To Buy or DIY?

Answer me that, folks.


I saw this photo on 5 Inch and Up, a blog scribed by London-based Sandra Hegalstam, last week. Initially, I thought: wow, those shoes are awesome. Almost instantaneously I thought, but I could definitely make them myself. And then I realized that this was precisely the reaction I had at the end of last week when I celebrated Moo Piyasombatkul’s sunglasses collection, Moo. This in turn got me thinking about what will happen to the artistry of fashion. If we can all do it, why should we buy it? But if we don’t buy it, do designers go out of business? And if designers go out of business, where do we seek our inspiration?

In a New York Times article that was published last November, an opinions writer dubbed our generation, The Entrepreneurial Generation. While the writer mentions that we’ve earned the title because various social vehicles have allowed us to become our own businesses–we are constantly selling ourselves–I got to thinking about the implications involved with becoming the Generation in question.

On the one hand, we may have become so spoiled by the access we are constantly granted–I once heard a man refer to himself as the CEO of his twitter account–anything less than self-employment in a world as vast as the web can be rendered almost comical. On the other hand though, this access is what enables a man to say something as seemingly silly as “I’m the CEO of my twitter account,” and mean it. Ultimately, it’s not that silly; look at White Girl Problems, look at Shit My Dad Says, look at the entire range of Shit x Says that came afterward, and on a more marginal level, look at me.

Three years ago, I was a junior in college studying to become a journalist. Now, I’m a full time blogger–a profession I would have rolled my eyes at, mocked, dubbed ludicrous for the sake of “real” writers like Mailer and Didion while I was studying to become one of them. They are likely quite glad I left their trade untainted but the fact of the matter is, this truly is the era of the entrepreneur. We are all, whether consciously or not, doing something, running something, thinking something unique to who we are as individuals and putting it out into the world.

It is at this point that I fear the over-stimulation coming from virtually every angle–see: Pinterest, Twitter, Tumblr, Instagram, blogs, and the apps that allow us to aggregate our different networks and consume them more seamlessly will pollute the way we think. Do we even still think? There are so many digital road blocks filtering our thoughts, it’s hard to recognize an unedited opinion anymore. Which brings me back to my point about the shoes photographed above.

Notwithstanding the consideration that they are ASOS-crafted, which means potentially designed in bulk for mass consumption, they still reflect the creative endeavors of an individual, with a job, trying to “make it.” They are playful and interesting, precisely the character shoes should possess. In matters of the self-inflicted small business though: do we, for the sake of recognizing the above, buy, or on the same note, DIY? (Image via)

Get more Brain Massage ?
  • Fashiioncarpet

    Spotted them too at Asos and fell in love…I’m not sure like you, it’s so simple to DIY 😉 
    Maybe i will try it 

  • K Corbridge

    More of these posts MR! You’re makin’ me think and I’m likin’ it!

  • Anniewear

    it’s definitely not a bad decision to diy them, cause there are so many other things we are buying. if I had the money to buy all the things I like I wouldnt know what to do, so I am glad my bank account makes this decision for me haha. but anyway, this is such a great piece to diy and don’t forget how freakin awesome it feels to wear something that is diy, doesn’t it?

  • My Scrambled Style

    Already spotted them, and i love them. DIY is simple for some people i think, but not for me. I think when i make these shoes myself i lose a pom pom at every step i take :-S.


  • Mary-Alice Bowman

    I think the danger of over stimulation via the internet has been a risk for a long time, and as we derive inspiration through it, it’s important to step back into real, day-to-day life (harder to do if you work at home) to give yourself a healthy perspective.

    Very thoughtful post! And, in my opinion, designers are in no danger of the DIY trends overtaking them. It’s fun, but most people prefer buying the name. I, personally, would DIY if I liked the style enough.

    Visit my blog at:


  • Mel

    Interesting thoughts there about the The Entrepreneurial Generation. This may in fact be the article mentioned..

  • Kate

    such a great post, but to cut to the chase and answer your question.. I would have to buy, because I suck at diy;) 
    I know not very insightful, but the truth:)xx Kate 

  • venicakalambay

    A Veeeery Thought Provoking Post, I Am Too Unsure If Designers Will Stay In Business If We All Began To Create For Ourselves, However There Would Still Be A Demand For Luxury Items Such As Couture Gowns.

  • If I can afford and find in my size, I will buy (these fall into that).  If the piece in question is many seasons past or I can’t find my size anywhere I may DIY.  But I like to support where I can.

  • charlie

    no way, saw them yesterday on and thought of you !!

  • Eva Kraaijeveld

    They are gorgeous but I would say, try a DIY 😉

  • I don’t think I’m artistic enough to DIY most of the time… Which actually suits me fine because I like to support originality when I can – however easily faked.

  • Liz

    These are awesome! 

    check out my blog!

  • marinacasapu
  • I’d definitely DIY these shoes.. but that’s just me.. why? all though I don’t know how much they cost, I do know I have to watch my spendings, and besides, I’m a fashion designers so I tend to make most of my clothes, alter them, renew them and of course DIY as well.. so I like to add my personal touch to things.
    But if I were someone else, I don’t think fashion designers will go out of work if we all start DIYs… not everything can be easily DIY-ed..and not everyone does them either.. most people are too lazy and preffer to buy while others can afford to buy anything at any cost, so kudos for them too.
    Besides, wouldn’t this concern be the same thing in other type of businesses like restaurants?… should housewives avoid home-made cooking just to prevent restaurants and chefs going out of business? I don’t think they’ll stop cooking just for the sake of cuisiniers; the same way I don’t think these will go out of jobs.. unless of course they suck at it. 
    I give a lot of credit to people that do their own things instead of buying them, it ‘s creative and thrifty.. but not all of us do it.. I think designers will not go out of business due to DIYs.. they will go if they make things people won’t want to buy… meanwhile, the inspiration will certainly last.. I don’t think art can ever end.

  • Alisa
  • Em [pushups with polish]

    DIY DIY DIY all day, errrr day. 

  • Rosanna

    TO DIE!

  • allory

     I love this post. On the subject of thinking- I’d have to say the answer is unfortunately no- we don’t really think.  Too often do people read something online and without thinking, believe it, reblog it, and share it with the world.  We have so many choices and so many opinions at our disposal that it’s become unnecessary to actually formulate our own.

    That said, I don’t think it’s a perfect analogy with the shoes.  I mean I LOVE those shoes- and you’re right I could make them myself.  And in a perfect analogy, buying the shoes would be reblogging without thinking, but making the shoes exactly as is wouldn’t be much better- it would kind of just be plagiarism.  That said, getting inspired by the shoes, adapting them to my own sensibilities, and creating something similar with my own style- that’s worth the effort.

    • Very true, can I RT you in these comments? RT “We have so many choices and so many opinions at our disposal that it’s become unnecessary to actually formulate our own.”

  • HopeBW

    Your best post yet!

  • Delfina Savoretti

    Pretty interesting artcile you wrote, i’m gonna think abput it tonight when I go to sleep.

    On the other hand, those sandals are the perfect candidates for DIY, I don’t believe in paying a lot for something massive and with a lack of uniqueness and design!

    Love this blog!

  • I love them and definitely think in this case they should be a buy and not a DIY – they are in fact probably just as cheap to buy anyway.  Interesting ponderings though…

    ♥ ThankFifi

  • Cristina

    I think the answer is simply to do both. I like to buy pieces that often inspire a DIY at a later date. I wouldn’t worry about DIY projects putting designers out of business, especially the big box companies. The majority of the population would still just rather buy everything themselves either because it’s more convenient or because not everyone is really so great at crafting things. It takes skill to make these pieces, so it’s also going t take some skill to recreate them. I would personally rather see more small businesses and more people making things for themselves, but I just don’t think the world is ready for that. 

  • Elisa

    Agree with your comment on over-stimulation. Inspiration is potentially everywhere and sometimes it’s overwhelming and I don’t know what I like anymore.

    Wandering Minds fashion

  • looks like Asos diy-ed these shoes themselves. They are BCBG Max Azria underneath the sicilian horse-cart decoration. 10% different and it’s your design? haha 

  • monkeyshines

    gorgeous pair!


  • Kim

    Interesting! I like your new article approach on some topics. Can’t hold back the journalist in you 🙂

  • Cynthia Ratto

    the best piece of writing you’ve had on this blog yet. honesty injected with personality.

  • buy or dyi, I guess you just had lots to say. Go girl. You own it!

    dress giveaway on my blog

  • Me Gusta o No Me Gusta

    I had the exact same thought! Even more: I saved this picture on my DIY board on Pinterest!
    Now you should do a step by step post.
    Lots of love from Argentina!

  • Thanks for taking the time to put together a post with some real talking points. Been giving all of this a lot of though recently (As an unemployed graduate, I have the time). It’s interesting you say that “We are all, whether consciously or not, doing something, running something, thinking something unique to who we are as individuals”, because it’s, true, I think we are all unique in some way – it’s just the skill for finding how to exploit that special quirk for monetary gain that most of us (obviously not yourself) lack. I sang and danced and made weird blackworthy quality videos myself, but I don’t have 50 trillion people watching me do so. Why? You tell me. 

    Anyhow. I don’t think “inspiration” should have to come from designers. Obviously it does, but they get most of their ideas from other sources of inspiration, so I don’t think a little originality in terms of where we source our creativity would be a bad thing. I hope everyone becomes their own “designer” and we don’t have to rely on overpriced and underthought ideas from fashion moguls to allow us to express ourselves. Or even to set the standard for how we should express ourselves. 



  • Such an insightful post. I often think about how our generation functions in comparison to others. We’re often dubbed as having lost the ability to communicate, but I feel like that’s all we do. Between all of the various social media platforms, texting, an iphone constantly at the ready, it’s endless. It will be interesting to see if we continue this our entire lives, or whether we are taken over by a younger generation, as we mutter about our ‘good ‘ol days’ spent on pinterest. As for the shoes I’d give them a DIY. The hand-made movement spreads the creativity from the design houses/high street to the masses. 

  • VotreAmie

    Def DIY. Gives you a little more control to make them a little more personalized

  • Hannah

    I loved this post (as someone who just finished her junior year studying journalism). Insightful thoughts and pom pom craft balls fit together perfectly

  • Great post!  I am artistically challenged and can’t DIY anything so I always err on the side of caution and buy… but completely agree about “our” generation (I’m 30 and stuck in between Gen X and Y so I’ll adopt your generation for the time being… the internet and social media have definitely impacted how we think and our world view in general.  I am after all CEO of my life, and my twitter account… and my blog….

  • nataluya85

    diy would be easy and fun i think!


  • Bonnie, Clyde + Marni
  • Very thought-provoking (see, you’re writing a blog, and yet you can still influence us to think)… And while I agree that we are the Entrepreneurial Generation,  I still think there are plenty of people willing to buy over DIY because there are those who actually can’t make it themselves. It’s also precisely the “accessibility” of ideas through technology that enables designers to get ideas from what we are creating or talking about, and then turn it into something we probably can’t create at home. So could it be a cycle rather than an either/or scenario?

    Really enjoying your writing, even if you don’t claim to be a journalist!


  • “It’s hard to recognize an unedited opinion anymore.” Very interesting

    I’ve been thinking about the business of DIY for a while now. Just last week I was speaking to an associate about a seamstress who could/would whip up a particular Stella McCartney SP 2012 black/white “look alike” dress for half the price…DIY or knockoff? Fine Line. I would love to hear your thoughts on this.

  • Becky

    So true. All of it. The integration of fashion and our ever changing and consuming world of new technologies is something we talk about all the time, but never in this specific way. Ultimately, you could DIY- but that would require time and focus. Focus that can be obscured by a million other, seemingly more important things in our lives, that just provokes us to consume instead of taking the time out to be slightly inconvenienced into going to a craft store. It’s a cycle, I know I’ve bought things I could’ve easily made hundreds of times out of pure, lazy convenience. I’ve ranted for far too long here. 
    …Great post!

  • Bri Wang

    Those are amazing!
    Personally, I’d buy. I know if I tried to DIY those it would just look like multicolored warts growing on my shoes.



  • I’m all about supporting brands, not buying anything knock off etcetera, but this is all good and well if you have the money to do so. If not, like me and most students my age, fashion is more limited in access, especially if you would ban DIY. So for economically more challenged individuals, I think DIY might be a great alternative. It’s never completely the same as the original, and you have to put some more effort into it, but you can get the great piece you wanted without going for knock-offs. Off course not everythinh is DIY-prone, so of those thing you can only dream and lust for 😉
    All these lyrics to say: nice shoes! buy or DIY, whatever you feel like doing, but get those babies on your feet! x,Natalie

  • Théa Unknown

    To DIY, more personal!

    Théa Unknown

  • Just wanted to pop by and say I really loved this blog post. It’s a great point of view. Thanks for sharing.

  • Crafting is always better! 


    I say DIY and then I´ll copy that from you ;P hahaha.


  • Vicky TheGoldenBun

    Absolutely love them. Wanted to buy them to! TAKE TAKE TAKE!


    The Golden Bun | new post | follow me

  • I guess the dilemma between buying and DIYing always takes us to the road of thought economist David Ricardo has opened for us: comparative advantages, or, “will doing this myself — instead of purchasing it from someone who does it better than me — be actually worth it?”. So if one is a college student, or the CEO of one´s own twitter account, DIY should be the choice; if one is the CEO of an actual business, such as one of the 18 females who are present at the Fortune 500 list this year (18! among 500! and that´s a record), one should definitely buy.

    On an entirely different note, I think our entrepreneurial generation is actually generating too much noise, as well as interesting contents, services and projects; when everyone has access to everything, I guess that sort of excess is bound to occur… What happens is, I believe, the consumer has now a harder time choosing among his options — they are not so prepped and packed for us as they used to be, when only a few expensive publicity vehicles were available and actually being able to afford publicity was already a filter for prospective buyers. And well, having a lot to choose from can be a good or a bad thing. Depends mostly on who´s choosing.

    Great post as always, you are an excellent writer, very resourceful, and I believe you should try a side project in literature if  you still feel bugged by your admiration for Mailer.

    Nice pair o´shoes, by the way. 🙂

  • siguuu

    I purchased them after seeing them on the blog, but to be honest, they look waaay better in those pics then in reality, plus, they are extremely painful – not worth such money – DIY!!!

  • SCOUT fanzine

    Lovely shoes!

  • Alice

    I think being an intrepeneur in the sense of having a blog or online shop gives you great oppurtunities ( example:you). BUT I was always opposed to popularity sites like pinterest and tumblr. Thats not showing the world who you are as an individual, it is pondering upon the question if you get enough reblogs.

  • Gail Taylor

    It has to be a little of both for me. I do not always have the time or the $ to shop, even if it is shopping on the Internet, because I am too busy being the CEO of my life!

  • Beckerman Girls

    Man, that’s a tricky one…..I think buy them!!!! Because it looks trickier than it really is to make! But, you could always try the pom pom idea all over a hat or trims on gloves…that might be fun to wear WITH the shoes!!!!
    kisses and love u major L!xoThe Beckerman

  • Beautiful kicks!

  • The most difficult part i think is not to DIY everything you see -just trying to personalize, reinterpret one idea or style. I go for this idea, there are unfortunately too much copy, and obviously, only less thoughts to create something different.

    Virginie / Style Reload

  • Flavy

    More of these posts!

  • Oppositelipstick
  • Gizel Maimon

    I think we’re reaching a point when there will be a natural selection and only the strong will survive being it blogs, applications, print magazines. We will soon reach an information  saturation point.  
    Re: creativity and DIY – The apparent large number of craftists among us is an illusion, the creatives are still a small percentage of humanity – most people who appreciate hand craft will not actually get their hands dirty. It is true there is a revival of arts and crafts and DYI but I suspect it’s only a reaction to the mass production and uniformization of fashion since the invention of pret-a-porter.
    The new entrepreneurs? The new areas of entrepreneurship? Great! Let them shake the world of ideas,  fashion, design and communication markets! Again only a few will survive but they’re thinking, trying and [re]inventing.
    Don’t you worry you have style and you can think too – you’re making the natural selection:)

  • Seekingstyleblog

    I’ve never thought of it that way before! Very interesting….

    xo Jennifer

  • Wow, this is deep girl.  I say Do It Yourself, your way, all the way, always putting your spin on things!  

  • Emily

    Because we have everything we tend to buy. People who don’t have everything/are poor, are more creative and make their own things. They are also much more creative and maybe even are able to think more as they try to always come up with new ways to build and make something. The Western world is very lazy and busy; they go to the shops, see something they like and buy it. Don’t even think so much about it. And after a while, after they’ve worn it maybe 1-3 times, they forget this “super awesome” buy they “had to have” and look out for the next thing, something new and fresh. Bbut someone who creates something and puts lot of time and effort into doing so, probably never parts with this item. Or after many years and much use.

    Of course some fashion bloggers/people in the Western world do DIY, but that’s just a few. For the most of us it’s easier to just buy something.

    I could continue talking, but I’ll stop now 😉 The shoes are fun, saw them on Sandra’s blog as well 😀
    Emily ooo



  • Tlaif

    Love this post MR. Who knew bloggers (and girls who went to Yeshiva nonetheless, like me) could be this philosophical? Love it. Check out my posts on 

  • Ulrike

    the best I have read on your blog, really really good! Reminded me of this: which is rocking my world view right now as I am about to begin my masters

  • Blaastyle

    I won’t write down a comment about it cause my english is too poor to give my opinion on it. I’d rather do it in French. Anyways, it is a very striking article you’ve done here. It’s great how you think deep into one subject starting from sth which was very basic: how about DIY?  It’s always a pleasure reading your blog. x Romi

  • I love to DIY things but only when I would want changes to the original design – say I like a coffee table I saw online, but I’d prefer it to be endtable height.  I think there is still something to be said for the simple admiration and support of other people’s hard work.

  • a.n.a.l.u

    Such a great post. Mass-media is attacking us constantly and as you said, we don`t know exactly wich are our own thoughts and how much are influenced by all the things we see. After all is a perfect moment for freedom of speech, say what you want to say and express yourself freely, there is always going to be somebody to hear and debate. And about the shoes, i definitly gonna DIY them!


  • Heather Chester

    I just started checking out your blog.  You’re a really good writer … a pleasant surprise in this world of blogs.  

  • Andrea

    If I had any talent into crafts, perhaps I would try a DYI. Since I am awful and would most likely finish with my fingers glued to each other, or the pompoms glued to my feet, I must say I am a believer in specialising (a very XX century notion) and leave it to the pro’s.

  • To DIY!




  • Nahidnoori1

    This was an excellent post. L O V E 


  • Nuit Hernandez

    i suck at DIYing. So….. if they are not crazy expensive. I say: buy.

  • I’m all for DIY because I do not see it as knocking off a designer but instead being inspired by a designer.  But, maybe that is because whenever I try to DIY an item I end up taking it another direction and not faithfully copying the original…

  • everyone loves those shoes 😀 i don´t really like them 😀


    I would DIY things that look like its a DIY but there are some items that you just shouldn’t DIY. 

  • Shannon Lauritsen

    trying to delete a duplicate comment! whoops! ignore!

  • inraggedwoods

    Those shoes ARE fantastic.  The wonderful thing about a shoe like that is it is not necessarily a trend – it’s wild and certainly not considered classic, but I wouldn’t think the look a “trend” either.  You could probably have this shoe in your closet from now until your 100 years old and still pull it out a few times a year and rock it hard.  Maybe it’s actually like a… classic wild card?  For this reason (and the others you mentioned, which I totally agree with), I’d like to say buck up, Buttercup, and just buy the shoes.  BUT… I think the true deciding factor (for me) lies within the quality of the shoe.  If one night hitting the sidewalk is going to leave you a few pompoms short of a shoe, you may as well just get creative and make them yourself!

  • Nancy McGinley

    I would DIY – they’d be so fun to make and I’d feel so satisfied with myself!  I do understand what you are saying, though.  I have a shop on Etsy and I’ve seen other Etsy sellers feeling sad and disappointed when they see one of their items pinned on Pinterest and it’s pinned to a “DIY” board.

    I’ll keep in mind that not everyone is confident in their craftiness.  Lots of people will buy instead of DIY.

  • Mallory Lee

    I think a valid realization is to consider the age of “The Entrepreneurial Generation.” These people are young professionals and students, right? Juxtapose this age group with their income, and consider (ah, yes, I’m going to say it) the economy. We’ve been forced to create because it is cheaper (for the most part). Just like with The Great Depression, people are making things to save a little dough. And also like the Great Depression, people turn to DIYing: cooking from scratch, making repairs on their homes, and gardening to name a few examples. If you can afford it then why not buy it?

     I also think the “to DIY” or “not to DIY” comes down to a matter of ethics with the specific designer or product. I’m not saying I put as much thought into this, but what I should be doing, is research. Are the materials from the United States? Was the product made in our nation? I think that by buying these American products, we can stimulate the economy. Fashion is one of the biggest industries. A lot of designers are thinking twice before outsourcing, but others would rather ship it off and help out another person’s economy. If it’s outsourced, why not make it yourself? If it’s a little more expensive because the designer has focused on making in-house fashion, then buy it. You are doing a responsible thing — the more we buy a pom-pom ball shoes made in the U.S. by U.S. the more jobs we can create here. 

    Ah, yes. I’d say we still think! Great article. You’re a real journalists’ blogger — I can say that as a journalist who wishes she had your fashion blog. 

  • Aryncarz

    Such a thought-evoking post. I agree that this generation has provided us with so many ideas that we don’t think as much as in the past, thus halting our creative growth. 

    You are an incredible writer…I could read essays like this every day! Keep up the awesome work. 

  • They are oddly appealing! I would say buy but then I think, how and where would I wear them to justify the purchase? But a diy could go horribly, unappealingly wrong. But they are fun, and with shoes and purses I say live a little! I have to say buy!

  • Marz

    Hey guys! Check out my blog? 
    It’s mainly essays I could use some feedback 

  • Camilla

    I think DIY fashion is great!

    However I struggle with the integrity of DIY blogs simply because they directly take looks from the runway and pieces from designer collections and use it as ‘inspiration’ to recreate.

    I think the worse thing is that whilst DIY blogs are gaining popularity for ‘recreating’ they are essentially stealing another persons hard work and ideas for the benefit, and sometimes commercial benefit, of their blog.

    Still, the issue of borrowing, copying or stealing another design is certainly not a new one.

  • Ali

    fantastic post. 

  • Ayb

    I think we had kitchen curtains with those pom-poms on them.  I’ve always been a big fan of the pom-pom.

    Once or twice a year I fall victim to the ‘I can make that!’ trap.  Truth is, you CANNOT compete with cheap foreign labor.  No.  You cannot do it.  And you are not as creative as your brain might lead you to believe.

    Love MR!  I try to be as repellant as possible, but have been told my Kim-K-esq hips make that impossible.  Sigh . . . .

    Now I must send my friends an email plaintively BEGGING for donations to help me buy the shoes pictured.

    Can I sigh twice in a comment?

  • Natalia

    Great post and lovely shoes!


  • If you really like them and you think you can DIY, go for it! You will like them even more, at least I am like that. And don’t worry about the designers, not everyone likes DIY and not everyone is talented. Another issue is the time, not everyone has time to make their own stuff, that’s why we buy ready made of everything.
    Also as another reader point it out in a comment, there will be plenty of stuff to buy, that you cannot do!  Remember in the past times, women were staying  home, so they had time for sewing, cutting etc but not anymore. Also as another reader point it out in a comment, there will be plenty of stuff to buy from them! Hope this help. Nice of  you for thinking to others, bu the way, most of us do it less. 

  • Danniela Riquelme Zumaeta

    I really enjoyed reading your post, I found very interesting the vision about this generation, there are so many influences on the Internet that you feel you can do anything, even though, I think there will always be people who can’t do it by themselves, so the market will always have designers and new original things, I personally don’t buy anything I think I can do, I think it’s something about likes.

    Love your blog!


  • kirbybee

    I’ve been sitting here for the past twenty minutes reading and re-reading this post and the so called ‘Entrepreneurial Generation’ has really struck a cord with me.
    I tend to agree with the thinking that everybody seems to be running their own ‘business’ these days, just not everyone is actually selling a tangible product.
    However the fashion industry as a whole ain’t going anywhere, because at the end of the day you can DIY to your hearts content but unless your sewing abilities rival that of a couture atelier, Chanel will always be Chanel and Dior will always be Dior.
    And lets be honest, the high street retailers have been ripping off designers since time began. And lets be even more honest, that whole arts and crafts movement that popped up on the runways over the last few years, surely that is in part inspired by the DIY culture, the very culture that has given rise to folks like your good self looking at a picture of a pair of shoes and thinking I can totally do that myself!
    So the question isn’t to DIY or not, the real question is why haven’t you, in keeping with your generation, started your own shoe business??

  • I’ve been thinking of all this for a while too, especially since i’ve become openly social network addict… This alleged twitter account CEO’s quote is certainly a good one to remember to make sure we keep our feet grounded.

  • Hanneke

    I saw them yesterday also at another blog. Thought about buying them or making them myself, so funny! xo Hanneke

    Check out this DIY:

  • tanya_caines

    These are the same as the Isabel Marant jeans which I have seen so many exact DIY tutorials that rip them off completely. I believe if you want the real thing then you buy them. DIYing something and ripping it off completely is something I hate doing. DIYing should be someones own ideas, sure take these as inspiration but add something to it to make them your own. Only China copy things exactly. I love these shoes and although I probably cant afford them I would be embarrassed to wear an exact DIY copy. Its a sad fact that someday all these brilliant designers will some day not be around cause people just copy and mass produce. Also there is NOTHING worse than spending alot of cash on a designer piece only to have some shit kmart brand rip it off and sell the same thing for a quarter of the price so it looks like you own the cheaper piece cause no one knows better.

  • More of these posts!

  • More of these posts! The answer is diy!

  • Isabeau

    EVERYONE IS COPYING EVERYONE! Thats just a fact! Let’s look at history:
    Thousends of years ago the Romans were very “inspired” by the Greeks and they in turn the Sumer etc. Even designers are masters of this craft! For example lets take Chloé’s famous Susan boots…STOLEN from Versace!
    But what could really legitimate your act of getting “inspired” is that High-Street Companies are copying BLOGGERS! Last time seen on Love Aesthetics Facebook page. She’s great in doing DIY. And this highstreet online monster called Nelly is selling a cheap version of her transparent chokers (entry 31. july) 
    Or what about Betty or Alix Our dear Zara just stole a picture off their blog, alienated it and put it on T-Shirt – without asking nor crediting! How must have Betty felt to see a T-Shirt with herself on it? Quite shocking right?
    So, dear Manrepeller go ahead with your intentions! And if god calls you a copy-cat on Judgment Day (I know your Jewish but just in case…) tell him what I told you.

  • Katie
  • I think that worse than the DIY, is DIY after watching someone’s tutorial on D said object Y for free, and then selling it for a load of cash to less savvy and gullible internet folk.

    I think there’s nothing wrong with DIY when the original ones are out of 90% of the people’s price range, but I think there’s everything wrong with stealing someone else’s ingenuity and making money out of it.


    DIY!!! You just can do 2 cuffs and fix them on every kind of sandal you like (and even change to another) and you have a guarantee that those sandals are good fitting and comfortable (high risk that those ASOS ones won´t be).

  • Joey

    You can def DIY something with pom poms and not worry because that is no brainer. But most other things you can’t DIY so I think designers are totally safe too.

  • Joey

    And even if you do DIY them, you will have to buy a pair of shoes as a base so….

  • Silvia_citterio

    girl I’m happy you consider these shoes playful and interesting, beacause I bought them last week, I’m waiting for theme in my post! I’m not good on DIY, so…

  • The Provoker

     um.. DIY? these shoes are totes ma repelling! Oh I’m doing my first ever giveaway which is an Alexander McQueen silk-chiffon skull print scarf, check it out.

    xx nathan.niche


  • I would love to see your DIY shoes ! But i have to recognize that it looks not that difficult !

  • Alexa_schomaecker

    already ordered those shoes. unfortunatly they’re not just unconfortable, but il-designed.
    eventhough I’m used to wear heels it was already hard to stand on those!
    Sadly sent them back 🙁

  • Damaris Chamorro

    Great post! I love how you write! Keep it on

  • Kathryn

    You know, I think about this often. As an obsessive subscriber to the New Yorker but also as a regular Facebooker, I wonder about what draws our attention, how long it can hold our attention and at what cost. Truthfully, I’ll likely never wear anything that you post here BUT it is your wit, humor and composition (and near-perfect grammar) that keep me coming back. Elitist? Possibly. But in a world of push and pull from here to there in less than a second, it’s no wonder that your (and part of my) generation has become ridiculously creative. I don’t think it matters that these entrepreneurs are on the internet; it’s just another medium. If anything, we have seen a constant drive to DIY and local, which ultimately helps create community. Is this a belated response to the individualism that was wrought immediately after the second World War? Who knows? The cost of critical analysis (and vetting sources and information) at the expense of THIS! THAT! THE OTHER! is still being played out. Regardless, I admire your innovative approach to critically engaging a materialistic world. (And for the record, I never check anything on the internet on the weekends. It gives me time to think for myself.)  🙂

  • Seamayde Lilac

    Maybe precisely because this is the Age of Overstimulation, ahem, it would be better to DIY anything you can. Not only because it would save costs, and I am not even sure that it would, but more so to get one’s hands dirty, and in the clay, and messing around with real products and textures and raw materials. The process may get one’s creative juices flowing and lead to a masterpiece or it may end up in glue-gun disaster, but the result might actually be a better appreciation of actually original and well-made stuff. Which is educational, and a better-educated consumer usually means better products… Besides, how many of us have an idea what it takes to *make* a shoe? How many of us had ever tried sewing on more than a button or a ripped seam, let alone know what it takes to make fabric? I don’t think DIY will put designers out of business, frankly, but it might make the whole relationship more vibrant and interesting. 

    Thanks for bringing this up though – made me think. 🙂

  • meat ya face

    DIY, all the way baby. No question! 

  • I just spoke on a conference about this last week. I actually think the spirit of DIY is what makes a shoe like this even sellable. And take tie dye. Everyone knows how to od it, but its the spirit of DIY that has brought it back into fashion. Same with friendship bracelets- DIY being so popular has allowed every J Crew (etc) to jam their counters with $10 bracelets… and trust me, people buy them. Even though they could make them. 

    The spirit of creativity is good for business…. for everyone I think. 

    There is also a limit to what people can really DIY- so I dont think any major retailers should really worry. I worry more about the little etsy designers and DIYers that are ripped off by the retailers. 

    Anyway…. until recently, all human beings had to make things for themself, and now I think we are seeing a backlash toward the over industrialized, computerized world we live in… I think people want to reconnect with the art of using their hands to make things. Just look at cooking… after the age of microwaving everything came the resurgence of gourmet, artisianal foods. I think crafting is just a natural part of the human spirit and its only now that we are calling it DIY. 

    Anyway…. Miss you kid! 

  • Labellaiman

    You make a good point! Will DIY take money away from this shoe designer? It’s a angle I never looked set before. Most of us are trying to make it, and if it were something I created I just might feel some kind of way about DIYers! However, depending on my prices I know everyone can’t afford certain things, but want to look the part… In that case, what the hell? Ahh torn in between the two .

  • DIY!!! That would be super easy and super sick.

  • Archie Henderson

    What a very interesting thing to write about. I love your reference to the “Entrepreneurial Generation.” This  post had really made me think and I would love to see more like it. Keep up the good work girlfriend!

  • “Modern art = I could do that + Yeah, but you didn’t.” -Craig Damrauer 
    Love this post! Perfectly relevant to my very thoughts as of late. I actually think it would be healthier if more people tried to DIY. In an age of information overload, it’s easy to see something and say, “I can do that.” Actually making something, or recreating something, I would hope, makes people more appreciative of the craft behind an object. There’s an interesting book  called ‘The Toaster Project,’ where Thomas Thwaites, sets out to replicate a basic toaster from scratch. Long story short, it took nine month and thousands of dollars. In a culture of mass consumption, it’s easy to forget the intricacies and complexities of our everyday products.

    Oddly enough, I don’t believe ASOS makes their cash off of mass consumption, per se. It appears they follow a long tail business model whereby aggregate sales of a large number of niche products creates a steady revenue stream (Chris Anderson, I’d like to give the designers at ASOS the benefit of the doubt, but chances are, many of their ‘ideas’ probably come from smaller, lesser known designers to begin with! 

  • the coattail effect

    DIY definitely. I got plenty of fuzz-balls with no where to go…

  • Diy!

  • Definitely a DIY – you still have to buy the basic shoe so no worries if the designers will be bankrupt. But hey, if you chosse the solution B, promise to make a guide. Please.

  • The Chic

    I don’t like it too much, so I think I’m not going to buy and not to diy, haha 🙂 
    Here I write to you my handmade shop direction, maybe you’ll be interested in buy something 🙂

  • The idea of a CEO whose only job is to develop a comedy sketch that gets monetized with a book deal that’s ultimately headed for an Urban Outfitters bargain bin is an interesting one, as it marks a definite shift in the responsibilities typically associated with the post. At best, social media provides people with catchy ideas the chance to profit from them in a very specific time frame. Make a Shit_x_Says video now and it’ll get 1/3 the views it would’ve gotten when those were actually popular. Maybe. Is the definition of a CEO literally changing, or, as you write here, are we questioning and thinking less about the weight of the terms we use to describe work in an internet economy? I think a truly successful CEO will be the lady/gent who sees the potential in these fleeting, trendy memes and videos and can produce them, without fail, again and again – or get together a talent roster that can do it for them.

    There was also an article in the Times about the “curation” that new social media platforms encourage – and the fact that it isn’t really that. We’re provided these opportunities to edit content and share our perspectives, but the platforms also encourage us to share without thinking or editing since posts are easily deleted (though never for good – this seems to happen a lot on Twitter). I think a lot of people who have a particularly successful “curation board” Tumblr or Pinterest account can’t know all of the factors that went in to making their “work” a success. And it could change at any second! “Running something” online is still too recent an occupation for me to believe in it, despite the meteoric successes of a select few (who have capitalized on their success quickly and offline.) Really great topic for a post, I’m intrigued to broach the subject on my own blog!  

  • I was at in the store of a modern art gallery the other day and they were selling these funny posters that said “I could do that – Yeah, but you didn’t.” I thought that was interesting. Love this post.

  • bambam

    at first i thought u should DIY (on instagram) but now its true u could have saved your money for something else. . .

  • sarah walters

    Great post. I had read this NYTimes article that you mentioned and thought it too relevant, as I have been making things my entire life and am constantly trying to see how I will make this interest into something bigger.  I recognize myself as part of this Entrepreneurial Generation.

    I think you touched on something very important in that, we all want to offer something original, that is why we blog, pin, tweet, make things, … etc.  But, there is the flip side to what we do being accessible to a lot of people and perhaps spawning our success, and that is, through these connections and our aggregated consumption, we could begin to sound like everyone else, and our ideas may no longer be original. 

    After thinking about this for a while, and doing a little bit of reading, I have two thoughts.  One, is that the “over-stimulus” has the potential to help us grow and spark our imagination, like living in New York City and bumping shoulders with other artists can inspires us.  Personally, being a creative person, but not an overtly social person, these channels of connection that we talk about have been intimidating for me, but because I think that they have value, I’m learning to appreciate and use them.  Secondly, I read an interview a while ago (magazine, I don’t remember) with Stefano Pilati (while he was at YSL), when asked, “How can you be original today?”, he answered, “You are original in your own identity.” As an artist, I really loved this; whatever we bring to the conversation, even if the idea started somewhere else, it should be somewhat original because there is only one person like yourself, and that is you, thus, only you will have that unique idea.

    Now, to DIY or not…. I think that we all have to recognize our boundaries and abilities, and respect others creative ideas.  If you just want the shoe, respect the maker, the idea, buy the shoe!  If the shoe gave you an idea, maybe of a different kind of embellishment you would totally want and love to see on a shoe, I say do it yourself – the shoe just gave you the inspiration and the idea, this is much different than what making an exact replica would be, and that is copying. 

  • Cherie Gisondi

    Many times I’ll DIY, then I’m over the trend and saved myself some money!

  • Fkxoxo


  • Lauramouyal

    what does diy mean ??? sorry I’m french

  • Caroletanenbaum

    Those shoes are fabulous! Love them.

  • I thought of DIYing them to be honest (I’ve seen them in British Elle sometime in the spring), but I haven’t found a pair of shoes with a decent heel (there were some plain black ones from Zara but the heel was to high for me)!

  • maggie

    A read like this may be interesting to you too:

    I just bought it today!

  • AnnaSafronova

    well, there is also another side. we are so focused on being entrepreneural and unique, doing our DIY things and always showing that we have our own different opinion that sometimes create too much waste. it’s ok to be just a consumer sometimes, respect other ideas and admit that it’s ok not to be as good as someone else