Edward Scissorfeet is what people call the infamous backwards high heels created by Leanie van der Vyver and Dutch shoe designer René van den Berg. Called “Scary Beautiful,” this crazy fashion style is intended to serve as a commentary on today’s impossible standards of beauty. But others simply call them the scariest shoes of all time.
High heeled shoes have a long history, with Egyptian pictographs depicting people adding a little height with their shoes. High heels did not become popular in modern times until around 1660, when a shoemaker named Nicholas Lestage designed high heeled shoes for Louis XIV. Yes, that’s right. A man designed high heels for another man. This was no queer eye for the straight guy, but eventually this new fashion style became popular with the ladies.
High heels have probably reached their penultimate when it comes to crazy designs, and I say this only because it’s actually — barely — possible to walk in these shoes. High heels have come to represent an almost awkward pinnacle of beauty standards that defy common sense. Over in eastern Europe, many jobs requires all women employees to wear high heels at all times…even when it comes to walking to work on icy roads. According to The Sun, over in Russia high-heeled ladies are “Russian” to the finish line in a high heeled race hosted by Glamour magazine. Yay, a pun…
Van der Vyver graduated from the Gerrit Rietveld Academie in Amsterdam. Her work, including “Scary Beautiful,” can be found her website, cargocollective.com. She explained her motivation for creating these Edward Scissorfeet backwards high heels to Yahoo! Shine:
“After working in fashion for seven years, and therefore being well aware of the manipulation images in fashion suffer for a perfect result, I still compare myself to them and other current beauty ideals. My frustration with my own inability to overcome these feelings of inadequacy was what brought ‘Scary Beautiful’ into fruition. The shoes formed part of my graduation project that was a result of my thesis. The conclusion of my thesis investigation was that people are not satisfied with what they look like, and that perfection, according to the beauty and fashion standards, has reached a climax. Humans are playing God by physically and metaphorically perfecting themselves. Beauty is currently at an all time climax, allowing this project to explore what lies beyond perfection. Scary Beautiful challenges current beauty ideals by inflicting an unexpected new beauty standard.”
The video presentation she created actually won a design prize at Gerrit Rietveld Academie as a form of art rather than as a serious fashion statement. I laughed out loud when watching this video. Just think of the reaction if super models waddled down the runway sporting a pair. Although, I can actually imagine Lady Gaga shuffling along in a zombie-like stupor in these crazy high heels.
What do you think about Scary Beautiful and it’s intended critique of how crazy fashion has become in modern society?