Customize, Customize!

Walk a mile in your own shoes.

Zoom

I believe it was Henry David Thoreau who first assembled two of the same verbs and separated them by commas and a conclusive exclamation point to make an untrammeled point with the conviction of a snowball that is New York City bound: “Simplify, simplify!”

Today, I borrow this template. But my remark is imbued with the implications of how integral customization has become to the human experience.

I was at a mandatory assembly in high school the first time it occurred to me. The principle of my school, a rabbi, started to speak. “iPod, iMac, i This, i That,” he said in that inflection indigenous to religious Jewish men. “We’re becoming too invested in appeasing just ourselves.”

I understood that his ultimate point was to stand against the paradigm’s highly selfish changing trajectory and harken back to one of the most salient totems of Judaism: love thy neighbor as you love thyself (presumably as opposed to as you love your iPod) but the deduction I left with was quite simply: customize, customize.

It was the future of commerce.

The most valuable things we were coming to own were those that we could manipulate to reflect who we were, loading iPods with music that appealed only to our auditory senses, and iMacs with files which were important for us but likely irrelevant for everyone else. Then there came the iPhone and the iPad and the…“i This and i That,” altruism be damned!, and now, here come the shoes, which, if you think about it, make perfect sense.

We have proved ourselves as a culture ruled by the pursuit of that which is limited edition or exclusive or on the brink of selling out perennially, and why? Because we want to be commended for our individualism. To separate ourselves. To feel customized, like we’ve tailor-made tangible experiences that apply only to ourselves.

cyDKCr on Make A Gif, Animated Gifs

This is where Stuart Weitzman (the shoemaker, not the Jewish version of the literary mouse) comes in.

Last week, the brand launched a shoe-customization program titled SWxYOU. It will run until March 14th and allows participants to put their stamp of individualism on a classic single strap sandal called The Nudist in a selection of twelve different colors that after the 14th will no longer be available for consumption. The process is incredibly simple in that you select your heel height (four and half inches or two and three quarters — the world is your oyster and you are its faceted pearl) and then your limited edition color. After that, you pick your size, your width and depending on how you’re feeling, either check out or continue shopping.

They say you shouldn’t judge a person until you’ve walked a mile in their shoes but who’s to say a pair of shoes actually belongs to anyone if they haven’t been tailor-made? Especially with a silhouette so unassuming you’re effectively entitled to wear as many patterns as you’d like, the least you can do is really — and I mean really — make the shoes your own.

YOU MAY ALSO LIKE

Thoughts?
  • http://stylecontext.com/ Style Context

    best idea ever? yep.

    http://stylecontext.com

  • Michelle

    I need that jacket! Where did you find it?!

  • http://www.malindaknowles.net/ Malinda Frances Knowles

    i know your feet had to be cold!

    http://www.malindaknowles.net

  • Guest

    No outfit credits???? I looove that sweater and jacket!

    • Leandra Medine

      Spoiler alert: I’m not wearing a sweater! It’s a scarf wrapped around my upper half

  • Elizabeth Hawn

    love this idea! i want some

    http://www.atlantastateofmind.blogspot.com

  • Peak 25

    Such a fantastic idea! Gorgeous shoes!

    http://www.peak25.com

  • http://facebook.com/mrsmakimusic Mia Darrow Tarley

    How do you do the socks with sandals? My socks always get all bunchy and awkward, but not in a good way.

  • Sophie

    Mmm good point… maybe a trip over to Weitzman’s website is in order!

    Sophie x

    http://your-girl-is-lovely.blogspot.co.uk

  • pippi longstocking

    Love your jeans!!!!! Where can I find them?

    • Leandra Medine

      Hey! they are Junya Watanabe (sorry I didn’t specify in post) – http://bit.ly/1mrgpeo

  • StyleNonsense

    Noooo way, this sounds like an amaxing idea, hate when a shoe is either too low in heel height or not in a colour I’d like!

    http://www.StyleNonsense.com

  • monkeyshines
  • alliekat

    You’ve been able to do this with Blahniks forever though, with more heel heights and more colors…..although, the hologram and lace print were pretty cool

    http://www.neimanmarcus.com/Manolo-Blahnik/The-Made-to-Order-BB-Boutique/cat47330748/c.cat

  • theperennialstyle

    WOW! That is such an exciting idea – I definitely plan on customizing a pair for myself!

  • http://www.Bodil-Lois.com/ Bodil Loïs Huisman

    The model of the sandals is great; would love to customize them!

  • Lele

    Okay I’ll be the first to say fuck these pants for a) being so expensive and b) being sold out. Life of an average person

  • Alaxandra Rutella

    Okay yes the shoes are perfect and an insanely iconic idea. But let’s just talk about that coat for a second…. Gaspppppp

  • Ali Kat

    I know this is about shoes, but those jeans are amazeballs.

  • Reece Andavolgyi

    NOW I GOTTA GO OUT AND BUY SALT N PEPPER SOCKS AND WEAR THEM WITH GOLD SANDALS. bam.

    reece
    http://blackberriesandsparkles.blogspot.com/

  • Stephanie

    Very very dangerous post!! “Hi, my name is Stephanie and I am a shoe addict..”

    -Stephanie

    @LaminLouboutins.com

  • Lucy Korn

    Not to take away from these pretty creations but you guys should all check out ‘Shoes of Prey’ it’s an australian website where you can completely customize your shoes. Type, height, colour, fabric, everything! Tis great.

  • Allanah

    there is an Australian site with international shipping called ‘shoes of prey’, you can choose so much more including widths and decorations

  • Jen

    NEED THAT JACKET!!!!!!

  • Hanneke

    I love the whole idea of customizing. I think I’m going to customize my jeans like that Junya Watanabe jeans, love it ever since I saw it on Taylor Tomasi Hill. xo Hanneke
    Check out my style on http://www.hannekeverstegen.com

  • Chloe H

    I keep staring at the fringe on the jeans, it’s so fun!
    Customization is fun biz, who doesn’t like something to label as their “own?”

  • Marin

    Wait. This is essentially a shoe that comes in three more colors than usual. I don’t git it.