When thinking of the infamous shoemaker Christian Louboutin, a very clear image of elegance, elitism, and sublimity via the status symbol of red bottomed heels reaching dizzying hights pops up into my head. I see legendary red carpet moments, paparazzi shots and chic business women getting out of the backseats of expensive cars to conquer the world. Living in Berlin – a city that is not necessarily known for any of the above – my encounters with the notorious red sole in everyday life have been fairly limited. You don’t see Louboutins in skate parks, neither do you find them in the brittle streets of Kreuzberg and certainly not in front of the Berghain. But this could change now.
With the launch of the „Loubishark“, the company gets casual – which seems unusual in itself for the brand – in the sneaker world. But of course Louboutin wasn’t Louboutin if those sneakers wouldn’t be immediately recognizable by an intensely red sole, this one shaped like stinging shark teeth. The new models, which debuted as an exclusive pre-launch of 600 limited edition pairs, are not only radical in their design but also bursting with technical innovations. Through mixing materials and colors the new sneaker features a hi-tech upper crafted from a total of 13 different components including suede leather panels, rubber and mesh giving it a modern sports-inflected feel. A shock-absorbing cushioned insole offering increased protection proves Louboutin’s close attention to detail.
But let’s go back to the sole, which is without a doubt the most outstanding feature. The chunky technical sole is inspired in part by the track shoes of the 70’s, while the oversized moulded ridges not only fit with the shark theme, but also recall the Maison’s signature spikes. Another design aspect we are already familiar with is the clash of the Maison’s iconic red with a brilliant optic white, which makes it very aligned with the houses high heel collections. We are curious to see if the sneakers will archive the same cult status as their fabulous heeled counterparts. We took those beauties for a stroll and officially deem them Berlin proof.
Text: Ann-Kathrin Lietz
Images: Christian Louboutin