A new exhibition at the University of California, Davis, is bringing what the world puts on its feet up to eye level. The UC Davis Design Museum’s current show, “Stepping Out,” features shoes from across the globe and from bygone eras. The event was researched and curated with the help of university students, including Nora Cary. “Shoes do more than complete the perfect outfit,” Cary said in a statement. “All shoes have something important to tell us, whether it is about function, fashion or folk life.” The exhibition includes footwear from places as diverse as Iran, India and the U.S., and will be on display through July 12. Justin Fenner
If women can step up into sky-high heels, why can’t men add an inch or two to their height? California-based LiftKits offers an affordable and immediate way to make a man a tad taller through its height-enhancing shoe insoles. The product comes in two versions: the Hi-Top, which adds as much as 2 inches in height, and the Lo-Top, offering 1 inch of boost. The creators claim that in addition to adding height, the inserts can improve a wearer’s confidence and even their posture. LiftKits are sold online at Myliftkits.com, priced at $20 for the Lo-Tops and $25 for the Hi-Tops. They also will be available for wholesale purchase in late 2009. J.F.
Me & Hue
It’s no secret that a great pair of shoes enhances a woman’s appearance. But Trove Tkees, a new line of flip-flops from the creators of apparel company Trove & Co., goes one step further by billing itself as “cosmetics for your feet.” The Foundation collection comes in several skin-tone nudes, with thin leather straps that give the illusion of longer legs. The Highlighter offering, like it’s counterpart, adds a touch of shimmer to the feet, while the matte Liner looks add graphic style to your silhouette. But founders Jesse Burnett and Carly Mandelbaum aren’t stopping there. More footwear offerings are in the works, in shadows, lipsticks, blushes, glosses and creams. Trove Tkees are priced at $46 and are available at Tkees.com. Meghan Cass
Window to the Web
Canadian department store Holt Renfrew is tuned in to the tech craze. The nine-store chain was set to unveil its newest window display last week, saluting the creativity and influence of fashion bloggers. Though details about the windows were being kept under wraps at press time, Holts’ creative director, John Gerhardt, took inspiration from top bloggers, including The Sartorialist’s Scott Schuman (at right), Bryan Boy of Bryanboy.com, Tommy Ton of Jakandjil.com and Jane Aldridge of Seaofshoes.com (above). Footwear News also learned that the displays will have an interactive component. At the Toronto flagship store, a 24-hour interactive screen will allow the public to vote for a contestant to be Holt Renfrew’s first in-house blogger and “contemporary correspondent.” M.C.