The History of Block Heels

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The Block Heel

In 1965, one of the masters of shoe design, Roger Vivier, launched a new shoe silhouette down the runway at YSL.  It was the Pilgrim pump — a square toed, square heeled heel that looked decidedly modern and eminently fresh at the same time. A wizard at the architecture of footwear (he brought us the delicious comma heel and one of the original spindle thin stiletto shapes), this silhouette was all hard edges, playful, poppy, mod.  Almost twenty years after Dior had debuted the New Look with nipped waists and peplum moments, it was now all rectangular mini-skirts, triangular trapeze dresses, bright saturated colors. As always, shoes reflected the cultural moment, echoing back a spirit of unstructured playfulness and experimentation.  Women were revving up for the women’s movement – they wanted silhouettes they could MOVE in and the block heel fit the bill perfectly. At the same time chic, and as we saw in Belle de Jour,indeed even sexy, the block heel on the Pilgrim pump ushered in new thinking of what was possible in shoes and sowed the seeds for platforms and chunky moments we started to see in the 70’s.

Image via Shrimptoncouture.com

 

So why the block heel now?

You’ve got your go-to work stilettos, a few pairs of platforms — why another silhouette?  Right now the block heel is fresher than ever.  It’s been amped up to be higher than the original Pilgirm, and it makes a statement most in your typically pointy-toe high heel where the front looks like a classic stiletto, but the back is a blast of fresh air.

block heel brings a statement to your wardrobe, it updates your look instantly, and in the case of my line of course, the textures and contrast colors in the heel make it a ton of fun. Not to mention, the block heel is extremely practical — easy to walk in, much more stable, and does not get stuck in subway grates. It’s a crucial silhouette for Spring, Fall and beyond to inject a contemporary vibe into your wardrobe whether it be for work or play.

Of course, I happen to think my MeghanSAYS block heels are some of the chic-est shoes around. I’ve designed for you a light blue denim with a dark denim trim and a raffia heel, a bright pink floral with pink heel, a black and white gingham with black heel and a black croc-embossed leather with a blush trim. All of these styles except the croc-embossed leather, are also vegan.

So have a little fun this Spring and Fall. Right this way.

xo
Meg

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