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October 9, 2012

Are these the scariest shoes ever?


From Shine:



We've seen many ugly shoes in our day, but a new pair dubbed "Scary Beautiful" [above and below] is definitely the most treacherous footwear we've laid eyes on. The massive heels appear backwards on the foot, so the wearer's feet point straight down the back, as if in ballet shoes, with their shin leaning against the front "heel" end of the design to balance. The shoes are a collaboration between artist Leanie van der Vyver and Dutch shoe designer René Van den berg and serve as a commentary on today's impossible standards of beauty.


Van der Vyver is South African and recently graduated from the Gerrit Rietveld Academie in Amsterdam.


"After working in fashion for seven years, and therefore being well aware of the manipulation images in fashion suffer for a perfect result, I still compare myself to them and other current beauty ideals," said Van der Vyver. "My frustration with my own inability to overcome these feelings of inadequacy was what brought 'Scary Beautiful' into fruition. The shoes formed part of my graduation project that was a result of my thesis. The conclusion of my thesis investigation was that people are not satisfied with what they look like, and that perfection, according to the beauty and fashion standards, has reached a climax. Humans are playing God by physically and metaphorically perfecting themselves. Beauty is currently at an all time-climax, allowing this project to explore what lies beyond perfection. 'Scary Beautiful' challenges current beauty ideals by inflicting an unexpected new beauty standard."

We find the video shocking but also oddly moving. The shoes are obviously not practical, but as art they're intriguing. We can't help but be reminded of Lady Gaga trying to steady herself in the now-famous Alexander McQueen "Armadillo" heels in her "Bad Romance" music video. Major models like Abbey Lee Kershaw, Natasha Poly, and Sasha Pivovarova reportedly refused to wear the 12-inch McQueen heels out of fear, and were cut from the designer's spring 2010 fashion show. In comparison, the "Scary Beautiful" shoes make the "Armadillo" heels look like sneakers, but we had a feeling the always-outdoing-herself Lady Gaga would give them a spin one day. Sure enough, Van der Vyver confirmed our suspicions.

"Yes, on request I did actually send them to Studio Formichetti for a Lady Gaga music video, but I could not get confirmation whether she actually used them," Van der Vyver told us. "I did not charge her to possibly use them."


[video from Lyall Coburn; link to Shine via Joe Peach]

October 9, 2012 at 08:31 PM | Permalink


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6.02*10^23 - Some of my best friends are 4'8". Only one would agree with you.

Posted by: Becs | Oct 16, 2012 4:56:28 PM

If she kept the bent-over walk and put on one of those Duckbill Dog Muzzles, that could make a great Halloween bird costume - some kind of strange waterfowl. Except their knees bend the other way, don't they? Maybe she could walk backwards or something.

Posted by: Flautist | Oct 10, 2012 3:33:19 PM

She's missed the point. She should stand upright in them, a la ballet dancer en pointe, rather than lean forward granny-style as she's doing.

I imagine no one will add them to their wardrobe or even to their want list. They are sheer fantasy.

Posted by: Kay | Oct 10, 2012 1:23:04 PM

I just want to see the bloopers and outtakes from this video. And no, shoes are not scary. Apparently, shoe designers are scary.

Posted by: Marcheline | Oct 10, 2012 6:21:02 AM

This reminds me of the joke that ends with the punchline "Poor man! But what a nice suit!"

Posted by: Becs | Oct 10, 2012 5:18:19 AM

silly shoes that are somewhat degrading as it forces a woman to hobble around - i do like the minimalist dress however with the delicate necklace that appears to loop down through the waist belt and dangle below

Posted by: sherlock | Oct 10, 2012 2:22:59 AM

4'8" is never fun.

Posted by: 6.02*10^23 | Oct 10, 2012 1:55:34 AM

Drat! Missed the pizza man again!!!

Posted by: rob | Oct 9, 2012 10:44:43 PM

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