When a shoe designer is as creatively outlandish as Kobi Levi, making stilettos in which the heel looks like a wad of bubble gum stretching up from the street or the skinny pink leg of a flamingo, it’s not much of a surprise that the rest of the world wants to experience his footwear.
Now shoppers at London’s high-end Selfridges department store get to have a look at Levi’s designs in a pop-up boutique that opened Monday in the store’s Shoe Galleries.
With 25 styles — including the $1,400 yellow Banana (worn by Whoopi Goldberg at a film opening); the above-mentioned $2,240 Chewing Gum, a high-heeled sneaker; the $3,080 Blond Ambition styled after Madonna’s early 1990s look; and the latest design, the $1,540 Rooster Brown design (also in Rooster Red and Chicken) created for the Selfridges sale — Levi’s limited edition selection is exclusive to Selfridges, with only twenty of each available globally. It’s the first time that Levi is selling his designs in a brick-and-mortar store.
“We’re excited to bring Kobi Levi’s designs to a wider audience as the first UK stockist of the collection,” said Helen Attwood, buying manager for Shoes at Selfridges, who first caught sight of Levi’s footwear art in a magazine. “Kobi’s work is a perfect fit for the Shoe Galleries, which was designed to be a home for the most creative and pioneering talent in footwear design.”
A graduate of Jerusalem’s Bezalel Academy of Arts and Design, Levi first worked for Skins Footwear, a revolutionary orthopedic footwear company that has since been liquidated, before going out to work on his own designs. For Levi, the shoe is his canvas. The trigger for a new design comes when an idea, concept or image comes to mind, and the end result is a “wearable sculpture.”