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 pumps with blocky clear Perspex heels are embedded with hydrangea petals, or why the Lucite soles or some of his creations are stuffed with suspended rose petals.
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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Chanel, Christian Louboutin Top List of Most Popular Fashion Brands on PinterestFashionista, May 22nd
A new study ranks the leading fashion brands on Pinterest. And while rankings of brands on social media platforms are pretty common–this one is interesting because the brands themselves don't really have much to do with their presence, since on...Read more
Harrods Welcomes The Christian Louboutin Boutique To Its FamilystupidDOPE.com, May 21st
Upscale department store Harrods is pushing it to the limit with its latest addition. Shoe mogul Christian Louboutin has found a home at the high end department store. The boutique will only sell Louboutin products including handbags. The store bleeds...Read more
Celebrity Double Take: Carey Mulligan Rewears Her Lanvin LookPeople Magazine, May 20th
Mulligan first wore this Lanvin suit (featuring an off-white tuxedo jacket, silk pants and a matching top) and Christian Louboutin “Miyousra” heels at a Good Morning America appearance on May 1. RELATED PHOTOS: See what everyone else is wearing to...Read more
Lee Broom Designs New Christian Louboutin Store at HarrodsDexigner, May 19th
"It has been an honour to design the new store for Christian Louboutin in Harrods," Broom commented. "I have always been a huge admirer of his work and I am delighted to be designing this space in one of the most famous department stores in the world...Read more
Inside Louboutin's New London HomeVogue.com, May 17th
CHRISTIAN LOUBOUTIN has opened a dedicated shoe haven in Harrods, offering exclusive new styles. The label's new London home - created by designer Lee Broome - is an homage to some of London's most beautiful landmarks, while still encapsulating...Read more
Lee Broom designs the new Christian Louboutin boutique in Harrods, Londonwallpaper.com, May 16th
Designer Lee Broom has created a drama-filled new store concept for Christian Louboutin. Following in the footsteps of other Christian Louboutin boutiques around the world that are designed to reflect the city in which they are located, Broom's...Read more
Stars who lose, steal or destroy borrowed designer dresses, $1100 Christian ...Entertainment Weekly, May 1st
Leaked photos show a kale-print sneaker with the name Christian Louboutin carved into the (green!) sole and a shoe box bearing both the Louboutin and Whole Foods logos. [NY Prowler]. Trophies, championship rings, jerseys, and more memorabilia from...Read more
The Christian Louboutin Sample Sale Starts in Two WeeksRacked NY (blog), April 29th
Unless you receive an invite from Christian Louboutin, gaining access to their heavenly shoe closet will be extremely difficult. But if there is a silver lining to this story, it's that I said "nearly impossible." From anecdotes heard here and there, I...Read more