According to Christian Louboutin, "A shoe has so much more to offer than just to walk." And, indeed, the gregarious rascal behind the world's most fiercely desired, red-soled shoes of dreams illustrated the importance of footwear far beyond function in the Style Issue of The New Yorker.
From his mischievous, overindulged childhood in Paris—Louboutin missed 64 days of school in one semester and moved out of the house at 12 years old—to club-kid days at the city's infamous Le Palace nightclub and time spent at Charles Jourdan, Louboutin has paved the way for his very own brand of extreme luxury that forsakes the precious for the something a little more perverted.
Louboutin, in his own words, creates his masterpieces from a place of happiness—if not a comfortable one. Here, the top 10 quotables from the must-read profile:
1. "I am not producing pills to cure people, so I feel that the whole system should be slightly joyful."
2. "I'll do shoes for the lady who lunches, but it would be, like, a really nasty lunch, talking about men."
3. "My favorite sound is definitely mules. If it was an instrument, it's really ping—the touch of the black keys of the piano."
4. "One thing I detest, I have to say, is when a shoe is too soft, and it's molding to the foot. This is quite disgusting. And I really, really hate incredibly long shoes, where the last is very pointy, almost like Aladdin."
5. "The shiny red color of the soles has no function other than to identify to the public that they are mine. I selected the color because it is engaging, flirtatious, memorable and the color of passion."
6. "Yes, I wanted to be a shoe designer, but I never thought it could be a profession. But what was the alternative? Doctor? Too dirty! Air hostess? Maybe not! Then someone gave me a book on Roger Vivier and, cherie, instantly I knew that was it!"
7. "The core of my work is dedicated not to pleasing women but to pleasing men."
8. "I hate the concept of the clog! It's fake, it's ugly, and it's not even comfortable! And I hate the whole concept of comfort! It's like when people say, 'Well, we're not really in love, but we're in a comfortable relationship.' You're abandoning a lot of ideas when you are too into comfort. 'Comfy'—that's one of the worst words! I just picture a woman feeling bad, with a big bottle of alcohol, really puffy. It's really depressing, but she likes her life because she has comfortable clogs."
9. "The shoe is very much an X-ray of social comportment"
10. "When a woman buys a pair of shoes, she never looks at the shoe. She stands up and looks in the mirror, she looks at the breast, the ass, from the front, from the side, blah blah blah. If she likes herself, then she considers the shoe."
For an exerpt of the article, head over to newyorker.com.