The fact that Christian Louboutin began his career at the age of 16 designing shoes for the Folies-Bergere should tell you a lot about the sensibilities of this red-hot shoe designer. The fact that his hero is fellow Parisian Roger Vivier, whose sculptural high heels have graced the feet of everyone from Josephine Baker to Catherine Deneuve, should tell you everything else.
The Follies account for Louboutin’s sense of showmanship, whether it’s a gold-plated leather and leopard-print sandal or a thigh-high deerskin boot. As for Vivier, he was a master not just of shape but of texture, too, which may help explain why Louboutin enjoys working with materials as varied as python and Lucite.
But for all these influences, Louboutin’s high heels, mules, boots, and sandals are uniquely his own, the most obvious example being his practice of painting the soles of his shoes nail-polish red, no matter what the upper looks like. Indeed, this single device almost sums up the Louboutin aesthetic—brash, surprising, and undeniably eye catching.
After his introduction to fashion from a costumer’s perspective, Louboutin worked for Charles Jourdan and Yves Saint Laurent. He opened his own boutique in Paris in 1991 and today has shops in major cities around the world.
A good pair of Louboutins often makes Manolo Blahnik’s creations look like sensible Oxfords. Sure he does ballet flats, but Louboutin’s are dyed in purple, red, or yellow, after which they are covered with spikes. When Louboutin conjures a “safari shoe,” he sees a stiletto skinned in snake.
Want a Louboutin Mary Jane? Be prepared for a pump in multi-hued canvas with a 5-inch heel and an open toe. And his short boots are secured to the foot with all manner of straps that variously resemble bondage devices or slender seat belts.
Louboutin shoes excel at unusual combinations of materials, such as fishnet paired with patent leather. Like nature, Louboutin abhors a vacuum, which may explain why a pair of pu...
Heels, too, get the Louboutin treatment. Chunky ones are carved and painted gold, curved ones are meant to mirror the lines of a woman’s body. Up front, below the toes and ball of the foot, Louboutin frequently hides modest, flat platforms, making his 5-inch heels a bit more manageable. Even the lowly espadrille gets a Louboutin makeover—his versions feature uppers of lilac ribbon, tanned leather, or floral prints, with ropey platform wedges below.
Naturally people who make their living based on the impression they create are drawn to Louboutin shoes. J-Lo, who has a self-professed weakness for his heels, recorded a hit single called “Louboutins” that describes a woman leaving an unworthy boyfriend, not in slippers and a veil of tears but defiantly in 5-inch heels.
Fergie of the Black Eyed Peas is similarly fond of her Louboutins—she has been photographed countless times strutting the stage in her silver, above-the-knee Louboutin Supra Fifre boots, whose heel height rivals J-Lo’s. This is footwear that projects power and independence, although it’s a safe bet that the hip-hop diva has someone to help her with each boot’s 21 hooks.
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Gatecrasher: Christian Louboutin's flagship store opens in Collins StreetSydney Morning Herald, May 23rd
Soul to sole in Collins Street. Christian Louboutin flagship boutique opening, Collins Street. (From left): Andrew MacDonald and Kelly McDougall at St Kilda Film Festival opening night at the Palais Theatre. Photo: Shaney Balcombe. What is found...Read more
Christian Louboutin opens Flagship store in MelbourneDaily Mail, May 21st
Esteemed shoe designer Christian Louboutin's new Australian flagship store opened in Melbourne on Wednesday, to the delight of local fans of the iconic red sole. Demi Harman, Catriona Rowntree, and Chyka Keebaugh were among the guests who ...Read more
Create A Christian Louboutin Manicure In 6 Steps That Are Wayyyy More ...Bustle, May 20th
As any true Christian Louboutin stiletto devotee knows, the devil is in the details. Almost a decade after the designer painted his heels with crimson varnish, the storied polish has inspired an eponymous nail varnish collection by the designer, and...Read more
Christian Louboutin Releases Fall '15 Lookbook ImagesFootwear News, May 20th
Christian Louboutin has released its fall '15 lookbook imagery, which features the designer's signature red-soled shoes on the gym court. From men's double-monk sneakers to women's strappy sandals, Louboutin's designs are seen in unusually athletic ...Read more
Jennifer Lopez's Billboard Awards Shoes: Christian LouboutinFootwear News, May 17th
American Idol host, and pop star, Jennifer Lopez stunned on the BBMAs red carpet in a barely there Charbel Zoe floor length gown paired with Christian Louboutin pointy-toe 'So Kate' pumps in white python. It's really no surprise the star opted for...Read more
Shoe lover recreates Christian Louboutin heels for just $40Daily Mail, May 15th
Instead of shelling out $6,000 for a pair of flashy Christian Louboutin heels, one crafty shoe lover has taken 'do it yourself' to the next level by creating her own pair of knockoffs featuring the same rhinestone embellishments – and the brand's...Read more
Scenes From the 'Glorious' Christian Louboutin Sample Sale: A VIP Spills AllRacked NY, May 14th
That elusive Christian Louboutin sample sale is really and truly happening this week, and an anonymous tipster who shopped yesterday via an employee invite shared all the details with us last night—and in her own words, "it was glorious." Yesterday ...Read more
Louboutin Back In CourtVogue.co.uk, May 12th
CHRISTIAN LOUBOUTIN is heading back to court in the hope of protecting his famous red soles once and for all. The designer - who battled Yves Saint Laurent in court in New York over the issue in 2012 and currently holds a valid US trademark as a result ...Read more