With my last shoe post a while back now, I felt I had to fill the footwear void. I was having withdrawals. That dry patch is well and truly over thankfully with my latest obsession – Kobi Levi.
Kobi, a jewellery and accessories designer graduate from Jerusalem’s Besalel Academy of Art and Design, has produced his very own pieces of shoe-art that, I think it’s fair to say, have very much slapped the shoe world in the face with a huge dose of creative tongue-in-cheek cheekiness. His designs are less shoes, more pieces of carefully thought out, carefully constructed and highly provocative creations. He’s taking footwear to the next level. Fashion has gone so avantgarde, so ‘different’, so extreme over the last few years, why not shoes too? Yes, we’ve all seen the wonders of a pair of Balenciaga’s, and we’ve all drooled over the YSL Tributes, but there’s something about a hand-crafted piece of fashion that ticks all the boxes. Isn’t there?
Wasn’t it Carrie Bradshaw herself who once said that a good pair of shoes can make any outfit? I’m pretty sure her mouth would drop wide open at the sight of a pair of Kobi Levis. I know mine did. It’s pretty safe to say that you would definitely build an outfit around these shoes and NOT the other way round. They speak for themselves.
I chatted to Kobi and asked him a few questions. Here’s what he had to say…
The Very: Is the foot your favourite part of the body?
Kobi: No it isn’t, one of the least favourite actually!
The Very: In relation to Christian Louboutin or Jimmy Choo, where would you like to be in the shoe designer circuit?
Kobi: Well, without sounding weird or full of myself (certainly not me), I want to create “my own circuit”. The designers you mentioned are amazing, and mainly because they have their own ‘design language’ this is what makes each good designer unique. I think each designer is creating their own special style, and that is what I’m doing as well. These shoe creations are showing my design approach.
The Very: Where does your inspiration come from? Is it as easy as the things around you?
Kobi: Sometimes it is easy, an idea that just comes from nowhere and then I evolve it into a design. Sometimes it is more about concentrating on a chosen theme and designing accordingly.
The Very: Should we take your footwear seriously in terms of fashion and trends, or are they more ‘fun’ show pieces?
Kobi: They are “art to wear” – real, wearable shoes with a difference. And with a sense of humour (even when there is a deeper concept to focus on)
The Very: What designer shoes do you like? If there was one designer you’d like to feature your shoes on the catwalk, who would it be?
Kobi: Difficult. There are a lot of great and talented designers. It can be a piece from way in the past, to very modern to completely avantgarde. I like Mcqueen’s latest shoes (and a lot of his footwear designs from the past), I like Loutboutin’s super elegant creations, Vivienne Westwood’s ‘super elevated’ shoes, Thea Cadabra “The maid” design, Marloes Ten Bhomer’s work, Rene Van der Berg’s designs. All very different and talented.
Lovely reader… all hail the shoe-art God!
To check out more of his amaze creations, check out Kobi’s website here. Kobi has told me that custom made shoes can be discussed and all pairs so far are on of a kind. He is looking into the options of a limited edition production of some of them due to popular demand. Get in contact with Kobi through his website.