Luxebeaute's Blog

October 3, 2015

Winter Footwear Dejour

Filed under: Shoes — luxebeaute @ 3:14 am

I love the Winter months. Not because I enjoy cozying up on the couch listening to the rain whilst getting all introspective like, but for much more superficial reasons… All Summer, I look forward to first sign of gloomy whether so that I may breakout my jackets, scarves and boots! Yes, I am deep.

Though it is only Winter in theory, as Whether wise,  Californian Mother Nature is being quite schizophrenic. Even so, shoe designers in all price ranges have a lot to offer this Winter. Tall boots have been kept somewhat plain but I say go for whatever catches your eye and represents you. I like classic and chic but I also can’t resist an excellently embellished knee-high. Especially if its retro look, bright, or embroidered.

Somehow, designers have managed to keep overly embellished looks from coming off as cheap; and a surprising amount of companies that I typically brush off as for the under 30 crowd (Rock & Republic, Collin Stewart for VS, Guess) are designing chic looks which can easily be mistaken for their high end counterpart. Imagine my surprise when my eyes led my body (and wallet) toward a lovely platform whilst online shopping which looked like it could have been a pair of Valentino’s, but were actually Guess! These my dear readers, are the surprises I like- and I don’t do surprises.

If you do not own any yet,  this time to upgrade and invest in a pair of really good quality knee high or over the knee boots.  You will get a lot of bang for your buck, considering they are masters of disguises of sorts- they look equally great with knee length dresses. Ditto for the ankle boot, which seems to survive the test of time. These will both come back into play fashionwise at some point within the years to come- trust me I know, as this Winter is the PERFECT time for me to break out my Topnotch lace up boots by Charles David and my Dollhouse Ciru Studed ankle boots, and a pair of suede ankle Bandelinos (in which I have had for 10 yrs) from storage.

Don’t be afraid of these particular boot trends, embrace them!

Luxe Beaute Top Boot Picks:
Charlotte Olympia - Bonnie Suede Metallic Platform Knee Bootsnm bootChristian Louboutin - Leather Over-The-Knee Corset Boots

Rockstud Leather 95mm Knee Boot, NeroLanvin - Metallic Python & Leather Knee-High Boots
Charlotte Olympia Bonnie Platform ($1,195), Neiman Marcus Mira Studded Leather Boot ($489), Louboutin over the knees ($2, 595), Valentino Rockstud ($2,440), Lanvin Metallic Python ($1,194), Suzani chunky heel ($350).


March 18, 2013

How to Do Retro and Vintage Perfectly: 1940’s-1950’s Era

Filed under: Fashion (Couture, RTW, Trends, Designers),Shoes,Vintage and retro — luxebeaute @ 12:45 am
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I am-and have always been-a sucker for vintage fashions circa 1940’s and 1950’s; I am always on the lookout for great vintage dresses. I have been collecting since 1988 (mainly velvet “coffin” tuck, wriggle and crape swing dresses), these items have been difficult to find in the past

Best vintage clothing reproductions (dresses, tops, skirts and jackets): Hands down, my favorite for dresses is Stop Starring Clothing. This company gets it right each and every time. All of their clothing is immaculately crafted and feminine and it’s difficult for the untrained eye to even notice it’s not actually vintage. These are wonderful WW2 and 1950’s  recreations which are extremely affordable, typically ranging between $90-$130 per dress. For beautiful 1930’s and 40’s reproductions, Trashy Diva is exquisite. While not as much style variation as Stop Staring, the dresses lovely and they offer beautiful tops and skirts as well.  I also am in love with Dixie Fried Clothing and Kiss Me Deadly- both small companies which make extremely sexy wriggle dresses… As for designers both big and small who create clothing with strong influence and elements of vintage, I really like Wheels & Doll Baby and of course frilly retro gowns by Betsey Johnson.

Best vintage Shoe reproductions: Shoes are harder to reproduce. I think if you are into fashion and not dressing for/because you’re a part of a specific revival subculture (rockabilly, etc) an authentic vintage outfit looks its best paired with high end designer heels- In my opinion, nothing can beat Christian louboutin, Yves Saint Lauren and Moschino. While I am a firm believer in every shoe addict investing in at least 1 pair of Loubies or YSL’s, I understand this is not always an option. For those who like the CL style but lack the funds I highly suggest heels from the Pin Up Girl Shoe line (by PinUp Girl Clothing), which offers a beautiful and wide array of high quality retro heels at affordable prices. For extremely unique and well made VR shoes, my two favorite smaller designers are Minna Parikka and Lucky Lou. MP focuses on adding quirky elements to designs reminiscent of the 1920’s-mid 1950’s I would say, and sometimes even earlier. Lucky Lou designs are inspired by the Souvenir’ shoes of WW II; they are hand carved in the Philippines and are absolutely stunning.

Best Vintage Lingerie reproductions: I am amazed at the rise of vintage inspired lingerie and nylons- thank you Dita and pinup revival models for contributing to the revival! My vary favorites are Agent Provacateur, Stocking Girl, Secrets in LaceLucy B and Aloe for 1930’s type lounge wear.

Best vintage Selections: Hard to find and rarely inexpensive, vintage clothing companies and shops can be awfully hit and miss. With the rise of the internet I don’t find myself entering vintage stores in big cities anymore (which seem to cater to 1960’s through 1980’s anyway). When it comes to in person vintage collecting, I go with expos as well as seek out unknown shops far removed away from metropolitan areas. For me, online is the way to go… My 5 personal favorite online vintage dealers that can do absolutely no wrong are  Antique Dress (antique and regency era early 1800’s through the 1930’s; 1930’s and up are vintage designer pieces), Past Perfect (Victorian and Edwardian through the 1970’s), Posh Girl (one of a kind 1920’2-1960’s era), Blue Velvet (Deco to disco) and  Cabaret (high fashion 1950’s & 1960’s). While pricey, these stores are very particular about what they sell; highly collectible, unique and beautiful vintage clothing, shoes and accessories. If you find an expensive piece in which you just can’t live without, note the majority of these stores allow for deposits and/or layaway. And let’s not forget about Ebay! I have been extremely surprised by some of the lovely inexpensive vintage frocks up for grabs here.



March 7, 2010

Loving it- Nicholas Kirkwood Heels

Filed under: Fashion (Couture, RTW, Trends, Designers),Shoes — luxebeaute @ 9:23 pm

Shame on me for not doing a featured write up on one of my most coveted shoe designers on the planet, Nicholas Kirkwood, until now. It still comes as a surprise that so many American heel whores still in the Bay Area are not aware of his royal shoe highness.

Nicholas Kirkwood is an extraordinary British shoe designer who began his sexy avant garde footwear line 4 years ago. His designs are fashion forward and feminine, mixing elements of architectural design with vintage luxury and edgy modern innovation. His creations are stand out and give Dior, YSL and Louboutin a run for their money- literally, at half the price (typically $600 pr pair). In my opinion, he has the competitive edge.

May 20, 2009

The Gladiator heel trend Continued

Filed under: Fashion (Couture, RTW, Trends, Designers),Shoes — luxebeaute @ 2:16 am

At first I was completely put off by this trend because I could not stand the whole Roman empire flat sandal look. But it has evolved into a great heel option for Summer evening wear with pants and likely also throughout Fall and Winter 09 as well.

I have found for me personally, the look only works in two ways; big sweaters in a variety of colors, leggings (both gloss and varied color cottons) accessorized by a designer handbag or vintage reptile clutch bag and 2) a colorful pair of  Desert Blue Jeans with fitted tees . Doing this look with dresses just doesn’t work for me, tho’ I definitely plan to work it with some shorts during the hotter months. [FYI for all my short sisters out there (I am 5 ft) doing gladiator heels with skinny fits and leggings really elongates well.

Because this is an obvious trend with no forecasting of it ever becoming a classic wardrobe staple (and you know how I feel about trends!) I have no desire to purchase designer gladiator heels . While some of them are great, I know they would end up taking up much needed closet space for years after the fact. I caught myself checking out the Dior Extreme platforms over and over again but there are so many similar styles that I opted for the Candice ones which are basically identical. While you will never catch me doing “knock offs” I am certainly all for “similar” lol.

Since there actually really is quite a variety of gladiator heel styles, I picked two: Candice glads in black (which are basically identical to the Dior extreme glads believe it or not) and also the CHAI from Michael Antonio in both grey and purple. While not exactly an obviouse “in your face” gladiator, I also went for the  Cage heel from Dulce Vita also because its gorgeous, sort of vintage-ish, available in a forest green suede shade (my fave!), looks like an expensive designer piece (DV is of great quality), and has been marked down from its original $160 to $50 (aprx).

The Candice,  Chai and Cage heel can be  found online for abt. $50 a pair if you do some digging, making it quite the reasonable value considering I don’t forsee this trend letting up any time soon.

February 12, 2009

New Louboutin’s – Presenting the Marie Antoinette Line!

Filed under: Fashion (Couture, RTW, Trends, Designers),Shoes — luxebeaute @ 3:18 am

Christian Louboutin has collaborated with renowned embroiderer Jean-Francoise Lesage to create the Marie Antoinette, and they are limited to 36 pairs per design and run about $6,300 per pair. These will be available from Louboutin’s Madison Avenue boutique on February 26th and its my understanding they will not be available at any of the other boutiques… Doesn’t matter anyway because as much as I adore these, there are far too many other Loubies on my shopping list right now! So (un)fortunately for moi, I wil suplament owning a pair of these beautes for aprx. 6-7 other new pairs at that price, sigh.

February 28, 2008

Diablo Cody says “no” to Wearing $1M+ Shoes to the Oscars- Indie Cred or Publicity Stunt?

Filed under: Shoes — luxebeaute @ 5:34 pm

This year for the Oscars, Stuart Weitzman has decided to choose Diablo Cody, Oscar nominee for the screenplay of Juno, to wear his “Retro Rose” pumps worth over $1 million. The  shoe features two Kwiat diamond roses fixed to 1940s-style beige metallic T-strap high heels and over 1,800 Kwiat diamonds weighing 100 carats were actually used to make the roses, 400 of them have been incorporated into the design of the shoe.

But according to the Associated Press reports , Diablo might be the first star since Weitzman instituted this tradition to refuse to wear the headline-making shoes. She said Yesterday, my stylist took me to go try on my Oscar shoes, which were made for me by Stuart Weitzman. They were sparkly. Kind of retro. With hefty brooches to be affixed atop each narrow toebox. I was pleased, but it wasn’t, like, an event.Today, I read this. NEWS TO ME, kids. I must have somehow missed the part where my shoes cost a MILLION FUCKING DOLLARS and my “choice” of footwear would be publicized nationwide. I honestly thought they were just sparkly shoes. Mr. Weitzman did mention that the diamonds were real when I tried them on, but I’m not Nancy Rockman, Expert Gemologist. I didn’t, you know, bust out my miniature spyglass and assess the potential worth of my kicks. I swear to God, I have the most bizarre life. Truly This looks really attention-whorey, and for once, I didn’t do it on purpose. I’m flattered that they picked me (surprise!) to wear the Pimp Shooz, but WTF, right? ETA: I’m actually really pissed about this, now that I think about it. They’re using me to publicize their stupid shoes and NOBODY ASKED ME. I would never consent to a lame publicity stunt at a time when I already want to hide. I’m sorry if I sound like a party-pooper, but Jeebus.

“I would expect she probably won’t wear them. She made that very clear,” Weitzman later told the AP about the issue during a telephone interview Saturday night. “If she decides not to wear the shoes, that’s Diablo’s decision, and I wouldn’t try to convince her otherwise. It’s Diablo’s day, and she can do whatever she wants.” Weitzman says he made the cost of the metallic beige shoes clear to Cody when he met with her. He blames Cody’s behind-the-scenes team for not communicating the value of the shoes to the Oscar-nominated screenwriter.

And a few days later into all of this hooplah she was quoted as stating , “If I had a million dollars I would help people.”

As the Saga Continues: But now it looks as if Stuart Weitzman may have finally lost his classy cool- well not really, he just decided to speak out and defend his work after all of Diablo Cody’s unnecessary passive aggressive shoe bashing to the press… Stuart Weitzman tells TMZ that Diablo actually selected the shoes herself, even choosing diamond roses to adorn them-humn…  “I have been making a special pair of shoes to be worn at the Academy Awards for a number of years. This year – more so than in any previous year – the lady who was given the opportunity to wear it was quite involved in the design process. Diablo Cody sent me examples of the type of shoes she liked and actually did the final selection herself, choosing a three-inch retro style T-strap as well as a changeover pair of ballerinas. She chose to adorn the shoes with medium-sized diamond roses from three different sizes offered to her. Why she seems to be so surprised as to the attention being paid to her and these shoes, I cannot answer. It should certainly come as no surprise that a one-of-a-kind pair of shoes would generate excitement at the Academy Awards.”

So while at first I was completely in Diablo Cody’s corner with a “right on girl!” type salute for her socially conscious moral decision making, now I am just starting to wonder if it was all a media ploy or not… I think the only way anyone will ever really know the real deal is by watching to see if she does or does not turn into a Diva. And since we know damn well she’s gonna have a few million to herself pretty soon (if she doesn’t already), let’s wait and see if she indeed gives a big ole’ chunk of that to charity.

[And tho’ completely irrelevant to the “shoe” issue, why all the hate on this woman? Yeah she’s a bitch but let’s be cautious not to confuse pride  with unwarranted egomaniacal behavior. After all, she is a stripper who became the first woman to win an Oscar! On the flip side, while some of the stuff she says in interviews makes me laugh because she appears to be an utterly real and off the cuff shit disturber, it can go from fem indie awesome to CourtneyLoveitis in an instant]

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