On High Ground

The “Pigalle”: the Louboutin’s iconic shoes

Before the new pandemic-induced restrictions, the Palais de la Porte Dorée welcomed the Louboutin exhibition “L’Exhibition[niste]”. A great opportunity to get going and go admire these now emblematic shoes, pride of the French fashion: the “Pigalle”. Created by Christian Louboutin for his Autumn collection 2004/2005, these black pumps with a meaningful name have become the mythical red-sole shoes. Revisited and reinterpreted each season by the creator, this timeless piece is undeniably of a blazing modernity. Focus on a stileto which gives us a rush of pleasure.

By Kassandre Fradelin, Chloé Redler
In Paris, the Palais de la Porte Dorée welcomed before its pandemic-related closure an exhibition dedicated to the ultra-creative and fanciful world of Christian Louboutin – Video: Youtube channel of the Palais de la Porte Dorée.

Red Carpet for the Louboutin “Pigalle”

L'iconique "Pigalle" de Louboutin de 12 c
The 12-cm version of the “Pigalle” with its red sole emblematic of the Louboutin house – © Jean-Vincent Simonet.

While – alas – not on our own feet, we have obviously seen the “Pigalle”, paired with the closet of the greatest celebrities. From Emma Stone to Victoria Beckham, including Anne Hathaway, Katy Perry, Beyoncé, or even Dita Von Teese, these shoes take strides full of poise on the Red Carpet. With the particular gift of perfectly finalizing any attire and of sublimating the legs, it was first presented in the early 2000s by Christian Louboutin.

The “Pigalle”, the woman of Paris

Christian Louboutin à l’exposition the Exhibition[niste]
Christian Louboutin at the Exhibition[niste] exhibition – © Courtesy of Christian Louboutin.

Born from the fantasist and magical inventiveness of the shoe designer, the idea for the “Pigalle” came to him while he was at the Foire du Trône, by studying the peculiar gait of a prostitute nearby the funfair. Luxurious and mythical Parisian district, Pigalle can now literally be at your feet…

The fabrications secrets of the “Pigalle”

La confection de la Louboutin dans les ateliers parisiens de la Maison
The “Pigalle” is made in the Louboutin ateliers, a true French savoir-faire- © Philippe Garcia.

Having become iconic shoes in but a few years, the “Pigalle” owes its success to its emblematic red sole as much as to its fabrication method. A pair takes around a week to complete, between the pattern cutting, the stitching, the leather cutting, the sewing and the shaping. All of this is realized by highly qualified artisans in a Parisian workshop. And to prove how global is the “Pigalle” phenomenon, it must be known that there are 156 Louboutin boutiques around the world…

Please find the boutiques list in this link.

The “Pigalle” in all its forms

L'escarpin "Follies" de Christian Louboutin
Embodying the savoir-faire of the Maison Christian Louboutin, the “Follies” pump sublimates the look of the foot with its minimalistic lines and its Super Loubi coloured and fun print of Japanese influences.

The renowned collection encompasses two distinct lines. On one side, the “Pigalle” with only black or flesh-coloured shoes. On the other, the “Pigalle Follies” – drawing its name from the famous Parisian cabaret – is a line where the creator’s eccentricity knows no bounds: flamboyant colours, stripes, glitters, golden studs, pink, blue, green velvet, etc.

L'escarpin Pigalle Follies de Christian Louboutin
Elegant and refined, the Pigalle Follies Plume is decked out this season in Canopée green velvet calfskin dotted with small golden studs inspired by the plumetis technique. This stiletto sits atop a 10 cm heel and has a scalloped line that accentuates the sophisticated look of the foot.

Each available in four heel heights: 4,5 cm, 8,5 cm or 10 cm. And of course, for the bolder ones, the dizzying 12 cm!

“Pigalle” Passion but not only…

La collection "Nudes" de Christian Louboutin
Four Desgrastrass pumps colours of the “Nudes” collection presented at the L’Exhibition[niste] exhibition – © Jean-Vincent Simonet.

Christian Louboutin is also the creator of many well-known models such as the “Kate” or the “Hot Chick”. The “Nudes” series based on the various natural skin tones is also owed to this genial designer. Unveiled in 2013, it now boasts eight tones declined in pumps, sneakers and accessories.

The “Nudes” celebrate diversity since their launching. Designed to create the illusion of legs going for miles, these pieces enhance the modern dressing – Video: Youtube channel Christian Louboutin.

Finally, the last novelty of the brand is the “Loubishark”. Riding on the major trend of sneakers, these unusual baskets flaunts a sole similar to shark’s teeth… A flashy red sole, of course!

New darling of high-end sneakers, the “Loubishark” is creatively daring with its new “shark teeth” sole – Video: Youtube channel Christian Louboutin.
La "Stiil Life" de Chrisitian Louboutin
High perched, the Louboutin “Still Life” fascinates by its coloured fantasy and its extravagant details – © Jean-Vincent Simonet.

Louboutin’s work and imagination put on a show at the Palais de la Porte Dorée.

Following the new Covid-19 restrictions, patience will be needed before coming back to see “L’Exhibition[niste]”. Set at the Palais de la Porte Dorée, it stays true to the facetious designer’s humour while presenting its creations and inspirations in a playful and educational way.

For more information on the exhibition new measures: www.palais-portedoree.fr/en

Did you know?

Les mules Louboutin pour femmes spécialement confectionnées pour le Royal Mansour Marrakech
Capsule collection for the Royal Mansour Marrakech.
The patterns of the women’s mules are inspired from the Arabo-Andalusian decoration of the Moroccan palace.

Always welcoming fancy designs and technical challenges, Christian Louboutin has recently chosen to use his talent for the Royal Mansour Marrakech, to create two exclusive and original models. For women, a pointed-toe flat mule, with mosaic patterns (€800). For men, a slipper shaped like a classic loafer with black suspenders, topped with a star referencing the Moroccan flag as well as the French brand’s iconic écusson (€500). A stunning tribute to the Moroccan crafts blended with the unconditional Louboutin savoir-faire.

Christian Louboutin invites to discover his Women & Men Spring-Summer 2021 collections through his own digital world – Video: Youtube channel Christian Louboutin.


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