The wrong shoe

Gucci SS24 show

What’s the deal with fugly shoes? I thought they were a post-ironic anomaly, but no, the aesthetically displeasing Uggs, Crocs and Bottega-style Puddle boots are clearly sticking around.

Back in the day, a Margiela Tabi boot was seriously avant-garde and the perfect foil to your minimalist Lang/Demeulemeester/Sander little black suit. Now it’s a whole sub-franchise netting hefty sales for loyal retailers.

The #NewGucci SS24 show led by Sabato De Sarno garnered mixed reactions – some saying it was too minimalist or too derivative of past designers. My main gripe however was the shoes – horrendous clumpy flatform loafers killing the vibe of the otherwise sleek luxury patent leather pencil skirts and cashmere sweaters (below). But now I realise, that was the whole point.

Gucci ss24 flatform loafers
Gucci ss24 flatform loafers

Allison Bornstein’s book, Wear It Well comes out soon and one of her styling philosophies is ‘the wrong shoe’, The idea that by wearing an off kilter or inappropriate shoe with your outfit, you “push your look into a more interesting place”.  So leaving aside that the models were clearly struggling to walk in those stacked Guccis, there’s something to be said for adding an ugly detail to your discreet luxury fit. And let’s not forget, that Gucci has been here (many times) before. The Tom Ford clog*, the Alessandro furry mule* (below) …

Gucci furry loafers mules 2015

Ugh, why mules though? They’re my biggest footwear bugbear, drawing attention to bulbous, parmesan-skinned heels and impossible to run in. Is that the point? Prada’s SS24 collection was also big on mules; satin triangle-heeled ones in electric pink (below) and chartreuse. However, I do sheepishly confess to an – unworn – pair of 1990s Prada lip-print mules under the bed in my ‘archive’ (below). And I did rather warm to the audaciousness of the Alessandro Michele-era Gucci furry mule and those early gender-nonconformist collections.

Prada mules SS24
Prada lip print mules Y2K

Anyway, as I said in my AW23 trend report, if quiet luxury is to last more than a season, we’ll need some ways to fuck it up so to speak (i.e., make it look interesting, not basic) and good news for luxury megabrands – quirky accessories are just the way to do that. So, whether I like it or not, I’m bracing myself for the onslaught of wrong shoes, bad flatforms and unwalkable mules.

WORDS: Disneyrollergirl / Navaz Batliwalla
IMAGES:  Gucci x 4; Prada; Prada/Disneyrollergirl
NOTE: Most images are digitally enhanced. Some posts use affiliate links* and PR samples. Please read my privacy and cookies policy here

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