Walk a mile in someone shoes, the adage goes, before you pronounce judgment upon them. Well, I have tried walking in Chloe Green's shoes but I barely made it to the end of the road.
Green, 20, is the daughter of Sir Philip Green, the Topshop tycoon and fearsome fashion mogul behind the Arcadia group, which is home to the high street stores Miss Selfridge, Dorothy Perkins, Wallis and Burton.
Better known until now for appearing in the reality TV series Made in Chelsea, Chloe made her first foray into the family business this week, with an eight-piece footwear collection available in her father's many outlets.
CJG, after the designer's own initials, is a capsule of hyper-high heels and wedges for the ultra-glamorous; every style of footwear, be it stilettos or booties, is equipped with a towering platform that makes other vertiginous shoes on the market look practically sensible in comparison.
"My girlfriends and I sat down and spoke about shoes," Green says. "What we wanted, needed, and everything kind of started from there." It goes without saying that what the daughter of Britain's 17th richest man needs from a shoe is rather different from what the rest of us look for – these are not for you if you need to run for a bus, have to do your own supermarket shop, or are lowly enough to ever have to bend over.
But of course, walking is certainly not what these shoes are made for. They tap into exactly the sort of taxi-to-table lifestyle that seems so prevalent right now, despite the supposed "age of austerity". Just look at the guest list from Green's launch party last month: most of her Made in Chelsea chums, and a healthy smattering of faces from its rival series The Only Way is Essex (the common ones). Aspirational doesn't even begin to cover it.
"Designing my first shoe collection is a dream come true," Green adds. "Each shoe is named after someone special to me."
The gold peep-toe booties that I tried are dubbed "Tiger Lily" (£150), in homage to an unknown, but presumably rather glitzy, friend. Each pair in the collection is finished with a jade green, lacquered sole – a nod to the success of the scarlet soles of shoe-turier Christian Louboutin. Green knows her stuff.
The question is, though, can she design shoes? In a recent interview with Grazia, she laid bare her creative process: colouring in pre-printed templates. More traditional cordwainers need not worry then.
Shoppers are suckers for shoes: you get a lot of wear from them; they won't look any different if you get a bit fat; and they fulfil every last gaudy fashion fantasy that you dare not wear above your ankles. In that respect, she clearly has her father's eye for a prize.
But while Green's shoes may be high, they're far from the height of cool – which isn't to say they won't sell well among the clubbing classes. The exaggerated chunky soles and 14cm heels in the collection feel dated, but Green's fans won't care about that. And as I teeter ludicrously down the street, I certainly feel swayed by the power of celebrity. Swayed almost to the point of falling on my face.Reuse content