RIP Zaha Hadid

zaha hadid for united nude
Hadid/United Nude Launch

Architecture and shoe design lost a great one this past week – RIP Zaha Hadid. As we see somewhat often, architects understand how to make shoes. In 2013 Hadid and United Nude creative director, Rem Koolhaas produced a wonderfully sculptural, chromed collaboration dubbed the NOVA. Shown as the art pieces they are, the launch rightly presented them in museum exhibition mode, under glass.

 

Zaha Hadid for United Nude
Zaha Hadid for United Nude up close

According to the United Nude website, “the revolutionary design of the NOVA shoe combines innovative materialization and ergonomic considerations with the dynamism of [her] unmistakable architectural language to convey an inherent sense of movement…[she] has developed an innovative cantilevered system that allows the staggering 16cm (6.25 in) heel to appear completely unsupported.”

 

An innovator and futurist, she leaves the world a more interesting place.

Works of Art in Leather

Moreschi The Italian Art of Shoemaking Works of Art in Leather book coverEye candy – works of art in leather. It’s arrived. Thank you Amazon Prime. Welcome to my bookshelf – Moreschi The Italian Art of Shoemaking: Works of Art in Leather, edited by Cristina Morrozi, photographed by Giò Martorana and produced by Rizzoli.  This book traces the heritage of artisan culture & craft in Italian shoe production using the premiere brand, Moreschi as a model. Known for exacting standards and unique style, Moreschi produces every pair of shoes from design stage to retailer on-site. Breathtakingly beautiful for your coffee table. Instructive for the shoe purist.

 

Shoe Pop at International Pop

shoe pop Delila doble plataforma 1967
Delila doble plataforma 1967

Shoe Pop at the Philadelphia Museum of Art’s new exhibit, International Pop.

There’s not much fashion included, but this display sure does make a statement. Created by Argentinian artist, Dalila Puzzovio in 1967 as a reaction to the lack of response to trends in Argentinian Fashion, these colorful shoes were an avante-garde, contemporary couture contrast to the usual (at the time) black and brown styles of the day. The award winning sculpture was displayed in the windows of Argentinian shoe chain, Grimoldi, the perfect foil for blurring the lines between mass-production and Art.

These baby are certainly part of the shoe vernacular today.

International Pop February 24, 2016 – May 15, 2016

 

 

SOS – Save our Soles or Souls

The footwear industry can be environmentally damaging, enter SOS (Save our Soles), a design consultancy that merges tradition practice with technology to provide innovative and creative footwear. Masterminded by visionary, Ridhwana Shaik, this consultancy promises passionate design, conceptualization and sustainable manufacture and offers limited quantity, great quality, and uniquely African aesthetic.

SOS fold
SOS fold
SOS - MonkyNutz
SOS – MonkyNutz

Some projects include: MonkyNutz, a uni-sex kids range that is eco-friendly, created from organic cotton and recycled shoes; SOS fold ups made from 100% African cotton and recycled soles; and the Meshuga brand that provides wood soles from the scavenged wood of Jacaranda tree combined with leather by products from the meat industry that are veg-tanned used as uppers.

SOS - Meshuga
SOS – Meshuga

Most of all I like the tag line: “Leave behind a legacy of great footwear, not a landfill of wasted shoes.” A great thought for today or any day.

Black Patent Crazy

Black Patent go go
Black Patent go go

I am black patent crazy. Over the past year I’ve purchased 4 pairs of black patent boots to add to my collection bringing my total to 5. Why you ask? Black patent is one of the most versatile shoe materials ever. It adds a bit of shine to any daytime outfit and glamor to any evening or special occasion attire. It works well in all weather needing just a quick wipe down with a damp cloth and mild soap if necessary.  Scuffs and scratches can be removed with special purpose cleaners on the market. Over time, it may loose the high shine, but it will maintain an interesting rubbery look. This black patent go go, Cynira at ShoeDazzle is on point at about $39 for VIPs.

True patent leather starts with a fine grain leather that is coated to create a glossy finish. Imitations are poromeric imitation leathers like Dupont’s Corfam. Whether you choose real or imitation you can’t go wrong with this addition to your wardrobe.

Here is an excellent choice for Men:

Converse Men's Black Patent
Converse Men’s Black Patent

As my friend Phil Silverstone says, “Just bought these amazing Converse high top black patent sneaks for an upcoming tux event and then to wear with my white Levi’s in the summer…”

 

 

And some for Women:

Black Patent Chelsea
Black Patent Chelsea Vince Camuto $180ish on sale Worn at the Breeder’s Cup
Punk Patent
Punk Patent Penny Loves Kenny $40ish
Black Patent & Perspex Chelsea boot
Black Patent & Perspex Chelsea boot Rachel Zoe $150ish on sale