“Husbands come and go, but the Chanel slingback is forever!” - Karen Walker (Will & Grace)
After 15 years of retirement after WW2 Gabrielle Bonheur “Coco” Chanel came back to work to find male designers such as Christian Dior and Cristóbal Balenciaga on the scene. Chanel was horrified to see how they had created such “illogical designs” for women that were not comfortable or practical. She believed in liberating women from the constraints of corsets and heavy skirts with a new and improved casual chic style.
Ladies had always worn single coloured shoes to match their outfits but In 1957 Chanel went against the standard and designed the classic two-toned sling back which combined both comfort and style perfectly. The shoe was designed in a way to be worn from morning to night for any occasion (something Y-Heels can totally relate to!). The beige colour was chosen to make the legs look longer and the black toe cap was to make the feet look petite. The 5cm high block heel was to allow women to function in their new lifestyle and more importantly for comfort.
When Karl Lagerfeld took over he used inspiration from the classic shoe to design the two-tones ballerina pump. Lagerfeld also redesigned the slingback and toe box for better wear and style for Fall 2015. Chanel’s collection of shoes has since evolved drastically going into the trainer and sports wear style.