I’ve Been Schooled on Birkenstocks


It all started with Celiné. A french label loved for its casual french luxury. Commandeering the Birkenstock headquarters and hijacking what might be the ugliest shoe trend to ever hit the streets in the ’70s, Céline wrapped the dreaded hippie slide in fur and smooth black leather, got rid of the hardware and easily charged a cool $1K. Women went crazy. The furkenstock sold out. It was 2013.

Paula took the plunge. I looked the other way.

I didn’t get it then. I get it now. School has been the impetus. What I once couldn’t stand, I now need to stand.

I can’t wear heels, my shoe of choice, while standing at an easel for 8 hours drawing nude people. I wear my Rhilene’s. A DIY pair of poor man Celine’s custom made by Steve Madden x Rhianna.

Now I want the real deal. But they’re gone.

Part of me feels like an old lady or even worse, a follower, if I acquiesce and hop on the now explosion of trending Birkenstock alternatives. Even Birkenstock has an alternative. The Darthenstock.

Global warming is real. And Birkenstocks are now considered a “classic sandal” – cool even, as even the New Yorker recently gushed about them in their “Happy Ugly Feet” piece. God help us. Which ones do I get? The Darthenstock, Giamba’s Glitterstock or Lady Maranga’s custom-made Birkenfurry as seen below, which can be seen and ordered through FurryLAB on Facebook.

The struggle is fur-real.

Lady Maranga "Birkenfurry"

2 Responses

  1. aratner@nyc.rr.com'

    Hi Jennifer, from NYC! Look on ebay. I have seen them now and then. They won’t be cheap, but you can satisfy your yen for them. I myself, after buying the black Givenchy copies from Barneys, felt they didn’t have “it” & found a pair of Celine non-fukenstocks on ebay. They fit kind of loosely & have that slouchy Celine-y appeal. I wear them around the house, where I’ve been a lot lately due to my back problem. Mine are in white patent with a black innersole & base and contrast nicely with black socks and anything else. And they were about half price of retail. I swore to myself that I wouldn’t buy into this trend but as the season went on last summer, my eye changed & I started liking them. Also, have you seen the Sacai version? They look like Birkenstocks but with a platform.

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