Once upon a time, budget brands and high-street imitators simply chose to knock-off popular high-end goods that were easily reproducable. Classic example: as Louboutin’s red soles proved ubiquitous, it became a pinch to replicate that feature without jeopardizing the overall integrity of the designer’s creation. To avoid lawsuits, it’s always been safest to stick with proven, universal, non-esoteric designs to mimic. Generally, impersonators follow still this protocol. But we have stumbled upon a highly impeachable exception.
Givenchy‘s wild Fall 2008 creation, the “Up the Leg Gladiator Sandal”, which retails for just under $1,800, is fetishistic and fantastic. Surely a such marvel in luxury footwear is inimitable, right? Incorrect. Unbelievably, one plucky company already has had the audacity to copy this shoe at a fraction of the price.
Can you guess which shoe pictured above is Givenchy’s original and which is a knock-off?
Before seeing the answer below, tell us your gut instinct!
Ready to know the truth?
On the right is the original Givenchy creation (only a few left available at shopbop!) and to its left is the bawdy copycat: Promiscuous’s “Tempt” sandal, available at Zappos. This “sultry Promiscuous boot has the gravitational pull of a small moon”, reads the production description. But how does it compare to Givenchy?
From a distance, we admit the two are nearly indistinguishable.
But upon closer inspection, it becomes clear that the simulacrum lacks the nuances of the original. Promiscuous forgos several key strap and buckle details and clumsily fills in the blanks with the usual features of a strappy spiked heel. The clunky visible platform instantly places the shoe in stipper territory (at least Riccardo Tisci had the propriety to hide the platform in his version). It even comes with “heart-shaped gel insert” on the inner sole!
We’ll admit that Givenchy’s Up The Leg sandal has a strong S&M connotation, too; it originally worked best in context with the clothing collection, where it provided a thematic contrast to the richly Gothic finery on the runway. Promiscuous’s version, meanwhile, is simply more trash than flash. Want to know how it looks in Red Patent? See for yourself. Let’s just say Mary Carey would be prowd.
Style sleuths that we are, our curiosity got the better of us, and so we did a little more investigating. It turns out that Promiscuous specializes in knocking off all kinds of high-end footwear (we noted several other Givenchy-lite styles) and upping the hoochie factor about 40 percent. We wonder what Tisci would say to that?
Were you convinced for even a minute by Givenchy’s imitators?