Centerpieced by a rotating praxinoscope, an early animation device, Christian Louboutin showcased both his spring ’19 collection and a series of special one-off pieces crafted in his Paris atelier.
As the show drew inspiration from movement, optical illusion and the vibrantly colored kinetic art of Julio Le Parc, nothing was quite as it might seem at first glance. Colored spots, beads and tuxedo-style bowties appeared to float on the foot thanks to backdrops of transparent PVC, while discs of color seemed suspended in clear lucite heels.
Graffiti prints looked three-dimensional beneath glossy PVC, and if you looked closely at the printed mesh on a sandal, you’d see depictions of writhing naked bodies. Elsewhere, graphic black and white stripes and cutouts played havoc with the viewer’s perception, while a new line of sneakers promised to get you moving for real.
The designer has extended his popular nudes collection with two brand new silhouettes: lace-up Perspex and ribbon heels, and flat brogues. The heeled sandals cinch the ankles with ribbons, finished with hand-dyed ostrich feathers. The brogues feature a trompe l’oeil overlay of jewel-festooned Louboutin red toes wearing a diamante thong. Both styles come in seven shades designed to give the illusion of longer legs whatever the color of one’s skin.
The one-off special order styles took things to the next level and offered a glimpse into the lives and whims of the label’s elite private clients. Body boots came sequin-spattered and graffiti-printed, while fishnet tights/boots were set with spikes at the calf. These segued into studs above the knee, lest the wearer do themselves a mischief.
The most beautiful creation, though, was a 130-millimeter heeled pump. Done in matte alligator, it featured oversize, hand-sculpted spikes shooting like flames from the rear. They were hand-painted in gold leaf and inlaid with strass in a process that took some five days. Price on application.