If the Shoe Fits

Recently I asked a friend if $700 shoes (and $800 shoes and $1200 shoes) really feel different than $300 shoes.  We had a brief, yet believable, exchange about quality and longevity.  A few days later, pouring over Oliver Messel’s design of Rayne’s Shoe Shop I thought, “This was a place that girl would dig.”

Shelves and pedistals, mirror and silk, this was a shrine to shoes cloaked by a “Shop” with no “pe.”  This was one side of one room.  There were rooms.  This is the sort of spot, like the couture section at Hall’s, where my foot would never cross the threshold.

Later that day I received an email from a friend who sends me pictures of houses he likes with subject lines like, “Yes. This,” and no other text.  The latest contained a link to a post at The Selby with a brown-that-was-supposed-to-be-red chair and this.  A modern day version of Rayne’s for one’s very own.  A cabinet so lovely that she just might become vain, but who keeps her head as she has such a serious job to do.

This jazzy cabinet belongs to Brooke Cundiff (Director of Merchandise at Park and Bond) and her husband, Michael Hainey (who is just about everything – writer, artist and deputy editor of GQ.)  And the chic grosgrain ribbon on this convoluted shoe box?  This pithy quote at the end of the post that I just might treasure more than a pair of Louboutins:

Image, top, from Oliver Messel: In the Theatre of Design, edited by Thomas Messel, Rizzoli, New York from the Victoria and Albert Museum, Theatre and Performance Collection.  Image, next, via the Selby.

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11 thoughts on “If the Shoe Fits

  1. The blogs I like the best have written articles that are consistent in their reporting, or original ideas. Well said,Michael!!!!I am lusting after that cabinet. Keep the shoes!!1

  2. Now what is reporting? The who what where when and why? or is it verifying a fact with corroboration ?? attribution vs an editiorial/opinion however- most read blogs as entertainment. If one is a serious blogger how does one attain credibility ??? is it the goodwill of a larger entity –a Food channel/HG channel discovers you and catapults you to stardom???

  3. I think reporting on a blog is all of those thing – fact gathering and opinion and attribution. All of these things seem relevant to entertainment as well, I think. Personally, I don't find what amounts to a google search of, say, ikat pillows either reporting or entertainment, but I suppose that is personal. I'm not sure I could define "serious blogger," but I think the qualities you referenced – fact gathering, opinion and attribution – would be a part of it. With blogging a personal element seems to be key. The goodwill of a larger entity is irrelevant to me – and absent from the majority of the blogs I read. Largely, that type of endorsement or partnership has a lot to do with numbers, which is not necessarily an indication of good content.

  4. Agree with you Mrs. B and would add that as a designer, most of us have plenty of sources for professional reports and reference material. This is apples and oranges. I would prefer for reporters at say, the Washington Post, to deliver the facts- detailed, balanced, careful, and exhaustively researched. I read design related blogs because I am interested in the point of view of the blogger. Credibility in this comes from having something intelligent, creative and interesting to say.

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