Free People & The Ugliest Shoes Ever Conceived


Monday I received an email about the March Free People catalog. “I am cleaning the vomit off of myself,” wrote the tipster. “Just wait until you see the slouch clog.” Yesterday? Another email:

“I just wanted to draw your attention to the March 2010 Free People catalog. Of particular interest to you may be the “Floral Slouch Clog.'”

And then last night, I found the catalog in my mailbox. And I became acquainted with the “slouch clog.”

Click to enlarge, if you dare.

Jenny and Theresa were right: This is an epic piece of footwear that warrants discussion. A conversation which begins, What. The. Fuck.

It’s a cotton (possibly corduroy) boot, of sorts, strapped to the leg with leather buckle closures, atop a 2 inch wooden platform and a 5 inch wedge heel. With an open toe. “Clog” doesn’t seem to be the proper word for it, unless you define clog as nasty gunk often found blocking your drain.

The Floral Slouch Clog is made by Irregular Choice, a quirky British shoe company which I happen to like, though the designs are often hit and miss. I’ll confess I own a few of their shoes, but while the styles can be cool and charming, they can also be bizarre and terrifying.

But the Floral Slouch Clog is definitely in a category all by itself. It’s true that shoes have gotten really strange lately; the “suicide shoes” seen on Nina Ricci Fall’09 runway, for example, or any of the McQueen ankle-snappers. But unlike the McQueen hoof heels, the FSC is not about dreamy, otherworldly glamor, but hippie-ish countrified weirdness. And it is, quite possibly, the ugliest shoe ever conceived. If you have seen uglier, by all means, upload a jpeg in the comments, or email me. We’ll deal with the rest of the catalog later.

Free People [Official Site]
Irregular Choice [Official Site]

Edited to add: The Floral Slouch Clogs are $248.

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