer  from Michael by Michael Kors   Manolo Likes!  ClicK!

Valentino For the Tuesday

Manolo says, the Manolo is feelings slightly down in the dumps this afternoon. And so, what better way to cheery oneself up then with the beautiful pair of the bright red shoes?

Valentino Red Patent Leather Peep-Toe Pump

Here is the gorgeous patent leather peep-toe pump from Valentino, exactly the sort of shoe that would convert any day into the living-on-sunshine festival of good humor.


Manolo the Columnist

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

Dear Manolo,

I’m about to become another victim of the bad economy. After six years with the same company, I’ve just been told that I am being laid off next week. I’ve got some money in the bank, and my expenses are not too high, so I’m okay for a little while. However, before I have to go out there and start looking for work again, I’d like to buy a new pair of business pumps. I’ve budgeted $200 for this, please help.


Manolo says, ayyyyyy! You have the Manolo’s sympathy. Such terrible news!

Or, is it?

This last week, the article appeared in the Los Angeles Times describing the handful of youthful ex-workers who have found that being out of work was the bestest thing ever, for at last they could engage in those life-enriching hobbies with which traditional gainful employment had interfered, such as surfing and mountain biking. This trend was not unemployment, said the The Los Angeles Times, rather it was “funemployment”.

Funemployment! What could be more American than this? To make barely palatable lemonade from the most shriveled and bitterest of lemons!

Of the course, for most of us, funemployment means that we will finally have the time to spend rooting around in the dumpster behind the Whole Foods looking for organic carrots that are not yet brown. Such fun!

Here is the Olivia from Prari, the handsome, Italian-made black pump with exactly the correct amount of tasteful detail to set it apart. And, look! They are on sale, nearly 50% off of the regular price.

Olivia from Prari  Manolo Likes!  Click!

Manolo the Columnist

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

Dear Manolo,

In late March, I’ll be attending a wedding in Northern Virginia, at very upmarket horse farm (think dressage and fox hunting). Supposedly, all of Washington’s society will be there. What do you recommend I wear?


Manolo says, ayyyy! The Manolo’s friend is cavorting with the horsey set! With their hacking jackets, and riding crops, and miscellaneous bits of incomprehensible leather tack, all of it imbued with the deep scent of ripe horse flesh and unpleasant social snobbery.

Of the course, for the Manolo, the mere whiff of horse sends the Manolo, Proust-like, back to his gypsy childhood, and to bad memories of Beto and La Bruja, those disreputable horses who pulled the family caravan about the Spanish countryside.

Like congressmen, they were obstinate and stupid, given to bad tempers, unwilling to do hard work , and overly fond of rich fodder, and they forever cured the Manolo of considering horses glamorous, much as close contact with the congressmen cures the residents of Washington of their illusions.

Speaking of Washington, at the moment everyone is taking their cue from the new First Lady, and thus the Camelot-era-ish low pump has returned. Look, here is Candidate from Stuart Weitzman, the classic, kitten-heeled pump.
Candidate from Stuart Weitzman   Manolo Likes!  Click!

Manolo the Columnist

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

Dear Manolo,

Like many folks I’ll be going to Washington, D.C. next week for the historic inauguration of Barack Obama, I’ve even managed to get invited to a couple of the balls. I’ve picked out a suitable gown—a midnight blue satin gown and heirloom brooch that belonged to my grandmother. What do you suggest in the way of shoes?


Manolo says, Ayyyy! Everyone who is anyone (of the non-Republican persuasion) is getting dressed up in their finery and heading to Washington of the D.C. to dance the celebratory dance of the new presidency!

Of the course, while the common peoples will be dancing in the streets and their homes, the more fortunate, and better-connected persons, will be attending one or more of the fancy balls.

In such places, one may mingle with the shakers and the movers and the big wheels, and with the doddering senators and the rascally representatives, all done up in their gala suits, and three sheets to the breeze intoxicated on domestic champagne, hotel ballroom surf-and-turf, and elective power.

All of this so that you may catch the briefest semi-obstructed glimpse of the new president and his wife dancing during those three minutes when he visited your particular ball.

Look, here is Stuart Weitzman Riccimid in the black peau de soie with exactly the correct amount of classical decoration.

Riccimid by Stuart Weitzman   Manolo Likes!  Click!


Manolo the Columnist

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

Dear Manolo,

My husband has surprised me with tickets to see my favorite opera singer, Denyce Graves, in her signature role, Carmen. I have decided to wear my favorite “little black dress,” a vintage wrap dress that was my grandmother’s. Can you help me find the perfect shoes?


Manolo says, Denyce Graves as Carmen? Ayyyy! Que suerte, what wonderful good luck!

Of the course, whenever one attends the opera the temptation is strong to go beyond simply “getting dressed up” and move into the realm of costuming. The Manolo cannot tell you how many times he has seen buxom blonde women wearing pigtails to see Wagner, or dark-haired women with consumptively pale makeup for La Boheme.

However, it is Carmen that brings out the worst offenders, women who affect Spanish mantillas, and put tall combs in their hair, and the single rose behind ther ear.

Do not do this, unless you are prepared to go the full measure of costuming, by putting your husband into the matador’s traje de luces, the so-called “suit of lights”, with the be-sequined bolero jacket, pink tights, and bullfighting slippers. If you are going to do something silly, do not make it the half measure.

Look, here is the elegant black slingback pump from Christian LaCroix, the shoe with its very own “Flower Song”.

Slingback Pumps from Christian Lacroix   Manolo LIkes!  Click!


Manolo the Columnist

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

Dear Manolo,

I’ve been invited on a fabulous two-week trip to Monaco at the end of October, and I need some shoes. Normally, I’m a high-heel girl, but I’m wondering if I’ll end up hobbling around by the end of the trip. Are there any cute (possibly preppy) mid-heels that are comfy?


Manolo says, Ayyyyy! Now is the best time to visit the Principality, the weather is quite pleasant, the summer crowds have left for the season, and Prince Albert is still the balding bachelor on the prowl.

Of the course, if you plan on doing any walking in the city, which is the easiest way to see Monte Carlo, you will need the comfortable shoes. Indeed, it is difficult to pretend that you are the glamorous Princess Grace Kelly if your feets are feeling like querulous Irish scullery maids after the hard day in the kitchen.

And, since it is Monaco, and you will also require shoes that have some stylish flair to them. Thus the Manolo suggests this mid-heel suede cut-out pump from Belle by Sigerson Morrison as being something that is, at the same time, feminine, attractive, and very practical.

Black pump from Belle by Sigerson Morrison   Manolo Likes!  Click!

Manolo the Columnist

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

Dear Manolo,

I’m a small town girl with big time dreams, who has just been given the job of a lifetime. The next eight weeks will be super demanding and I’ll be in the limelight a lot. All of my friends say I have a sort “sexy librarian” vibe. What would you recommend to make me seem a little more sophisticated and polished?


Manolo says, congratulations on your recent success, clearly you are the woman to be reckoned with!

It is always the same with the small town girls who make it big; on the one of the hands, you wish to give yourself the making over so as to seem more fashionable, while on the other of the hands you do not want to lose that refreshing American naturalness which others recognize as the heart of your charm.

In the other words, how to be more Catherine Deneuve without sinking your Molly Brown.

Naturally, the Manolo suggests starting with the shoes. You must shed those pedestrian, low quality shoes and move up market with something truly super fantastic.

Look, here is the Karolina in black patent from Kate Spade, both super fantastic and all American!

Karolina by Kate Spade    Manolo Likes!  Click!

Manolo the Columnist

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

Dear Manolo,

Now that the summer is almost over can you give us your opinion of wearing white shoes after Labor Day.


Manolo says, every year at this time the Manolo feels like Punxsutawney Phil, the cute little Pennsylvania goundhog, who must each February emerge from his burrow and announce whether or not the winter will continue.

Likewise, at the end of each summer, the festive crowds gather on the boulevards in front of the Manolo’s pied-à-terre, waiting for the Manolo to emerge, boutonnière in place, walking stick in hand, to opine on the suitability of white feetwear after the Day of Labor.

And, each year, the Manolo gives the same response to the gathered throngs, “Yes, the thousand times, yes! You may wear the white shoes even into the fall.”

And, each year, the Manolo gives the same justification, that whether or not one wears white shoes is entirely about suitability. If the weather is still warm, and your outfit would benefit from beautiful white shoes, then you should wear them.

Look, here is the Zudora from the Donald J. Pliner, the white and black peep-toe pump that could look smashing well into the autumn.

Zudora from Donald J. Pliner     Manolo Likes!  Click!