11 3 mins 14 yrs


I guarantee if you buy your special guy a pair of these, you’ll never hear the end of it.

Neither will he if he ever walks out of the house in them.


Unless his client roster includes a modern-day Fred Flintstone or an ultra-camp incarnation of Elvis Presley, we can hardly imagine what luxe shoe designer Manolo Blahnik is doing making animal-print toe-ring thong sandals and blue suede peep-toe slingbacks – for dudes.

Best known for creating sky-high f–me [or mug-me, like Carrie on "Sex and the City"] stilettos – priced from $500 to $2,000 – Blahnik’s putting his reputation on the line and betting his empire on the fashion-forward adventurous spirit of the ultra-rich male.

"These are some simple sandals in beautiful materials, and a few classics – with a twist," Blahnik said in a press release. "I thought it was time to bring back some color into the male wardrobe."

"Some color," Manolo? We haven’t heard that kind of understatement since the naked Times Square guy told us he was "having a bad day."

Garish Tropicana suedes overpower the "Meze" and classic oxfords’ clean lines. The "Afiyet" style’s clownish shape – seriously, a peep-toe slingback? – in cerulean blue suede belies the brand’s signature handiwork and craftsmanship.

And don’t even get us started on the Tarzan-Jesus-inspired leopard "Bir" thong – shirtless urban safari anyone?

So while it’s possible Blahnik will move a few pairs – after all, the shoes go on sale in Europe first in February and the men there will wear practically anything – we’re not quite convinced they’ll be a runaway hit stateside in the spring.

"I’d pass," said Brooklynite Tim Kulich, 28, when we showed him photos of the new designs. "It looks a little feminine to me."

Other Midtown office workers also scoffed at the outré styles – "I’m sure there are guys who will wear them based on the name," said Craig Poplar, 38. "I don’t think I’d ever be caught in suede, slingback, lace-up shoes with a heel."

More here, as well as a look at the rest of the line.

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11 thoughts on “Something Special for the Man in Your Life

  1. If I see anyone tapping one of those in an airport bathroom, I’m rushing for the door.

  2. Just recently i saw a pair of ‘Mens’ patent red leather sailor shoes in Topshop.
    Thought i was in the ladys section?
    Not quite as bad as these….but!

  3. This reminds me of a conversation from a few years ago about the Margin of Error.

    First of all, it is such a wonderful phrase: the Margin of Error. Conjures up other phrases, like the Axis of Evil or the Path to Hell. When I picture it, I’m looking at the outer edges of a bell curve. Truth is all clustered tight in the center, while Error lives on the extreme left and on the extreme right. In other words, it should be called the Margins of Error, the outer boundaries on the page of Fact.

    But, I digress. I really came hear to talk about my wife’s niece’s husband, Dr. Les Moore. You would really love this guy; in fact, everybody really loves this guy. Les is a good old boy from North Carolina, a veteran, a martial artist, an acupuncturist and a lay minister. In his spare time, he writes books (like Healing in the Christian Spiritual Tradition) and dabbles in his Scotch-Irish roots. Here’s his curriculum vitae from his website Classical Formulas:

    Dr. Moore received a Doctor of Naturopathic Medicine and a Master of Science in Oriental Medicine from the National College of Naturopathic Medicine in Portland, Oregon. He is a New York State licensed acupuncturist and is Board Certified by the National Certification Commission for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine. He has also earned a Master of Arts in Applied Theology and a Graduate Certificate in Interfaith Pastoral and Spiritual Care from Marylhurst University in Marylhurst, Oregon.

    One family Christmas a few years ago, after turkey dinner, Les and I and my wife’s nephew Mike were in the family room. Mike appeared to be napping while Les and I discussed world affairs. When we got around to the middle east, I stated my contention that Americans might not be 100% pro-Israel, but they are 100% anti-Palestinian. In fact, I went further to contend that, since the margin of error is usually expressed in a range of percentages, e.g., +/- 3%, all of the pro-Palestinians in the United States are within that margin of error, and, therefore, do not exist! At this point, Mike woke up and told us that we didn’t exist because we were obviously pro-Palestinians because we were both wearing Birkenstock sandals.

    And all of the above is well within the bell curve of Truth.

  4. I swear I mis-read your first line :

    "your special guy a pair of these" by auto-substituting an A for a U.

    Alan Douglas

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