After enjoying her observations in the Comments for more than a year and trading the occasional e-mail with her between times, I was struck by a particularly vivid conversational interchange with this avid clog lover. Apropos of nothing, I recently observed, "Isn't it fascinating how a photo of a pair of shoes can move you so?" To which she replied with her signature astuteness:
You and I are proportion savants: we are aware of and crave certain proportions that please us, and we are always on that search image. You and I share a texture/surface mania as well. And you and I find certain combinations of proportion, surface, and chiaroscuro highly charged. Most people in my acquaintance have only the most limited awareness of such things, and even then only under equally limited circumstances.
OMG! How does this woman know me so well??? Has she been rooting around in my closet unbeknownst to me??? But then the panic subsided with a sheepish moment of realization as I recalled that I had been online raving about this shoe or that for the better part of a year. It's pretty obvious what I like in footwear and why. Well, duh! But in any case, Ms. K's savvy explication of the irresistible wonder of footwear had me in its spell. Maybe she would be willing to share some of her own insights into that delight we all know so well. Happily, she said yes. And below you'll find her first in a series of occasional contributions to Every Clog Has Its Day.
It’s a happy etymology that the word “arch” is the start of “architecture.”
Let’s face it: human anatomy is architecture, albeit with more flexibility and locomotor possibilities than most buildings. To me, the highly malleable arch of the foot is what lends magic to the architectural support structure of the leg.
As an anatomist and sculptress, the engineering of the human body fuels my love for shoes---the critical thinking skills that go into shoe design mesmerize and excite me.
Think about it (as I’m sure all of us regulars here on ECHID do!): a shoe must support, protect, propel, and decorate a foot during all its myriad daily duties. Shoes must bear the hundreds of pounds per square inch pressure we place on our feet as we walk, and be manufactured to literally grind for hours on end between a rock and a hard place—otherwise known to us city dwellers as the bones of our feet meeting the concrete of the sidewalk. Add to all these design challenges the expense of making such a hard-working foot container attractive, and we come (finally!) to clogs.
Clogs. They do it all. And when they perform reliably and cozily while satisfying our desire for soles that feed our souls, we must dip deeply into our wallets (or hold a yard sale or take a second job or investigate our home equity line of credit!) to have them in our closets.
I’m ever eager to revisit images of some of my favorite clogs introduced to us here, and share some of my observations about them with fellow shoe lovers.
Miu Miu clogs posted August 17, 2009--Flattery in its sincerest form
Miu Prada elevates. Literally and figuratively.
To paraphrase Dorothy of Kansas, “Leather and nailheads and suede! Oh my!” All poised on a wooden sole to soothe and support a foot once it’s swallowed by that open throat.
The charm of this shoe lies in the imbalance of design elements: the rococo ogee curves punctuated with shiny metal, the colorful interplay of amber and sienna and ginger, and the simplicity of the silhouette all add up to a playful shoe to compliment skinny jeans. But there are subtle hints of danger in the heel taper and height, the toe point, and the mola of leather and suede that would superbly compliment a severe pencil skirt and jacket that’s all business. These aspects set up a country vs. city frisson that makes me want to take these shoes everywhere.
Like a wedding cake made with leather icing and brass fluting, these clogs are a marriage from heaven. Ooh, ooh! The bride in white ones of satin and suede, the groom’s in black kid and patent! There’s a lasting union!
All that and a pink box, too—what more could a shoe lover want?
[On my feet as I blog: I feel so faithless today. Me. That clog crazed blogger. Wearing a pair of camo tabi boots. What's this world coming to? Don't worry. I'm not leaving the fold. Just taking a break for the day. I like to think when the temperature inside my condo returns to the lower 70s following the repair of my air conditioner on Thursday, I'll be returning to my regularly scheduled life. 'Til then, things just seem a little out of kilter.]