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August 23 2014

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high drama: heels and the photographers who love them

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My purchase of five-inch-high sandals from Chloé had much to do with having three kids in fours years—I had to elongate the frame to camouflage the couple (OK, three or four—but who’s counting?) extra tummy inches. And, naturally, where else to test them but the school run? Despite wisecracks from my husband (“Did they come with an insurance policy?”) and giggles from my kinders (“Mommy is a giant!”), off I teetered, leaning on my three- and five-year-olds for support. At the school gate, I got a different reaction: Teachers looked disapproving, daddies looked startled and stirred, and mommies walked quickly in the other direction. I heard one murmur “slut”—and not quite under her breath—before she moved off. Success!

Later that day, at Christopher Kane and Aquascutum, shoes proved to be the focal point, especially Kane’s amusing dinosaur-horned jobbies. But I was still somewhat taken aback when a photographer dropped to his knees and started snapping away at my five-inch-ers. “I don’t have a foot fetish,” explained Kamel Lahmadi, who runs www.styleandthecity.com. “It’s just that heels and feet and toes are fascinating.” Right.

The fascination continued at Harrods’ launch of Rock & Republic‘s cosmetics line. Here, photographers were snapping away at guest Samantha Bunting, who was wearing a short Azzedine Alaïa dress, bare legs, and Manolo Blahnik steel-toed python booties made expressly for Christopher Kane’s show—the same pair owned by Carine Roitfield.

The boots were a gift from her pals Tammy and Christopher Kane, Bunting explained, and they get noticed everywhere she goes. “I went to three fashion shows and the photogs were taking pix of anyone who had great heels,” she observed. “Clothes are fading into the background. You can wear high street and no one will notice if you have a killer pair of heels on—they eclipse every outfit.”

Photo: James McCauley

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