Lady: A Woman’s Right to Shoes

By Jo Phillips

“Give a woman the right shoe and she can conquer the world”- Marilyn Monroe.

We have all heard of this iconic quote, and i’m sure most of us certainly do agree! Shoes are incredibly important to us, whatever style, shape or material.

Shoes have nowadays become objects of desire, of fantasy, tools of torment and torture. They are rich in legend and mythology and even used in literature. Shoes are not just a standard item of clothing anymore. They have taken the spotlight in both tales of Cinderella and the Wizard of Oz, representing romance, death, hope and so much more. Psychologically, Freud even heightens the importance of shoes in society. Freud’s sexual fetishism theory highlights shoes are a sexual object of fetishism and a symbol of female genitalia. This exemplifies the sheer social and psychological power of shoes.

As we have mentioned in a previous article, shoes have been the centre of exhibitions in London and the world! In addition to the V&A’s exhibition on Pain and Pleasure available to the public until 31st January 2016, another exhibition is currently happening in the Design museum; Life on Foot. This exhibition allows you to embark on a creative journey into how traditional shoemaking has been shaped by contemporary design and new technologies. Life on Foot is the first exhibition on the maverick and Spanish footwear brand Camper, and is showing until 1st November 2015.

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Not only have shoes been worshiped in exhibitions, but they have also graced the covers and content of books. Isabelle Thomas released a paperback book in May 2015 called Paris street style: Shoes. This bestselling book explores the significance of the shoe as a fashion icon and its deeply French origions, providing expert advice on the selection and upkeep of footwear.

The world of shoes is very bizzare, wonderful and utterly inspirational. Keeping in tone with this, PUTPUT has released their very own collection by taking high heels to new heights! Stephan Friedli and Ulrik Martin Larsen have been working together under PUTPUT since 2011. The duo uses ordinary objects such as candles and paper bags and even hair to construct playful high heels, galoshes and other trendy footwear for their project Everything Has a Sole.

Screen Shot 2015-10-26 at 15.07.22It is truly fascinating how we relate to objects in their everyday uses, and why some objects mean more to us than others. Particularly shoes are objects that are widely collected and desired. They are something we fetishise, and through that process they have become almost living beings with souls and emotions. From there it only takes a small and elegant typo to arrive to PUTPUT‘s campaign slogan: Everything Has a Sole.

Screen Shot 2015-10-26 at 15.08.13Playful constructions, transient in their nature, definitely transform the ordinary into the extraordinary and PUTPUT has focused on the idea of combining visual art and fashion to create an undeniable edge.

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For more information on PUTPUT‘s Everything Has a Sole project please visit their website.

“My designs are like love letters from one shoe lover to another” – Minna Parikka. This shoe designer has been nothing but passionate about women’s shoes from the tender age of 15. Fun and bold – that’s Minna’s trademark – both as a woman, and a designer. Season after season, her creations win followers with their playful femininity, eccentricity, and exquisite attention to craftsmanship. Minna’s love of footwear is based on the fact that shoes – unlike clothes – don’t have to be inhabited by a body in order to look attractive. When they’re beautiful in their own right, and a then a woman steps into them – that’s when the magic happens. The right shoes can change how she looks, feels and is seen by others. As objects of desire for women and men, shoes aren’t just symbols of power – they’re the Holy Grail.

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Her unusual, unique designs have been hit the fashion world by storm. The new Spring/Summer 2016 collection is called ‘hard toys’ and it includes shoe designs inspired by bunnies, pandas, and even Miss Daffy Duck herself! The bunny idea has been a favourite in Minna‘s collections over the years, and the idea of using nature and animal themes in her designs in a humorous and cartoon-y way is simply iconic to say the least. 

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For more information on Minna Parikka‘s shoes please visit

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It is evident shoes are very much apart of our society and there are endless amounts of designers eager to show off their creations. The image above shows off six different designers, from left to right: Alexander White‘s ‘Anna’ tan suede, Jeffrey Campbel‘s new collection, Jimmy Choo‘s Viola 110, Rupert Sanderson‘s Little Gem, Louboutin‘s classic Decollete 554, and Manolo Blahnik‘s Hangisi 100mm Satin Pump in Cobalt Blue.

Alexander White‘s luxury shoe brand was founded in 2014 and offers elegant and chic shoes with a playful, youthful twist. White’s Spring Summer 2016 Collection is specifically inspired by a series of black and white photographs shown below by Ruven Afandor. The photographer’s amazing use of light and the ability to capture the essence of his subjects is what specifically captivated White‘s imagination.

Screen Shot 2015-10-22 at 18.12.52This season’s intricately designed collection by Alexander White reveals new materials including mesh and metallic leathers with striking tones of fuchsia, cerulean blue, tan, nude, animal print and pale grey used throughout.

For more information on this collection please visit

In addition to this, American shoe brand Jeffrey Campbell‘s collection has proven to be a massive hit in the UK with their vintage style and runway flair combination. Jeffrey Campbell has created a line of shoes instantly recognisable all over  the world. “Outrageous style”- This has been what the brand has taken pride in through their love of spikes, studs, and glitter- along with their variety of shape, wild material and unique designs. Jeffrey Campbell shoes are recognised not just as footwear, but works of art – they take a simple trendy shoe and multiply it by 10! The meteoric rise of the Jeffrey Campbell brand in the last decade is nothing short of amazing. The range is currently available in 49 countries and is still on the rise.

For more information, or to purchase your very own Jeffrey Campbell shoes please visit 

The iconic Jimmy Choo is a 21st century luxury accessories brand, with shoes at its heart, offering an empowered sense of glamour and a playfully daring spirit. The sexy cut, fashionable design, and exceptional Italian craftsmanship struck a chord with a sophisticated clientele. This high class shoe designer has graced the covers of many high fashion magazines, as well as been worn by countless celebrities. The beautiful autumn/winter collection is now being presented on the website for us all to devour. 

For more information on Jimmy Choo please visit

Rupert Sanderson creations of beautiful sexy shoes for women derives from not only a deep feeling for fashion but a love of making beautiful, luxurious objects; that are considered fashionable. The coterie of glamorous and famous woman around he world that wear Rupert Sanderson‘s shoes is testament and a compliment to the combination of how beautiful his shoes undoubtedly are and the attention he dedicates to these important and inspirational women.

For more information on Rupert Sanderson please visit

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Red bottoms. Now, I’m sure we all know which designer I’m talking about! These iconic shoes have been at the forefront of the shoe world for many years, and most of us strive to have our very own pair of red bottoms (if you haven’t already!). Christian Louboutin, an iconic designer, has even created shoes for Royalty, Princess Diana. And recently he has released his very own Channel 4 documentary on his creative process of designing these exquisite shoes. Although Louboutin‘s classics have been extremely popular, he has also designed a Fetish collection which is more for stature than comfort. I think we can all agree we are on the edge of our seats waiting for Christian Louboutin‘s next masterpiece.

For more information on Louboutins please visit

Of course, how could we discuss shoes without mentioning the fabulous Manolo Blahnik! A Sex and The City favourite and the shoes which Carrie Bradshaw finally married her Mr Big in. The Manolo Blahnik line has earned its high status; the distinctively sexy and sophisticaled heel on a Manolo Blahnik shoe is instantly recognisable. You could even argue that Blahnik is directly responsible for modern women’s obsession with footwear, which has certainly continued on to today. In the words of Carrie Bradshaw when being faced with being robbed “Please sir, you can take my Fendi baguette, you can take my ring and my watch, but don’t take my Manolo Blahniks!”

For more information on the classic Manolo Blahnik please visit

Well, there you have it ladies, we all have a right to shoes so make sure you shoes wisely!

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