Let’s talk about a fun red-carpet shoe.
A fun red-carpet shoe, though it sounds like something your Aunt Cathy uses to describe her date-night footwear, is anything other than a thin strip of leather across the toe and around the ankle. It is any color other than black, “nude,” or “identical match to dress.” It has embellishments, bells, whistles, trinkets. It is cool or weird and adds interest to the outfit. It could be the outfit, quite honestly. But a fun red-carpet shoe does not exist. Celebrities love the alternative.
Her shoes, however, while certainly nice (I will take them!), are so boring that I fell asleep while writing and have only just now awoke to finish this sentence. Had she gone with something a bit more like this…
….she could have taken her outfit to a whole new level.
From the same event, let’s take a look at Paltrow-comma-Gwyneth.
Big fan in general. Top-to-ankle here, she looks great. But her feet ruin the whole thing for me. Black pumps? Was that the only offering?
(Shout out to A$AP Rocky in the back.)
Celebrities have expendable Monopoly money. They also get stuff for free. They have personal shoppers who can hunt down the coolest shoes in town, if scouring Net-a-Porter’s sandal selection is not their cup of tea. Most celebrities don’t live in New York, either, so it’s not like a lack of closet space is their reason for only owning one safe, practical, wear-with-all, foot-focused accessory. They get driven everywhere, so for one night out who cares about comfort and sensibility? After walking red carpets, they’re ushered to seats immediately. It’s frustrating. What is the point of being a celebrity on a red carpet if you are not going to take full fashion advantage?
I could direct my frustration toward the stylists, of course. Before these red carpet events, it’s the stylists who source the dresses and the accompanying accouterment. They arrive with the options they’d like to see their clients in, including rows of beautiful boats sized according to the celebrity’s feet. As all good stylists know, you must also show up with safe options: the leg-lengthening nudes, the height-enhancing platforms, the sexy strappy sandals. This is like going to a scary-fancy restaurant where the chef thinks foam is a food group, then having the waiter whisper to you, “Psst. We have chicken fingers. It’s a secret, off-menu item.” Of course you are going to choose the chicken fingers! I always choose the chicken fingers, the food and the metaphor. Chicken fingers are consistently delicious, just as fail-proof shoes will always suffice. When your risky dress is aesthetically questionable to the masses, these shoes can keep you from crossing the line onto a Worst Dressed list.
BUT IT IS SO BORING!!!
If you’re a non-celebrity with maximum one or two “black tie” events a year (if that) and your bank account can’t take consistent thousand-dollar shoe hits; when you’re just a girl, standing before a mirror, trying to get her legs to love her, then sure, I’m right there with you. Do the simple pump, the sexy sandal, the hem-helping platform. I’ve got a pair of tan suede sandals I once bought for a wedding that have become my everything, so boring they work better than Ambien if you’re having trouble falling asleep.
When you have a million red carpets a season and a million dollars to play with, however, why not spend as much attention on your feet? Why not say, “I just got paid for my newest rom-com space thriller. I have this amazing dress that didn’t cost me a cent. I can go one step up from barefoot or, I can use shoes to make this an OUTFIT.” Why not ask, “How can I have fun? How can I get freaky? What shoes are so cool they’d elevate jeans and a tee shirt to icon status?”
I hated her red, thigh-high lace-ups at the Met Gala, but at least Rihanna gets the general concept.
It makes me so mad. Celebrities, we all know you’re beautiful. We all know you’re famous. Why not share the spotlight a little bit and hand the microphone over to your feet?
Photos via Getty Images.