The ’90s are enjoying a major moment in fashion lately, which makes the announcement of a TV reboot of the 1995 teen classic “Clueless” feel right on time. According to Deadline, the show is in the works at CBS TV Studios and will feature some of the original movie cast, with a plot line that has best friend Dionne stepping into Cher Horowitz’s most-popular shoes after the lead character disappears.
Though the new iteration is expected to take place in L.A. circa 2020, we can still expect to see plenty of ’90s-era looks, from double denim to square-toe shoes.
But there’s another ’90s shoe silhouette set to be totally buggin’ and that’s the clog. In the original “Clueless,” Cher tells her father, “I broke in my purple clogs,” when asked what she had done at school that day. It’s a line the reveals just how ubiquitous the shoe style was at the time. With ’90s nostalgia reaching its peak, could the clog become an “It” shoe once again?
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The ’90s were all over the runways for spring ’20, and the clog made its first appearance at New York Fashion Week in September when Kate Spade, a brand with its roots in the ’90s, debuted a collaboration with Dr. Scholl’s, sending patterned and brightly colored versions of the classic, wood-soled Original Exercise Sandal down its garden runway. There were also more directional mono-blocked wooden platforms at Eckhaus Latta. The trend gained ground in Milan with Marni’s paint-daubed soles. But it was in Paris where the clog really started to gel as a top trend for the season.
Roger Vivier, By Far Shoes, Fabrizio Viti, La Double J and Dice Kayek all showed chunky, wooden soles. The Roger Vivier “Viv” clog came with the house’s signature crystal-embellished buckle and uppers done in a whimsical printed grosgrain or poppy patent leathers. They are, in creative director Gherardo Felloni’s words, “really light and young for a summer of love.”
In contrast, By Far went for a typically spare, fuss-free take in tune with the label’s aesthetic.
Not so for La DoubleJ. Founder J.J. Martin teamed up with Fabrizio Viti on a footwear capsule for which clogs came in printed canvas or leather to match the ready-to-wear. “We always work in degrees of maximalism,” said Martin, “so while there’s our minimal clog with daisy prints on canvas, you’ve also got the maximal versions with crystal daisies and all the feathers.” The silhouettes came from existing ones in Viti’s collection, with a little extra bedazzling.
Turkish label Dice Kayek did soaring, nearly 6-inch versions with cork soles and exaggerated studding. “Even though they’re so high, I still find them very comfortable,” said co-founder Ece Ege. “They’re the perfect style to combine with our long dress silhouettes; I wanted to give them height without looking too feminine.”
But rather than the ’90s, Ege was actually thinking more 19th century. Inspiration was a combination of the oriental babouche slipper with the platforms traditionally worn in the Turkish hammam, she said. “You had water constantly jetting out from natural springs, so there was always a few centimeters of it on the ground. People wore [babouches] to keep their feet dry.”
Whatever the inspiration, we can already hear the wooden clomps of spring ’20 just around the corner.
Kate Spade clogs, New York Fashion Week, spring ’20.