Never one to shy away from throwing curveballs, Balenciaga has upped the ante when it comes to divisive footwear with its take on the classic ballerina pump. Dubbed the “Leopold Ballerina,” the delicate slip-on comes in either “Turquoise,” “Black” or “Light Beige,” and welcomes another sprig of argument-inducing creativity from Demna.
Many might see this $925 USD slip-on — seen in various looks during Summer 2023‘s “The Mud Show” – as an odd shoe choice for Balenciaga, a brand that’s built a reputation on bulky sneakers and bulbous boots. Others might recognize the changing times, à la Vogue‘s article in which one of its writers road-tested a pair of similar pumps from MM6 Maison Margiela’s SS23 show, deeming the movement a positive one, adding “it’s encouraging to see that certain fashion houses are defying gender norms by offering styles in a range of sizes, which would not have been the case 10 years ago.”
Either way, it seems designers left and right are pointing their toe into the world of ballet — Laura and Deanna Fanning of Kiko Kostadinov’s womenswear division makes some wild ones, as does Simone Rocha.
Balenciaga takes a subtler approach, crafting the pairs from satin per tradition. All three colorways sport the same design, with a bow gracing the rounded toe and a worn-out effect detailing the uppers. The 100% polyester shoe is lined with a branded leather insole and a stuck to a thin branded black outsole.
Balenciaga’s $925 USD “Leopold Ballerina” can be seen above and bought online or in boutiques globally now, in sizes EU 39-46.
For more wild slip-ons, check out the new adidas HYPERTURF Adventure.