Jump to comment form
May 29, 2014 at 9:03 am
May 29, 2014 at 11:03 am
society pressures people to get peer approval by playing into certain stereotypes.
she’s wearing shorts, expensive and highly recognizable high heels and bag while pedaling. it is her decision and that’s fine.
but she is not an inspiration for me: i’d rather admire a girl who finds middle ground between what fashion/society dictates and common sense/personal comfort. or even go all the way and completely ignore what fashion dictates. after all, those are our style heroes: the fearless few w/ a set of style references of their own! :)
May 29, 2014 at 12:44 pm
May 29, 2014 at 2:36 pm
I agree with you Andrea and Stella! I am very weary of fashion being defined by hype and marketing of ridiculously expensive clothing and shoes that to me, reflect a level of narcissism that is unappealing. But that’s just me and of course, I don’t have to look, do I? But I had to lend support to very cogent thoughts by both of you and say that I couldn’t agree more!
May 29, 2014 at 7:30 pm
I would still look at and love this photo if she wasn’t wearing a single thing!
Wait. I was just trying to say that street style is working with what you have. Does that make me sound better?
May 29, 2014 at 3:11 pm
Then go look elsewhere. I am sure there are plenty of blogs that fit your narrow definition of what isn’t tiered. Its really irritating to see people try to pick and pick at things from sheer jealousy. Especially people who post in this exact slot on every picture. Expensive, inexpensive, who cares. If its beautiful, or interesting its good. I have never found the middle ground to be that interesting. Nor do I consider people who simply wear whatever they want to that inspiring; At least not unless they happen to be someone like Steve Jobs.
May 30, 2014 at 12:35 pm
I am writing back again to concede that you are absolutely correct and my perspective was ill thought out. While I do abhor the level of narcissism in our society, it is true that thee is a blend in these photos and one wouldn’t enjoy–intellectually or otherwise, photos being edited to be politically correct. I should have paused and pondered before speaking as I would hate a world where we don’t fantasize on some level! Mea culpa!
June 1, 2014 at 2:50 am
Why get so hot under the collar because someone doesn’t see things your way? I think it’s a good point being made; that fashion has started expressing itself more through money and hype than through originality and imagination. It’s worthy of discussion. I don’t know why you think their comments come from jealousy. They’re just not from your point of view. Not everyone sees the purpose of fashion the same way; some use it to verify their status; some use it to make other people feel inferior; some use it to have a good time or just express themselves. Then there are the ones who don’t think about fashion at all (99% of American women), which is what really bothers me. Throw a scarf on! Get a pair of nice flats. Though we are the richest country in the world, we are certainly also the ugliest as far as aesthetics are concerned.
May 29, 2014 at 3:30 pm
So which is the problem? The shorts? The shoes? What “stereotype” do you see here? How is this not a middle ground between fashion, and common sense? It seems EXACTLY that to me. And how do people who ignore fashion take a risk? The suburban neighborhood I grew up in was filled to the brim with people who were completely ignoring fashion. I wouldn’t call any of them fearless. Quite the contrary. They were wonderful people, but quite fearful of being judged as too fashion forward.
I would say if you have this ideal in your mind, and nothing else will do, then start your own blog, but then I am sure you have one.
May 30, 2014 at 1:31 pm
The thing about this whole conversation is that YOU know they are Valentino heels. I don’t know all of the products and all of the brands and so, for me, they were just T-strap heels with studs, no idea what they cost, just interesting and unusual, even risky, to see them on a girl on a bike. Are you able to ignore labels and evaluate a look? Does your opinion of a person’s look change if they are wearing a no-name item with similar style to the brand you know? If so, you should evaluate yourself and the lens you are viewing others from.
June 2, 2014 at 9:46 am
Exactly. Thank you.
June 3, 2014 at 2:40 am
I completely agree. Personally I had no idea those shoes had any kind of well-known brand. To me, they are just pretty and match the outfit.
However, I will always question the fact that someone whould even wear high heels to ride a bicycle. Cute? Yes. Safe? Not so much. For her or other people around.
March 6, 2015 at 2:01 pm
Speaking of unsafe… the shoes and the head phones are extremely dangerous to wear while riding on the street with cars and pedestrians. Fashion over safety? That’s crazy to me. Also, I agree… labels are not what’s important here.
July 14, 2014 at 12:34 am
I DO know the Valentino shoes but I DIDN’T notice they were those b/c the whole outfit and the bike were more interesting than the shoes themselves.
Really what’s the problem here???
June 2, 2014 at 2:00 pm
Agree very much! I don’t care very much for labels, a great deal of designer items are extremely over priced and lack quality or care in construction. Examine the fabric, turn the garments inside out, check the linings and you’ll see what I mean… and yet people willingly pay thousands or tens of thousands to wear that certain logo… As for shoes, watch how fast the soles separate and look for the sloppy glue jobs but expect to pay thousands… Some people are just really desparate to wear the logos. You could spend the same amount of money for some items and have them individually tailor made. I’d love to see this become a trend! They’d fit better in a lot of cases and you could add a touch of individuality. I like to look at the blog pics and see what their general style is. In the original pic I first noticed her jacket , hair and bike. Either her shoes weren’t even on my radar or I subconsciously filtered them out.
To the commenter:
True style has very little to do with what you spent or what logo you may be wearing… really stop and look at all the diversity of Scott’s pictures (on this blog and in his books) from all over the globe and you will see this.
June 18, 2014 at 8:19 pm
Is she a woman overloaded with the latest “iconic” wardrobe pieces hovering around fashion shows? No she is not…this is simply a street image about someone who is culturally pre-disposed to dressing well and appreciating quality by someone who notices the finer details such as the overall feel (beyond the outfit). What is the problem here? The fact she is wearing a recognisable pair of shoes which were made “famous” by the so called fashionistas or something else…they are beautiful shoes and have been seamlessly integrated into the rest of her understated outfit. What about the tiny ring on her right hand which is very delicate or the healthy, thick shiny hair, or the scarf that is barely unnoticeable yet it further adds to the feel of the image and draws your eye in closer, what about the shadows on the pavement, perfect focus and good use of depth of field? I cannot help but ask myself what is she thinking? What is she looking for? Is she experiencing the same “parking” issues people in cars do in peak hour? In attempting to sound profound about “societal and peer pressure” there is so much that has been missed in this image. Perhaps The Sartorialist’s thinking is on a whole different level to the littleaesthete. Perhaps for him the clothes are an element of something larger rather than the only focus. And let’s not forget, for someone who is going on about her daily business (not lining up at the fashion show), she looks fabulous and probably could not care less about whether she is an inspiration to other aspiring “fashionistas” nor is she likely to be inspired by the same (otherwise, she would not be seen in shoes that are not from current collection – I doubt very much these are still making the “fashionista” circus (pun intended).
May 29, 2014 at 11:26 am
my eye went at first on the Valentinos, because I always check out if the woman on the bycicle is wearing heels ( I really envy them for being able to do that :P) but of course not, I am sure you did not shot her cause she was wearing those shoes, but because you saw that image in that moment and wanted to capture it!
(by the way I love it!)
May 29, 2014 at 3:53 pm
High heels are not a problem on bicycle, I do that almost every day. The only thing you really cannot wear are pencil skirts.
July 14, 2014 at 12:36 am
Hahaha, so true!
June 8, 2014 at 10:33 am
It’s not the sartorialist tho. I am not the commenter, and I still enjoy my daily dose of fashion blogs, but I see where she is coming from, because for the last few years , things have drastically changed. Street style went from ” work with what you got ” to ” go buy these shoes, that bag, that jacket, because you may get pictured “. Fashion industry has tightened it’s grip around the consumers throat, so hard that at times every picture, every image, every attractive young man or woman feels like a walking billboard. I don’t agree with the angry tone of the commenter, or the wording for that matter, but you all need to calm down and see it through an average, dare I say broke, 23, 24 year old, who sees all these beautiful people in Valentino shoes and balenciaga bags all over.
May 29, 2014 at 9:09 am
I’m tired to feel a “common” fashionista just because I love some pieces that everybody loves too.
If you’re comfortable with your style you can wear both fashion and no-label together.
If you, instead, have to wear only no-label pieces just because it’s more intellectual, well to me, you loose the freedom to wear something just because you like it (famous, or not!).
May 29, 2014 at 12:53 pm
Or, if you “have to wear only no-label pieces” you might just not be able to afford anything else. Check your privilege, not everyone has the “freedom” to choose between $900 or $9 sandals.
May 29, 2014 at 3:46 pm
The test of one’s style is just how much creative impact you can achieve with $9. How hard is it to look great if you spend a fortune?
May 29, 2014 at 5:20 pm
you’d be surprised
May 30, 2014 at 5:25 pm
‘Style’ comes in many forms. Individuality, confidence, eccentricity, awareness, an intuition of colour…..etc, etc. As a personal opinion, I often find that those with the most cash look decidedly uninspiring and whether on this blog or in the street my eyes just pass on by.
May 31, 2014 at 5:19 pm
You can’t buy taste and personal style.
May 29, 2014 at 9:12 am
Actually this is a perfectly composed photo. I loved it when you posted it the first time . It took me a while to recognise the “fashionista” traits of valentino shoes and balenciaga bag which says so much more about the photographer than the subject matter which is after all fashion is it not ?!?
May 29, 2014 at 9:19 am
………also, untraveled people tend to have no appreciation of the different forms of common transport elsewhere. I love how, in Amsterdam, you see EVERYONE cycling, walking, taking trams etc so you get to see the rich pageant of people and their different styles.
I think you give a good cross section of street style.
May 29, 2014 at 9:22 am
I totally agree. we should find beauty in our ordinary daily
May 29, 2014 at 9:27 am
I have a lot of fav shots from this blog, actually, and I’m just a chick who grew up in the 90′s grunge era, knows nothing about fashion (I’m still a jeans and tee shirt girl) and still has no idea of the fashion culture outside of the U.S. I totally didn’t realize the to-go coffee thing was what was wrong in that one photo, I just went with, “she has no reflection” vampires, lol. so to see all the beautiful photos you take with fashions that I know nothing about (I am amazed when people can spot a label), but its like eye candy. I may know nothing about high-end fashion or the cultures it thrives in, but I enjoy watching from a birds eye view.
May 29, 2014 at 9:29 am
I didn’t even notice the shoes the first time you posted it, to be honest.
You keep doing what you do – it’s keeping me inspired to hop on my bike more often!
May 29, 2014 at 9:31 am
When I saw this pict I didn’t notice about the Valentino’s…but about the heels and the chic way of cycling.
Kisses from http://www.withorwithoutshoes.com
May 29, 2014 at 9:32 am
I think the critic was more directed to your blog than to the It-pieces we see everyday all over the internet.
Sure you can be inspired by everything, as you say, but it’s also true that lately your blog lacks of originality and really often we see in here the same things we see in every other blog. Maybe there’s just a little delusion..
May 29, 2014 at 9:42 am
Have you really seen images from Peru or Morocco or Bali on other blogs like mine?
May 29, 2014 at 9:50 am
But it’s true that we don’t see so often photos from Europe or the US that are more ‘equivalent’ to you Peru/Morocco photos anymore, which is a shame…I think one aspect of inspiration that is magical is the knowledge that you can’t recreate a look wholesale, the anonymity of the people as well as the clothes they wear makes some of your photos particularly special for me…
May 29, 2014 at 11:24 am
I have to agree with Vero and Aurelie here. I have been a long time follower of your blog and have seen it change from a place that highlighted and celebrated the execution of inspiration to a place that now highlights more and more the inspiration directly in the form of the fashionista. The originality that comes from a personal interpretation of fashion inspiration is what is now missing in your blog. It’s lost it’s magic. I think that is what makes your images from Peru or Morocco or Bali so special, the fact that, at least for me, they serve as a reminder of what made this blog so special in the first place. At the same time though, it is sad that lately, you only seem to return back to the original spirit of your blog when you are physically removed from the west without access to the traditional fashionista.
I still really enjoy coming to your blog but sadly, I quickly scan whatever recent pictures you have put up and head straight for the archives. Your archives are what still make up my favourite blog till date.
P.S – I bet you are currently receiving much more traffic to your blog than you were in say, 2009. At the same time whenever I’m in your archives, I’m struck by the richness of conversation around each picture with comments usually numbering at around the 100 and over mark. Coincidence? I think not.
May 29, 2014 at 12:06 pm
There are far fewer fashionista now than in 2009. you can clearly see that in the blog and in my books. how many images of Carine did I run last year?
I think you do make a good point about comments. The difference between now and 2009 is simple, Instagram. the blog audience is very strong but people now comment a lot on instagram. A post I did on Monday had over 270 comments. The type of comments are different between the two formats but if you want a rich experience check compare and contrast the comments on them both.
May 29, 2014 at 12:30 pm
I agree with Cas. Although your blog is still by far the best around in its category, I feel a lot less inspired by your pictures than before. My eye is also always more attracted to the right-hand section of the page with links to the archives -I can spend a lot of time going through them and I think that’s what is making me coming back to the blog, hoping I will be amazed again. I understand your reaction to the comment, but maybe it’s a way to question your art as well – and that can never be a bad thing.
May 29, 2014 at 12:51 pm
for Cas and Leonore
I’d love to see some of the images in the archive you find inspiring. you can send them to firstname.lastname@example.org
May 30, 2014 at 9:31 am
I feel like Cas and Léonore have hit upon a point. But that said, I was trying to think about why I might feel this way. And I think part of the reason why may be because of the huge popularity of street style blogs, and street style in general.
I think the Sartorialist is still by and far the best, and the photography is wonderful. But I find myself, on the street as well as on the web, looking at people and wondering “did they get up this morning dressed just to get photographed?”And of course it is fine if they did, but personally, I find there is something wonderful in romantically believing that the people shot just *happen* to have a wonderful, different sense of style. And, with street style everywhere, it is harder to believe that as people try harder and harder to get noticed. And the quirky and unassumingly stylish become better documented.
July 11, 2014 at 7:26 pm
I thought I was the only weirdo who adores the Archives! Boy, what a pleasure to watch early 2006 pitcures… For me, it’s a melancholic attempt to slow down the time. It’s passing rather quickly on the Web… Never thought I would be so tangled in nostalgia, which I used to immaturely despise. Lame really.
What I’m trying to say is… a potential transition on Instagram is kind a harsh for me still. Late bloomer, I guess. ;-)
May 29, 2014 at 12:22 pm
i think this comment is unfair. global village that the western world has now become, there is of course a certain sense of homogeny in fashion circles. but one could say the same about any group following a set of leaders. people group together under shared interests, tastes, and ideologies, they want the sense of belonging. any study of anthropology will tell you that, including this blog.
i would also point out that in the sartorialist’s documented trips to (most recently) the mennonite community in the north-east US, bali, and morocco, the pictures were the antithesis of homogenized elistist fashion, and which demonstrated amazing style. and the demonstrated style showed some sense of homogeny itself, within the context of the subjects’ culture.
my point is, this blog, while showing a lot of shots from various fashion weeks, also looks at lots of people in all locations, who are not particularly “known” western fashion celebrities. that you don’t like that there are “elitist” fashion pieces that are adopted from fashion houses into people’s daily wardrobes is your style point of view, but doesn’t damn this blog as irrelevant.
as a woman who wears plus size, i could complain that i am not represented on this blog… except that’s bull. this blog isn’t about being fair about size etc., it’s about the visual composition, it’s about how someone uses their apparel to trancend fashion and demonstrate style.
just my 2 cents. big fan, mr. sartorialist. :)
An articulate, and not particularly aggressive riposte
May 30, 2014 at 4:09 am
Apart from the fact that style is, in fact, very often in the detail…
I don’t understand that anger. I love the original photo! I don’t comment often but I read this blog every day and respond emotionally to many photos, but entirely disagree with that the photos don’t feature “real” people, rich and poor, designer looks as well as thrift shop finds, and whatever is available in some places.
I wish you had not felt compelled to change the shoes in the image. There’s no need to defend your work. Show what you see!
Yes! You only live once, anyway. Why not just chill out and do what you can to look good?
May 29, 2014 at 9:43 am
Mi è piaciuto questa foto prima e mi piace ancora di più adesso. la donna ha stile, atteggiamento e carattere.Beautiful :)
May 29, 2014 at 9:44 am
Ironically, the Valentino Rockstuds were the first thing I noticed when i saw this pic posted originally… However: you can’t control what people wear in your pics, you just go for the visual, and you are the No 1 street photographer in the world, the very best, and you truly capture the authentic everyday style. Always admired your work, have both your books, follow you blog. There will always be people who are just not very positive. Ignore.
June 2, 2014 at 2:25 am
The No 1 street photographer is still Mr. Bill Cunningham, the original On The Street photographer for The New York Times.
May 29, 2014 at 9:45 am
would you have taken this same photo and posted it if she had been wearing crocs?
May 29, 2014 at 9:52 am
Crocs are a totally different shape than those shoes. Crocs wouldn’t have made her legs look good, so NO.
May 29, 2014 at 12:46 pm
Cros are ugly, obviously not. This is a fashion focus blog, not a blog for “How to be comfortable while gardening”.
May 29, 2014 at 3:08 pm
May 30, 2014 at 6:21 am
Where is the like button :-D Crocs definitely don’t belong in a place like this
The problem with the photo, in my view, is that it’s a little confusing whether this is a real life street shot or a model posing. It appears to be the latter. Any cyclist would know that those expensive heels are a simply preposterous way to ride a bike and dangerous to boot. Let alone all the chain grease that girl is going to have on her right leg once she gets to wherever she is going. But yes she does look great.
May 29, 2014 at 9:57 am
she not a model, this was a totally real shot.
Anyone that has watched the blog knows I have lots of shots of women riding a bike in heels, it’s not uncommon in Europe.
May 29, 2014 at 12:20 pm
Scott, in my opinion, your phoptographs in places like MIlan and Paris are inspiring. You show people who dress with great style but also show people who may be inspiring. For me, I love the fashion, but I also appreciate all your photographs, even if I may not always agree.
and p.s. I love this photo!
June 3, 2014 at 4:50 am
Bob, it’s true. I’m from Milan, and it is usual to go to work by bike… And it is usual to go to office in high heels. I do it, too. I haven’t got these legs, so I do not figure so well like this girl, but in Milan we are many “chic” women in bicycle
May 29, 2014 at 4:15 pm
Obviously not a cyclist yourself or you would immediately notice the chain guard preventing the possibility of grease contacting her leg/shoes/trousers/dress/bag etc etc.
May 29, 2014 at 9:55 am
Being able to buy and wear designer stuff doesn’t particularly means you have style or a shot turns out beautiful. This photos isn’t only about the shoes or the bag, but about the complete picture including what’s happening on the background, the light and her total appearance. I can understand how people don’t like blogs where people wear designer wear all of the time because it’s out of their reach but in this case it isn’t only about the outfit, it’s everything. Beautiful photo, as always! xx
May 29, 2014 at 9:56 am
You are extraordinary in finding beauty where others only can see poverty or “runaway pieces”
Please, don’t let those comments take away the good energy you have.
Miss your post on Monday.
When I first the saw the image, my take was not on the ubiquity of the Valentino shoes or her pedigree. I admired her casual unpretentious elegance and the overall confidence en route to her destination.
May 29, 2014 at 10:00 am
Okay she is beautiful but nonetheless she looks “real” to me. It’s an amazing photo and I think the commentator is a bit sad cos she can’t afford a pair of Valentino’s. I will never get tired of seeing them.
May 29, 2014 at 10:13 am
Your blog continues to inspire me, designer or not. Who knows, she may have saved up for a year to buy those shoes, or maybe they were a gift from a suitor ;). These images are about imagination and they all tell their own unique story. Stay the course!
May 29, 2014 at 10:14 am
I think this person is, as you say, looking for a reason to be negative. You had all sorts of pictures of those folks from the little village, Peru, was it? They certainly weren’t wearing designer togs. Yet the way they combined things was so interesting and thought-provoking. In this world of great discount and second-hand shops, anyone can create the looks we see on the street-we just need to make the effort!
May 29, 2014 at 10:15 am
I thought it was a nice picture. She could have Valentino’ed her ass off and I would have not noticed–this rider has great legs.
I don’t get what the commenter’s rant was about…people do have to wear clothing in order to be comfortable and socially compliant, and there are makers of clothes that do them in a consumable volume worldwide–what one chooses to wear is totally their choice (and their comfort)–so really, what is the issue? I think someone (this commenter) needs to examine their attitude towards assessing what is around them if it inflames them so much, and hesitate to comment on it.
May 29, 2014 at 10:23 am
Fashionista indeed, Valentino heels blurred, Balenciaga still on the shoulder. ;)
May 29, 2014 at 10:24 am
I don’t get where this anger is coming from … Why follow a blog you don’t like anymore?
And as far as I’m concerned, style is not about labels, style is about mixing and letting your creativity speak. It may come with or without designer labels … Style isn’t about that. “Fashion dies but style remains”
I always find your work very inspiring and refreshing and some gorgeous designers pieces never hurt anyone.
Keep going ;)
May 29, 2014 at 10:25 am
The real star of this photo is the bike. It’s awesome and she’s luckier to own this bike than to own the designer shoes and bag.
May 29, 2014 at 11:35 am
Initially, I wanted to comment about the awesomeness of the bike too (chain guard, fenders, rack, head light!).
May 29, 2014 at 10:26 am
i was so busy admiring her legs that I did not notice her shoes….
that said: I most enjoy street style photos of people with whom I can identify- generally regular people of limited financial means who manage to turn themselves out stylishly with a thrift shop find or a humble h and m button down.
to do more with less is always an admirable skill, and I think that is the point I take away from this comment about the Valentinos.
May 29, 2014 at 10:38 am
The best part about this image is that she is wearing the Rockstuds with a total normal outfit. Yes, she also has a Balenciaga bag, but what I love about this woman is that she isn’t scared to wear her shoes on a bike – she invested her money in them and she will wear them wherever and whenever she wants to!
May 29, 2014 at 10:49 am
I am intrigued by the photos of the women wearing tight clothes and heals while biking. I too bicycle to work at times but am careful on what I choose to wear, since a too tight dress restricts movement while pedaling and a shoe with too high an arch or heel makes the soles of my feet sore. I also have lovely bags but don’t like to carry them on my body while biking but instead strap them on the back of the bike. But I do like to look pretty while biking. Hey, I say cheers to the ones who suffer through it.
June 4, 2014 at 5:31 pm
This is Italy. In Italy you see men riding a bike or a moped to work in the morning wearing cream linen suits and white shoes. They’re always spotless. I have no idea how they do it.
May 29, 2014 at 10:51 am
Hmm. Careful Scott. I sense a defensiveness and just a tinge of bitterness in your replies here. I want to encourage you – you do post some wonderful original photos. I’ve been reading your blog for years now and just like so many others, I get ideas from seeing the things that other people do in their day-to-day lives.
However, and perhaps this is part of a much bigger conversation, so many of us are reaching for some level of personal expression when we choose what we’re going to wear each morning but what we’re actually doing is choosing the day’s uniform. We humans are a tribal bunch. I look at the photos on this blog or a hundred others and I see tribe members identifying themselves – urbanite, hipster, artist, bohemian, academic, suburban etc. Maybe it’s unconscious. Maybe we don’t intend to wear our flags on our backs but we do.
I also think that in North America and western Europe in particular, our pool of pleasing is extraordinarily shallow. There are certain expectations if we’re courting a stylish impression. Your photos, while very lovely in the main, also hew quite closely to this ideal. I know you’ve done photos from Peru, Bali and of the Amish people and perhaps you feel that these photos help to diversify your blog. Unfortunately, because so many of your other photos fall neatly into the “fashion” niche as defined by NYC, Milan, Paris, London or LA, these other photos take on a sort of voyeuristic tinge. . . I take pictures of interesting things I come across at the zoo not out of a sense of superiority but because I feel like I’m exploring something completely other than I am. I want to remember that otherness, the foreign-ness of the experience. It’s almost an anthropological thing. . . Rather than looking for connection, I’m highlighting the differences. Rather than seeking a greater understanding, I’m exploring the alien. As such, they hit a jarring note here. We recognize the difference in the photos but there’s no further development of the people themselves. I have no idea of them while, rightly or wrongly, when I look at this young lady on the bike, I feel as though I can more-or-less instantly peg her lifestyle, goals, personal preferences and taste. I see her tribe.
I wonder if I’m making sense to you?
I think an interesting area of exploration for a photographer such as yourself would be to go out and actively seek out those whose work compels them to wear a formal uniform – unlike the rest of us who believe we exercise choice when we assume our identities – people like nurses, police officers, doormen and construction workers. Find the tiny little touches that they incorporate into their rigid functionality that show their individuality. A hair style, the way the stickers are lined up on the hard hat, the choice of shoe or sock. Micro-fashion :-)
It’s just an idea. As fashion becomes more global, style often becomes more homogenized. It leads to frustration – but it’s a first world problem and should probably be remembered as such.
May 29, 2014 at 11:06 am
I remember seeing multiple photos here at various points of peoples wearing their uniforms with a unique twist.
May 29, 2014 at 11:15 am
Thanks for your thoughtful comment.
I never look for specific subject types however in my second book I did a page and little story about people wearing uniforms and highlighting basically the point you’re making.
May 29, 2014 at 1:20 pm
I’m sorry I missed them. I’m afraid I don’t own any of the books but I’m glad to hear that it’s an idea you’ve explored in the past. Perhaps it’s time to revisit it in this format – I’d love to see something like that.
I sometimes wonder about the photo subjects – what’s their favourite thing that they’re wearing and why? Sometimes understanding why someone made a choice makes the choice more attractive. It’s not the item, it’s what it represents. When we can plug in to someone else’s world for a minute, into the way they experience it, we can get a new appreciation for their style and see what’s actually individual about whichever flag they’re flying.
May 30, 2014 at 5:51 am
Bravo, Tara! Very thoughtful comment. You are right about the tribal concept, however, the more we are denying it, the more we become what we are predominately made for – social beings with 5 basic functions with a need to feel like a part of a group. Call it Balenciaga lover group, LV fan group or even brand lover group.
Fashion becomes global and some blogs try to create a need in people, so that bit is something I am having trouble accepting.
Scott makes great photos nonetheless.
May 29, 2014 at 10:59 am
I love the photo and her style.
I must admit my untrained eye didn’t even recognize the labels involved in it. And I don’t really care.
Thumbs up to her fearlessness about the danger of those expensive items getting spoiled in everyday use. Cool.
As to the people stating that heels and bikes don’t mix well.
They do! It’s far easier (and more comfortable) to cycle in heels than walk more than 200 metres in them. ;)
May 29, 2014 at 11:02 am
The U-lock is a pretty good tip off that it’s a real shot of an actual person doing her real-life thing. U-locks are used by those of us who need to keep our transportation safe.
They say “ignorance is bliss”… I know little about the big names in fashion and I just saw a great picture.
May 29, 2014 at 11:04 am
This reminds me of the importance of shooting what pleases you and not giving a damn about those who attempt to shoot you down. (Puns intended.)
May 29, 2014 at 11:08 am
To me, she would be equally stylish and the photo would have been equally cool if she had been wearing a pair of black sneakers. What makes this photo interesting is what it reflects: a young woman moving around without a chofer or a car, on her own, without wearing un-walkable heels, with a jacket to cover herself from the rain and the elements, and enjoying herself while listening to her favorite tunes. Hurray for that. The world needs more independent and active women. http://www.thepaarblog.com/
May 29, 2014 at 11:12 am
If you live in Milan, as I do, it’s not so difficult to see these people around the city and especially near Monte Napoleone in the heart of the city. They’re not models or fashion people…they just have taste in the way they dress.
If people are complaining about the shoots, then grab your camera, go around your city, open a blog and show us a better photos.
Criticizing from the sofa in front of your laptop is a common sport nowadays.
United Nations of Street Photography....
May 29, 2014 at 11:33 am
…you are not. Amen to that.
Keep it real and sharp as you have done (especially in the most recent years) and moderate away the trolls.
It’s your blog.
May 29, 2014 at 11:47 am
I found this link ” stylelikeu”. It’s all about personal creativity. Sometimes mixing labels with thrift finds but always interesting.
I follow and love Scott’s blog because of the freshness of his “eye”, his search for differences without fear (I remember the man in a skirt, black and white, taken in Italy that triggered tons of comments !!!) This is what I’m looking for : emotions. I want to be moved, surprised, shocked, amused, pleased. I want to feel alive when it comes to Art, I want to be taken out of my comfort zone.
Thank you Scott.
May 29, 2014 at 11:54 am
We are all entitled to our own opinion and that makes neither their or ours wrong, just different. That being said, once you De-Valentino-ized the pic (shoes) it’s really hard for me to see what was so awesome about it. I mean, I see women dressed like this in NYC almost daily, with the exact same sort of pieces; maybe different designers, but similar pieces and colors. I’m not saying that I don’t enjoy the glimpse into your daily life and into Milan, but I do get the expectation that the angry commentator is referring to.
Either way, I agree with Alice: shoot what pleases you and who cares what anyone thinks. They can simply go elsewhere.
May 29, 2014 at 11:57 am
I adore the concept of this photo riding a bike in heels, her style is definately unique.
May 29, 2014 at 12:05 pm
May 29, 2014 at 12:07 pm
The original photo was beautiful. This current photo makes me wonder why you did not obscure the Balenciaga hobo if you are trying to make a point. But it is a great debate. Although, in my opinion, unnecessary!
May 29, 2014 at 12:10 pm
In defense of photo #1, few things are more badass than a chic in those shoes on a bike. Plus the strength she is displaying in her stance reads absolutely natural, sexy and stylish.
Why would you visit a fashion blog and be disappointed by great style?
May 29, 2014 at 12:13 pm
I look at the blog for new style ideas that I can try. I don’t really care what brands are featured or if the women are models or not. The pictures inspire me to try things I wouldn’t have thought of on my own. Limiting the photos would mean limiting some of the real inspiration and usefulness of the blog.
May 29, 2014 at 12:21 pm
In defense of photo #1: Few things are more badass than Valentino on a bike. The strength she possesses in this moment takes the pressure off the brand and expands your gaze to her unique character and style.
It is a testament to that shoe that it has saturated the fashion world and can be worn so many ways. and feed so many peoples personal style choices.
When I view photos such as this I assume ( unless the subject truly is a well know fashion person) that perhaps this person depicted is someone like me – a ‘regular’ person who loves fashion and invests every once in a while in a designer piece to mix with the other more everyday and less obviously ‘designer’ pieces and takes joy in wearing them all mixed together.
There are a million sources to get ahold of real luxury pieces nowadays and I am a perfect example of this – I’m certainly not rich and certainly don’t have connections in the fashion industry but I still can be found wearing Prada oxfords and Marc Jacobs boots etc but I sourced them from places with prices I could afford or I saved and made a special purchase.
My point is that just because someone is pictured wearing those Valentino heels doesn’t mean she is some rich fashion connected person! She may have saved to buy them or like me is savy enough to have gotten them through her own sources and now takes joy in wearing them and feels glamourous, chic and confident when she has them on.
I’m not sure what the writer of that comments beef is – it’s unclear to me if their issue is really with your subject choices or with the subjects themselves wearing designer things and actually owning them?
Why does this make someone suspect and any less ‘real’ than anyone else ?
To me it’s inspiring to see an iconic or well known high fashion piece being worn in ‘real life’ and away from a slick advert or an editorial in Vogue or wherever.
Valentino heels on a bike rider – that moment is real life and that’s a real girl.
Touché I say.
May 29, 2014 at 12:23 pm
This is what I try to get my students to understand: the viewer’s interpretation is always based on their own personal paradigm(s). Many of the things we see in images are based on social codification, the ideas brought on by tradition, marked history, religion, et. al. Barthes said it best when he suggested that our images of the world create our own smaller worlds; and, our physical world is the universe. Therefore, our interpretations say so much of our own world. To live outside of that world is the great challenge. Everything is a text! We must learn to read others’ texts; for that is where we will grow in our understanding; anything less will only circumvent.
May 29, 2014 at 12:24 pm
The bicycle girl is also wearing the same Balenciaga bag that I purchased for a great price -on eBay !
May 29, 2014 at 12:25 pm
i think the point is that a lot of people dont find it interesting anymore to see a picture of a “young, modern woman getting herself to work in a way that is still feminine, effective and eco-friendly” simply because there are thousands of them.
I consider that your work reaches a higher quality when you grasp individuality over uniformity. It can perhaps be a girl in a bike with high heles going to work but I dont think this particular image is a prime example of that.
I would personally prefer quality vs quantity and I do agree with the comment cited in the sense that some of your images fit into a cliché of what Street blogging is.
As a final word, just to say thanks for some very inspirational pictures along this journey.
May 29, 2014 at 12:28 pm
I think the whole look is better with the nude shoe — regardless of whether there are Valentino or not — because then the whole thing is an interesting look in tone-on-tone khaki shades.
But, yes, I have to say, I agree wholeheartedly with the spirit of this comment. I used to check your blog regularly because I thought that you captured, well, not just fashion, but people that were making interesting choices in how the choose to represent themselves. But now, very little that you shoot interests me because almost everyone that you shoot is groomed and styled in a very typical, fashion magazine, or fashion lifestyle blog manner. Those shoes have been around for years, millions of people have them. People in khaki or safari style jackets are everywhere. That bag is very reminiscent of a Balenciaga moto bag (and it’s many copycats and variations), which also has been around for years. So, nothing about this is really all that interesting or all that “now.”
This is extrapolating from that impolite post, and maybe unfairly so, or giving that person who wasn’t very eloquent maybe more credit that he or she deserves, but I think what is interesting about New York (and other major cities) is that there are so many fashion tribes. That what is the height of stylish in one neighborhood is meaningless just blocks away in another. All of these overlapping, intersecting, competing fashion tribes are style choices are what make New York (and, again, other major cities) fantastic: Everyone isn’t aspiring to the same thing. I do think that you used to investigate this is a really great way. And of late, you’ve really stopped. You photograph people aspiring only to look stylish to others in the fashion world. I mean, thus, you only ever seem to shoot in Soho or the West Village and around fashion shows during the various fashion weeks.
There is a lot more to New York, Paris, Milan, London, and the world than the fashion world and the fashion employee industry aesthetic. It’s a shame it doesn’t seem to interest you anymore.
May 29, 2014 at 12:45 pm
Yes, Matteo got it perfectly right !
SHE is an Italian wealthy girl … that’s it. There, girls show off, it is part of their culture, they show their legs, wear heels, long hair and for sure make up …
It is solo true that it is “in the mood of this world” to comment from “your sofa” …
Have a great day Scott !
There seems to be a trend for women to declare who is a “real woman” and who isn’t. A woman who is beautiful, stylish and successful isn’t looked up to by women but instead hated as the “unattainable type”. Men respect other men who are handsome, stylish and successful. Why are women putting each other down? There are many types of women, putting one type down doesn’t bring your type up in the ladder of respectable women.
une chatte grise
May 29, 2014 at 12:54 pm
I actually find the image more inspiring now. I did appreciate the mix of glitzy shoes with casual vibe, but I usually find overdone, obvious “It” pieces tiresome, pretentious, and ultimately counter-productive. Young writers are often told, “Show–don’t tell”; while that’s not always good advice for fiction, I find that it works for fashion: I prefer a look that shows me creativity and/or a clear personal aesthetic sense, not one that uses an “approved” piece or trend to say “Look! I have style!”
May 29, 2014 at 12:58 pm
And what on earth is wrong with Valentino shoes? Just because they are recognizable they are a no-go? I like Valentino shoes and they are gorgeous on her. Oh no, let’s only approve on weird, vague, unknown, eccentric outfits. I think that would be artificial and blasé.
Don’t get me wrong: I love eccentric too, but I think this lady looks beautiful and balanced and it’s a great photo in light and composition. And to me that’s what inspiration is about….
Btw: I’m from Holland and all women cycle here on a daily base. We use the bike to go to work, bring our children to school, go to parties (because you can drink and ride a bike), with or without heels alike. And we don’t get grease on our legs. That’s such nonsense.
May 29, 2014 at 1:02 pm
Scott,I love your blog and your photos. I really can´t understand yet the problem about posting this one. Or any other in which you show us fashion people. Variety is one of the best parts of this blog!!!
An one more thing: what if the shoes were an imitation?? A well done ZARA or HM imitations of Valentino?? Does it make us watch this woman in a different way?? She would look as beautiful as she is.
Thank you for your job, Scott!!
May 29, 2014 at 1:09 pm
To me what was great with the original picture was it inspired me to use designer shoes in everyday life, with labeled clothes or not. Mostly always I save my designer shoes and/or bags for special occasions. ;)
Thanks always for your awesome takes. Stay cool.
Tiago de Abreu
May 29, 2014 at 1:27 pm
Scott , good afternoon . I have two questions ! As her shoe color changed in the two photos ? Do not think you redid the picture, is not it! Just wanted to understand why the effect ? Intrigued me !
Another thing , I’m photographer for Street Style in Brazil inspired by you ! Started his fault ! I follow your work and about the criticism , I think we all want the Scott before, the busted street approaches with less anonymity and more on the photos ! As for the brands , is bullshit ! As you said , be using a designer does not let less beautiful or more beautiful ! And what can we do if the people who cross our paths may adiquiri them ? If the picture be worth much matter if she wears a Versace dress or inherited from your grandmother! What fascinates me , when shooting , is the universe that involves choosing clothes that or what went on in that head aou choose one girl look , which she imagined to achieve? It turns out that we are so saturated with so much inequality that a photo can become ostentatious ! When not often ! But it would be really cool to see again the old scott ! Hugs and if you can your opinion on my site ! It is very important ! http://www.modaerua.com
May 29, 2014 at 1:36 pm
Attractive girl/woman + bike = Sartorialist photo. (He can’t help himself!) And that’s no complaint.
May 29, 2014 at 1:58 pm
Scott, please keep doing just what you’re doing…it is really important to ignore the shut-ins. It’s about the cut of the cloth, the long legs, the shoes that match ( or don’t), the sense of style….and the sheer fun. My God…when did we stop having fun?
May 29, 2014 at 2:04 pm
One of the things I appreciate about this blog is how it reveals the process of personal choice becoming fashion, and fashion becoming iconic, through the art of photography.
I’m continually inspired, often astonished, and sometimes challenged. Many thanks for your work, Sartorialist. Keep going!
May 29, 2014 at 2:19 pm
Look closely: The picture (top) you are commenting, amongst others about Valentino shoes, is EXACTLY the same as the one you posted a few days earlier, including the 2 persons vaguely in the background. Just the shoes of the girl in the pic are different: Same shape, different color… How on earth is that possible, unless someone is photoshopping? So much for authenticity and credibility!
May 29, 2014 at 3:55 pm
I think you missed the point!
May 29, 2014 at 2:23 pm
The person who commented with that angry sentiment made only one impression on me: She is angry at herself for wanting those shoes and doesn’t like it thrown in her face that a girl riding a bicycle to work in a simple (still, very cool) outfit (in Milan, no less) is wearing them as though they were no big deal at all. I would say her anger is coming from resentment in FEELING pressured, but I don’t think you are the one applying the pressure! To be fair, I noticed the girl’s bag first, because I’m looking for a casual-but-chic bag and liked her low-key vibe. I love the shoes, but that’s not where my eyes went to first, which I think proves that this would have been a stylish look whether it was $250 Tory Burch flats or $25 Havaianas.
May 29, 2014 at 2:25 pm
I loved the original image BECAUSE of the Valentinos! However…
I do understand her frustration, as it is well known that fashion bloggers now are supplied with clothing to get that “perfect street look” that Bill Cunningham and also you made famous. Of course, you’re not who I’m speaking of, but there are certain female bloggers who are given a slew of clothing to get photographed in, just like celebrities do…THAT is what has tainted the naturalness of what used to be special photographs. and that has NOTHING to do with the photo’s quality…its about the product placement that is now rampant in fashion blogger world.
Back to this photo though, as someone who lives both in the EU and USA, it is fairly common to see “designer” items on everyday people, as you well know, fashion is much more accessible there than here in the USA. This photo has a lovely naturalness and one of my favorites…!
May 29, 2014 at 2:27 pm
Hum! well yeah all those haters are around all over the street fashion blogs, anyway, I think the person who makes the comment doesn’t know very well your work and doesnt’s understand what is the point of your photographies and blog, to capture beautiful pictures of people on the street wearing something that makes them special, also this person doesn’t know the pictures that you have from Bangkok, Mexico, Brasil etc… But us, your readers we understand the point of this picture ;)
Kisses from Guadalajara Mexico =D
May 29, 2014 at 2:44 pm
I would not know Valentions from a pair of Crocks – and to me that is not what this photo is about, and that is not the reason I reblogged [http://xtian-foto.tumblr.com/] this photo. I love bicycles, and I find attractive women, well – attractive. What I find particularly attractive, charming, style setting and appealing is people having the strength, guts, and the certain ‘je ne sais quoi’ to lead their lives this way, and that applies to Bill Cunningham as well as to this young woman.
May 29, 2014 at 2:55 pm
Your photos are beautiful and always show a great eye and are inspiring on different levels. Low and high, young and old….I always find something to take away with me from the image. It is funny that many complained also about your photos of the earlier photos you did from your trip to South America (I think I’m right about the location?), which were so beautiful and captivating….completely sans Valentino! I think in these images you were, quite rightly, highlighting the way in which everyone, all of us, all over the world, think just a little bit about what we are wearing and what image we are projecting. If we are lucky enough to have a pair of great shoes…..that’s lovely…but I’ve seen plenty of women walking down the street in nicer, more expensive shoes who have no style at all. This woman had style, with or without the shoes…no question about it. I’d take her shoes, of course, but I’d love her style!
May 29, 2014 at 3:15 pm
You can’t escape haters. Don’t even bother trying. Do your thing, and rest assured that most people don’t post. They just admire. Its us malcontents( myself included at times) that tend to force our opinions down peoples throats. Far more people love it then hate it. Thats all you need to know. And trying to please people just makes for a mess.
May 29, 2014 at 3:40 pm
I agree, I dont love the idea of dressing like you’re out of a fashion blog’s photo, but when I saw it, I remembered that super awesome combination of neon lime green and beige in the same Valentino shoes…it also came to mind a recent OPI geometrical mani with the same colors…I love making that kind of connections…then those colors might inspire drawings..etc etc…nothing bad can come from it.
May 29, 2014 at 3:54 pm
I do question that people would expect your blog to circumvent “fashionistas” as some of your subject matter when it is clear that you enjoy the world of fashion, design, and go all over the world to photograph shows.
It seems unlikely that your eye would not find these types of portraits appealing. Some women have a few designer pieces and they love them more than people who could afford these pieces everyday.
Your instincts seem to be based on genuine enthusiasm as opposed to some sort of correctness about what you should like. That translates in your work and gives it a fresh feel. I guess you have reached The Big Time if your work now has a critic section- Congratulations!
May 29, 2014 at 4:12 pm
I’ve been reading for many years and love your blog and photos — street, travel, shows. I love the diversity in people, ages and locales. From my perspective, what I miss seeing and wish was explored more was people — especially women — of less typical model proportions. I use your archives for mood boards and inspiration and am hard pressed to find larger, or let’s be honest even average size people. I absolutely don’t think it’s your “job” to photograph anything other than what inspires you, but I wish women larger than a size six inspired more photographers! Deepest admiration and thanks for all you DO do.
May 29, 2014 at 4:18 pm
There was a time when that outfit and pose were original, and that was the time when they were surprising. Today, unfortunately, it’s just stereotyped. the girl in the bike in heels…and that is so regardless (to a certain extent) the brand of the shoes. I think the image comes across as part of an existing category, she’s dressed like a certain type, and honestly it does not surprise as much as it fulfills the type. I think there’s nothing wrong with that. But the heeled biker is not actually unreal, but quite common place (at least in the about fashion world it is). :)
May 29, 2014 at 4:30 pm
I’m just impressed she can ride in those heels.
(I mean, many of your shots are of fashionistas, outside fashion shows.
But that’s fine, because those shots don’t claim to be anything else, do they?)
May 29, 2014 at 5:13 pm
Sounds like someone needs to reread how and why you photograph. I love what you do Scott. You’ve been the single biggest influence in my life regarding fashion. You still are.
May 29, 2014 at 5:18 pm
You go Scott!
May 29, 2014 at 5:31 pm
I don’t know from Valentinos!
May 29, 2014 at 5:35 pm
Original Valentino’s were stunning…prefer those!
May 29, 2014 at 5:50 pm
As many of the commenters and Scott himself already mentioned above, it’s extremely common to see ladies riding their bikes on the busiest streets of several european cities. Living in the heart of milan, i also see hundreds of bikers throughout the day in outfits similar to that of this young lady. That’s probably why i also do not find anything particularly “inspiring” to spot in this pic cause I’m very much used to see that profile everyday. Or let me put it in this way, for ME there’s nothing so particularly interesting in the way she’s dressed or she rides her bicycle, to see her photo posted on one of the best-if not the best- fashion blogs. However, this does not mean that it will not appeal or inspire another follower of Scott’s blog from a far different part of the world. As might be the same for a Moroccan person who would less likely be inspired by the traditional dressing style seen in the photos of Scott taken in Morocco because she or he is similarly very much used to see that in every day life. So far, My comment is the perspective of a person who is in search of inspiration while visiting your blog, Scott. However, when it comes to your point of creating a 2-way dialogue about the world of fashion and its relationship to every day life, as in your own words, i think this pic is a perfect example of what you aimed for while starting off your blog..
May 29, 2014 at 6:06 pm
I miss the original shoes because they(regardless of label) just made a better shot….and thats why I follow this blog…….its your capacity to read and capture the colourscape,thedetails of background…like the bicycles here …that talent that fashion mags spend incredible time and money to weave an image…..you catch it in an instant and most other blogs seem to miss entirely ….they just catch the clothes/person ….you are a genius photographer that happens to focus on this street style area but I think in future you will be understood more as one of todays true greats in the Diane Arbus etc tradition……dont ever feel you have to compromise!
May 29, 2014 at 6:33 pm
Aren’t her shoes a different color in this photo? I remember them being a nudish color in the original?
May 29, 2014 at 6:38 pm
People! what is wrong with you? great looking girl on a great looking bicycle, awesome shot!
May 30, 2014 at 10:51 am
May 29, 2014 at 6:39 pm
I absolutely agree with the comment published on the front page. All recent photos are of fashionistas or some rebels in rough and, in my opinion, ugly clothes.
I have been checking the page on a daily basis for years, for pictures of real working women having great taste and thus making ordinary, every day outfit look outstanding and inspiring. I haven’t seen such pictures for a while. However, I keep visiting the page in hope that one day they will reappear …
May 29, 2014 at 6:47 pm
And now a word from a woman of a certain age. I have no doubt that I am one of your oldest, and “oldest” regular readers. I started reading fashion blogs approximately 4 years ago, and yours was the first. I immediately appreciated your photography, your eye, and your love of quality and workmanship. (And a nice guy, you once let me take a picture of you.) Then I started reading others: Garance, Manrepeller, The Glamourai, etc. etc. etc. And I found kindred spirits. And then things started really happening…The fashion world started becoming more crazy, more beautiful, more diverse! Rick Owens, The Barneys Spring Campaign, Jessica Lange and Charlotte Rampling back! I’m not trying to make out like “fashionistas,” models, designers, and bloggers are some kind of saints. But if beauty, quality, and diversity are there, then I’m there too! I prefer to have one or two pairs of good shoes rather than 10 or 20 crummy pairs. If I could afford them, mine would be Pradas. Perhaps that’s the case with the woman on the bike?
Today I posted my 30th post, on my own style and fashion blog. Primitive, tiny readership, crawling along, but happy to be here. And what did that woman, with the nasty post mean by “real people” anyway?
P.S. Please send me a better picture of you than the one I took. xxoo
I just have to laugh. When you post a photo from Morocco, there is someone to scream that it is not style, the man must just have found his clothes in the garbage. You shoot in Milan, another critic to say, that is not style, just a spoiled crème de la crème with no imagination.
Expensive clothes do not equate to style, I live in a wealthy American suburb where women accumulate Vuitton and Chanel and Prada and Moschino but fail to inspire anything. Whether you shoot fashionatas, stylists, students, or farmers, you have a discerning eye, you can see and show what makes a composition, or a moment, or an association of colors, or textures interesting. Better than any other blogger, you are able to show what someone can do with what they have, and I don’t see what makes the Italian woman on her bike with her Valentinos less “real” than the Peruvian woman with her colorful outfit in the Andes.
May 29, 2014 at 6:53 pm
Hi! LOVE The Sartorialist, have for years. Having said that, I do get bored with the images and I love looking at sites like HelLooks, CopenhagenStreetStyle, FaceHunter etc. as they are more “real” in terms of budget. I think the way people put together unique, second-hand clothing is most interesting right now, however, I would never leave such a negative, angry comment on your lovely blog. :)
May 29, 2014 at 6:59 pm
it says Leave a Comment…
May 30, 2014 at 7:21 am
it also says “reply”
May 29, 2014 at 7:11 pm
Amazing real Lanvin shoes. Such a style piece for the male version of this pic in summer!
It really doesn’t matter what brands are being wore, it’s the over all look that’s important and even then it is only our own perspective as to whether it is good or bad…. Riding a bike in heels looks cool !!!!!
May 29, 2014 at 7:15 pm
It says something about the commentator that he/she knew they were valentines. Why read Scott’s blog if you don’t like his choice of and passion about, fabulous photos.
I think it is a terrific shot.
Cait Ni Chaoimh
May 29, 2014 at 7:37 pm
How on God’s green earth does anyone know the brand name of what that girl is wearing! Also – as a cyclist in Toronto – its easier to wear heels on a bike than to walk in them – mine are from Joe Fresh!
May 29, 2014 at 7:39 pm
I think you’re taking the comment too seriously/personally, and forcing your interpretation of what makes the image ‘special’ onto the viewer. Some people go to your blog to see people in studded Valentino shoes, some people don’t want that, some may share your interpretation of the picture, and some people will have alternatives.
Why not just accept that, and let people see or take what they want from a photograph? Saying you ‘feel sorry’ for someone is also incredibly condescending – you’re a hugely successful photographer: muscle up.
Eric Jean Johnson
May 29, 2014 at 7:40 pm
It’s funny how some people, so quickly, choose to get offended these days… It is a photograph of a young woman with taste and possibly money. Why does that bother so many? This is a blog about the world of fashion and how people choose to carry themselves.
In most parts of the world, people tend to dress up rather than dress down.
I say this from experience so please don’t get offended. (:
May 29, 2014 at 7:42 pm
I think that you more than most have done a great job of moving away from the images of the same old people and same old fashion. So she was wearing Valentino shoes ? The image is still a great image.
Anyone who thinks you are doing this needs to really look through your pictures and consider again. I don’t think of you as simply a fashion photographer. Its slightly frustrating sometimes to see people interpret your images in only that narrow way.
May 29, 2014 at 8:26 pm
Thanks for drawing attention to the Valentinos. They’re much better in black!
May 29, 2014 at 8:30 pm
I liked this photo so much that I tweeted it out to my followers. And it’s not “on topic” for me (I mainly tweet about social media & business). This is a fabulous photo. It really reflects the way many Italian women dress, the mix of bikes & glam wear, etc. Bravissimo. :)
May 29, 2014 at 8:36 pm
Haters gonna hate
Don’t need to defend yourself sart
Can’t please the whole internet
May 30, 2014 at 9:01 am
I couldn’t agree more!
May 29, 2014 at 8:46 pm
SHOW me your LEGS!
May 29, 2014 at 10:08 pm
I’ve been reading your blog for years and years now and I have to thank you for helping me find my own eye and my own (on a dime) style. I hope you never stop doing what you do.
Having said that, I do miss a certain kind of post a few others in this comment thread have lamented as well: a person who has put together an amazing outfit that a) does not contain recognizable fashion-house (or fast-fashion) pieces, and b) does not look like anything on the runways or in the magazines at the moment. You still shoot these kinds of images, but they seem fewer and farther between…
An example: http://www.thesartorialist.com/photos/on-the-street-wacker-drive-chicago/
I stared at this image for days. I still come back to it.
Thanks for this, and all the rest of it.
May 29, 2014 at 10:32 pm
because she has access to expensive things doesn’t mean she should be disqualified from having style. she obviously appreciates design and puts things together in her own way. what is inspiring to me about this picture is that she is wearing an expensive, delicate shoe in a way that is completely inappropriate. that’s style!
May 29, 2014 at 10:35 pm
Well, I just loved the picture when she was posted, and I didn’t know it was a Valentino (should I still follow your blog?)! I guess the image is really about it: you don’t have to be a fashionista to appreciate a good photo in a fashion / streetstyle blog. All you need is (some) sensibility.
May 29, 2014 at 10:47 pm
wow…a photo of a girl in designer heels…on…ummmm….a fashion blog!!?!
Many of us (i’m speaking for men here at least) would not know a valentino heel from….well…any other kind of heel….so that is not really the issue….
Personally, i would love to see more beautiful women, with very nice legs and great shoes, out cycling ….hopefully, Scott, you will have encouraged this with your excellent photography!
May 29, 2014 at 11:45 pm
I still feel inspired by your photographs BUT it is true you publish much more pictures of fashion people and less of “normal” people.
May 29, 2014 at 11:51 pm
I didn’t like the photo but I just considered it a matter of personal taste. There are some of your photos that I keep returning to. This photo, for me, was a little ordinary. I can see it any day on the street in Sydney.
May 29, 2014 at 11:56 pm
I can see that your blog has kept it’s integrity. You’re not marketing yourself to a narrow audience. One thing that I have noticed is that I can easily pick which city the image belongs to if I ignore the caption. From you I have learnt a lot about style and less about designer clothing. I don’t want to see the same type of woman depicted over and over again. I don’t want to read discussion of designer labels, and that’s why I go to your blog. But I love that you also give a curated view of the fashion shows that you attend. I also really enjoy your excursions off the fashion grid – your comments on the pictures from Peru have given me a more educated eye and helped me look deeper for inspiration. Regarding the woman on the bicycle, yes I noticed those very popular shoes but I mostly recognised your love of the female physique! Nothing wrong with that.
May 30, 2014 at 12:33 am
hmmm I don’t really get why is this discussion about the Rockstud Valentino shoes can get this much of attentions. Some are angry too.
Personally, I hated those heels because I thought these ‘trendy’ shoes are really mainstream right now and I won’t ever get them.
But one day I tried them on and loved them so I bought them regardless.
My point is, doesn’t matter what brand and what trend is on at the moment. People should really wear whatever they want as long as they work.
Different people, different aesthetics.
I’m writing this not because I’m showing off that I’ve got the pairs (believe me, this comment trail is not the place to anyways), but to say ‘move on with your lives’.
Imagine in 20 years, those heels will be the heels that you want to buy and wear and you’d say, “I was wrong”.
May 30, 2014 at 12:38 am
I think the real issue is that she isn’t wearing a helmet and is biking with headphones on.
Living on the edge…
May 30, 2014 at 12:47 am
I have followed your blog for some time and I think it is your right to post the photos you want to post. If someone dosn’t like them then they shouldn’t follow. It’s simple!
It’s true that people often just feel jealous…
I never look for expensive fashion labels on your images. I don’t even think that way! Maybe it’s because I’m from a different country.
I look at the whole image or details and just enjoy. Well, you see what you want to see anyway.
Plus people are so wrong saying that you concentrate on fashionistas. You don’t even need to bother proving that it isn’t so.
May 30, 2014 at 12:52 am
I was also wondering… If people recognize the fashion labels in the photos then they are fashionistas themselves! How else would they know the labels of the pieces? So why complain?
I had no idea about the label of the shoes or the bag although I am intersted in fashion and do read VOGUE.
I think you can be a fashionista without caring about the labels.
May 30, 2014 at 1:23 am
Everybody, get a grip. The girl loves SHOES as I do. When I was young and with not much money studying design ( I worked in a fashion shop part time), had a scholarship that I spent on Italian and French shoes, for no other reason but that I loved shoes. No deep and meaningful anything!!!!!! Just a love of beautiful shoes!!!
May 30, 2014 at 1:26 am
Thank you for broadening my fashion horizon into the Valentino stratosphere. Sidi and NW used to define my borders of cycling footwear know-how.
I do though have a slight feeling to see a staged photo. The lock at the bar. But who am I to judge in his vintage lycra on a road bike.
May 30, 2014 at 1:53 am
I think, the difference lies in, if your style is motivated by external influences or if you have an internal core in the way you dress, overriding whatever external influence there could be. I think that the post from May 28 illustrates the latter (the girl in the striped blouse), while this post (didn’t recognize the Valentino shoes and it dosn’t really matter what brand they are) is fetching, because of the composition, it’s not that inspiring in terms of style.
May 30, 2014 at 1:57 am
What I love about your work is that it reflects your own effective sense of style (in fashion, and art). I think the easiest thing in the world is to criticize successful artists (Valentino, The Sartorialist). The hardest thing is to accept oneself as a creative and work up the confidence to believe in one’s own sense of taste, style, beauty, enough to start creating. We try to tear people down who do what we wish we did. I’m sure that person has their own great sense of style and creativity and could probably be successful and happy doing something they would love to do with it.
May 30, 2014 at 3:43 am
Criticism drives art forward. There is almost always something of value in it. The trick is to fond that value and apply it.
May 31, 2014 at 3:15 am
There’s a significant difference between cold criticism aimed to destroy, and thoughtful critique meant to drive art forward.
June 2, 2014 at 7:58 am
I didn’t see anyone aiming to destroy! Straight talking, maybe, but not without value…
May 30, 2014 at 5:40 am
The fact is that lots of milanese women run their bike with high heels. You like it or you don’t, but you can’t say it’s fake. This is a picture of a very common milanese young woman. Her style is, in my opinion, quite classic. Lot of them are very into fashion and strong feminity, much more, I think, than french or american women. But it’s very spontaneous and natural. don’t need to be a model to wear like that. I’m wondering about people who notes those valentino sandals. Do you have a fashion x-ray instead of the eyes? Personaly, I didn’t even know the brand of her shoes and don’t care about it. And you know what? the shoes could be a very cheap copy of valentino sandals, that you can find everywhere in the Cinese Quarter in Milan. She has beautiful legs, and quite expensive bike. Don’t be jealous.
May 30, 2014 at 6:31 am
I’m surprised by the comments from people who don’t find this blog as interesting as they used to. I couldn’t feel more different. I feel like the photographs just keep getting better and better. I love the light in them, and the action shots. I love the personality and strength I see coming from the people photographed. I feel like this blog more than any other shows me what a talented photographer can do, versus if any other person had tried to take the same photograph. I don’t even notice what the subjects are wearing half the time, I’m just so taken by the photography!
May 30, 2014 at 1:55 pm
I feel the same!
May 30, 2014 at 6:51 am
I love the shot. I have no idea about the brand of shoe… but surely they are a reflection of the society the girl in the picture is living in. Who really cares about the brand? Isn’t it the style that we love to admire? Personally I love that women in Europe wear heels and ride beautifully dressed on bikes and scooters. I wish Australia would adopt such a practice. But alas, our citizens love to get from one place to another fast – as time is so valuable – and don’t let slow things like bicycles get in the way of them and where they need to go. It is dangerous to ride bikes in our towns and cities. A real shame! Are many people killed in Europe by riding bikes in cities????
May 30, 2014 at 7:05 am
I guess she didn’t see your pieces from Peru and Morroco. More authentic it doesn’t get. Keep up the beautiful work. It does inspire me every day.
May 30, 2014 at 7:33 am
Fact: every item of her outfit,especially the Valentino’s, says wannabe, wannabe, wannabe! She is wearing this season’s uniform and it is straight out of the fashion press. Not saying she doesn’t look good , but not original. Scott, I find this even more annoying in the home design blogs. I sometimes think I will throw my I-Pad out the window if I see one more living room with a diamond patterned black and white rug. Now, do you get it?
May 30, 2014 at 7:38 am
Well, her outfit did nothing for me so I never really gave the photo a 2nd thought. I hate high heals with casual looks!
May 30, 2014 at 8:02 am
I must say that although i do love this blog (great photography, beautiful people and inspirational style) i must agree to an extent.
We forget the impact fashion has on society (or visa verso) and that all these beautiful people, wearing excessively expensive and beautiful clothing, has turned fashion into yet another money driven business. i would like to see more focus on the people in the streets that have innovative, powerful style. creative and political. It would be refreshing for more focus to be placed on this.
Focus should be placed back onto the fashion rather the brands and excess. On a personal level, fashion for me is about empowering myself. I don’t want to feel ‘less’ because what is considered ‘in fashion’ is out of my reach financially.
May 30, 2014 at 8:28 am
Haters gona hate Scott. I think this comment says so much more about the frame of mind of the commentator than about your image. Valentino shoes or not you captured a moment. Whilst I think the interactive nature of blogs is fantastic and a great way to create dialogue, as well readers must appreciate that yours is an art like any other. Sometimes you agree and sometimes you disagree and that is the beauty in it all. I think it’s brave to confront the criticism and congratulate you for having the courage to do so.
May 30, 2014 at 8:41 am
Personally I think a lot of these photos are staged. Too much of the same skin, hair, proportions on the subjects. It cant’ be a coincidence. I ride everyday to work on a bike and let me tell you, she’s not getting there successfully or fast in that get up. The only women I see in NYC on bikes seem to be dressed for battle, because that’s what its like on a bike in NYC. I lived in Rome for a year and its just as crazy there.
May 30, 2014 at 8:50 am
there’s simply too many bike shots on this blog for them to be staged. You think I called up that old Italian man to do a shot for my blog?
Next time you’re in Milan, go to San Babila and see for yourself.
ps. I ride a bike in NYC all the time and its only a battle if you make it one.
June 2, 2014 at 3:56 pm
Scott rides slow on a cruiser, like a shark lurking across the pavement.
May 30, 2014 at 9:03 am
I love your clarification about the photo…that I found adorable by the way. I am also very tired of seeing fashionistas going around cities dressed like clowns with clothes and shoes they received for free by designers…Street style blogs got too boring.
A big hurra to real people who have natural style and to people who are fixing moments of their lifes like you do!!!
May 30, 2014 at 9:05 am
Mr. Satorialist, when I saw this photo a few days ago, I did not notice the shoes. I noticed a pretty young lady with great legs riding a bike. O, and great hair, too, and a “comfortable in her skin” glow. How did you “un-Valentino” the photo? I live in “the sticks” and am not aware of many fashion trends and details. I just liked the photo.
The question I always ask myself when I look at your photos is: “Where did he take this?” and before I find out, I guess: is it New York or somewhere else in the States or somewhere in Europe or somewhere else in the world? Because for me, personally (and this has NOTHING to do with you or your photos) there is a difference in how the subjects perceive *themselves*. I have found, through viewing your photos over the years, that NYC girls tend to more “self”-conscious and overly aware of how they dress and how they present themselves, too “am I creating a look?” conscious. This may be attributed to youth and striving for identity, keeping in mind that many young ladies from NYC are usually there from somewhere else in the US and are trying to “fit in” the cool, hip city. On a whole, they seem young and eager to please the world. Your photos outside of NYC do not have this quality–I should say your subjects, not your photos, since your photos are always of excellent technical caliber.
I look to your photos to see how folk are dressing, living, in the other parts of the US/world, keeping in mind that there will be things in them I like and things I don’t, perhaps. But it is always my decision.
I am grateful for your blog that allows me that opportunity.
I love your paragraph: “The woman in this image is exactly what the commenter claims to look to as inspiration but because of one element she doesn’t like she creates her own roadblock to that inspiration.
I feel bad for people that are always looking for excuses on how NOT to be inspired.”
It inspires our awareness.
May 30, 2014 at 10:09 am
I like to read the Sartorialist’s thoughts on specific details in his photos and in what people wear. He pays attention to things that would never occur to me. Sometimes I think those details are irrelevant to real life for most people but the blog is entertaining and educational because it broadens my perspective. It’s always interesting to learn about how other people see/think about things.
Negative internet comments and responses to them never bring out the best side in people. I think the discussion is sometimes good but the comments can be so harsh.
May 30, 2014 at 10:12 am
I have to say I don’t find her outfit as appealing with this heels as with the original Valentinos. So yes, it is in the details here. But you may also blame it on the black…
I admit I’m not so into womens’ fashion, I would neither have recognized that heels as Valentinos nor the bag as Balenciaga. But though, I remember seeing that heels on several other blogs, including several older posts from you. So it’s not wrong to assume you shot that girl because of the shoes, because honestly said, I don’t see the reason why else you would have photographed her. In my opinion nothing about her outfit sticks out or testifies a great sense of style or combination skills. Or is the thing about cycling with heels?
I agree with previous commenters that lately (talking about 1-2 years or so) you mainly portrayed a certain type of people, both men and women.
The argument about whether that people are fashionistas/fashionistos or not is stupid, why shouldn’t people who commit theirselves and their time to fashion be featured here in response?
My point is more about the recent lack of development others mentioned before. Scott, you say no other blog features photographs from Peru or Morocco. True, and although I especially enjoyed the colourful combinations from Peru, I think it’s almost cynical to say it states a fashion blog’s quality, since I doubt most of those people from Peru have the chance to acquire anything else than what they’re used to, may it be Valentino heels or simply a fancy ASOS shirt. Do those people have the choice between several styles for them to form their own? I guess not.
This is not intended to become a discussion about a poverty gap between Peru and Europe/U.S. I simply want to point out that the amazement for the photographs from Peru likely originates from the diversity between pictured clothes and your recipients’ own.
I don’t think you portrayed people self-conscious of their style in Peru. You shot clothes there, not style.
But we’re used to you doing the latter, and I agree, you’re not doing that as good as two years ago (I’m not saying you’re doing bad!!!!!). Unfortunately it seems like you’re choosing from a portfolio of certain styles that established in the past. I can’t even describe that styles, I just notice there is little new to recent photographs. Maybe it is due to my young age that I’m used to fashion changing really fast, but I follow you for 5 years now and I’d say you did different a few years ago.
I’d wish to see more photographs of people whose style you may be uncomfortable with. I think that will add a new twist to your blog.
This (http://www.thesartorialist.com/photos/on-the-street-astor-place-new-york-8/) for example, unlike any other of your photographs, the subjects unlike any other of those photogrophed, though your nicest catch of the last year!
Viele Grüße, Julian
May 30, 2014 at 10:35 am
I completely agree with your perception of this woman. There are a million people in this world who are not fashionistas, models, fashion editors, photographers, etc. that would absolutely love to sport a pair of Valentino anything, because these shoes are a beautiful piece of art. And so is this woman’s fringed bag, that can be found in an affordable version available to the masses at retailers like TJ Maxx, Nordstrom, and even thrift stores. This picture doesn’t mean that we all need to wear Valentino. I think that is missing the point completely. It is meant to inspire your own spin-off of what this woman is wearing (which may I say is fun, fabulous, and very refreshingly edgy for the summertime).
Furthermore, any woman who rides a bike in 4 inch heels has my ultimate respect. You have an amazing eye for the creative, and I love being able to see a bit of what you see everyday when I read your blog.
May 30, 2014 at 11:30 am
the angry Message is spot on!
May 30, 2014 at 12:54 pm
Why did you photoshop the shoes onto the girl?
May 30, 2014 at 1:09 pm
I have never made a comment, but having read and loved your photographs for over 4 years, I had to comment on this post. Today in work, we were discussing the move from film to digital and how most people don’t print photos any longer. A colleague commented that in the future, what will we have to look back on how we were and how we lived in this era? I feel your blog is an historical comment on life in the early 21st century. I also think you highlight all people, young, old, rich, poor, every race, creed, and many nationalities. Many are not “stylish” per say, but they are a representation of humanity in its many forms. So I could not DISAGREE more with the lady’s comment, you show us so much. So much, style, so much variety, so many moments in time. So Scott, long may you continue to document our time as it is now. All the best…..and take a trip to Dublin soon……we are fierce stylish over here! :)
Maria Susete Melo
May 30, 2014 at 1:41 pm
I don’t understand many of the negative comments about this picture (or any other by The Sartorialist). I’ve been following this blog for many years now and noticed a change as well. But aren’t we all supposed to evolve? To everyday create something true that is still true to ourselves? And isn’t this a personal blog done by the same person? If Mr. Schumann wants to take pictures of people appeal to him with Valentino heels or flip flops who are we to criticize?
I am also one of those who likes to read the comments about the pictures and see what is the vibe created around the ones I like the most. And isn’t that the all point of the blog? To create a platform of discussion in style, way of living and enjoying it showing our most beautiful side? It doesn’t really matter our size, color or the amount of money we have in our wallets…
I don’t wear a uniform everyday but I am a winemaker and wearing heels or anything very very nice to work would be ridiculous and dangerous. Though I do see myself with some style there are limitations in what I do that prevent me from looking what is established by the industry, these days fashion blogs do it the most.
However, every time I come in here I find some sort of inspiration for my daily life. I still remember the turmoil created by a picture of Garance, in the winter, wearing cropped jeans showing her ankles and everyone was worried that she must have been cold. Well after that picture I started wearing my jeans and my sturdy work boots (and not only) like that because I tried it and realized it is a silhouette that flatters me. So thank you for the picture!
I can’t afford any designer clothes but I don’t miss them in my wardrobe, and if I stop by your blog daily for the last six years it is because your images caught my eye, not because of the labels. You do the most beautiful portraits and created silhouettes in women that I often find myself trying. And in my eye that is all I ever needed from you.
May 30, 2014 at 2:07 pm
It’s undeniable the subject matter of this blog has changed (evolved?) from portraits of people with truly individual style seemingly cobbled together from various sources, to portraits of people (99% of them extremely physically attractive, or old) exhibiting a more high-end, mainstream style. And also, lots more photos from actual fashion events. This isn’t really a criticism, just an observation (although I, like some others here, prefer your “earlier work”). I can’t blame you for changing in this way, you’ve become a very successful photographer through this blog, which I think is amazing, and you’re simply taking advantage of the opportunities that come with that. But, when you say you “feel bad for people” for disliking a photo or critiquing the blog, it comes across as elitist and thick-headed.
May 30, 2014 at 2:24 pm
My dears! I don’t know which countries you are from, but women in Italy, yes they DO wear designer shoes, and they DO wear designer bags. They have always done so, long before you commentators here started to read blogs and learned the word “fashionista”.
May 30, 2014 at 3:44 pm
Have been following this blog for years and personally I think there is an element of truth in what everyone is saying, which is actually what makes the blog interesting. I do think that different cities, let alone nationalities have their own style and by visiting the same places regularly there is an element of sameness entering some of your images. Yes nipping off to Peru creates some fabulous pictures and great contrasts but what about visiting other cities in France, Italy, USA etc and catching the subtle differences. The pictures you have taken in the past in Amsterdam, Germany etc have something refereshing about them. I regularly visit Manchester in the Uk, very different attitude to clothes than in London and I was in Paris and the Toulouse recently, again very subtle differences. Also those of us that have been following you for years have aged and maybe view the world slightly differently to how we used to and fashions have changed. This girl on a bike in Milan photo from April 2007 shows the similarities and differences 7 years makes http://www.thesartorialist.com/photos/on-the-street-via-montenapoleone-milano-4/#comments
May 30, 2014 at 4:47 pm
This was actually one of my favorite images taken, because I was drawn to the casualness of the image. Actually, the material item that caught my eye was not the shoes (though I adore them) but the bike. I just thought the whole shot was very natural and something I could replicate in Fargo (yes, it is finally summer here). I believe the whole idea behind art is to inspire, I may not be able buy or find everything the individual is wearing but it allows me to think and explore wearing clothes in a different way at times.
May 30, 2014 at 5:27 pm
Gotta Love The Bike………………X
May 30, 2014 at 5:40 pm
But isn’t the readership of your blog wonderful! A fantastic spectrum of those ‘ in the know’ ie Valentinos, Crocs and degree knowledge of every designer label known to man, woman and child and also those who neither know nor care about labels and branding. Can we not appreciate both camps and the myriad of in-betweeners?
May 30, 2014 at 5:47 pm
I adore this look.
May 30, 2014 at 6:26 pm
I regularly visit this blog but rarely read the comments anymore. The comments tend to reflect ideas of what is “flattering”, “appropriate” or “real” and unfortunately those ideas are often very narrow. The photos however are beautifully shot. And even if I don’t identify with many persons photographed then it doesn’t make the photo “bad” or “uninteresting”. Often the composition, lighting, background and complimenting/contrasting colours are what makes the photo interesting to me. And those elements can easily influence your fashion choices, if you’re open to them.
That being said, the author of the blog, to my eyes, does have a certain taste that translates into many of his images. And he’s allowed to, it’s his blog!
May 30, 2014 at 6:50 pm
nice legs…that’s as far as i think about it
May 31, 2014 at 8:58 am
I have no idea who makes any of the clothes the people wear in these photos. Almost all of my clothes come from thrift stores. I saw a great little Italian dress for $39.99 at Marshall’s and thought whoah that’s a lot! LOL
I see the coolest people at Goodwill now, I think creativity is at it’s best when there is a limited amount of funds. I heard a quote that makes perfect sense…”Why do the people that have the most money have the least amount of taste” Tacky and overdone will never be tasteful or stylish.
The best photographs on this site and I look at this everyday, are the ones that look like true “street style”. And Scott does that time and time again!
May 30, 2014 at 9:18 pm
I think the shoes did make the photo, and it’s more obvious now that you blacked them out! They tied in with the cream coloured tyres on the bike, and added a third colour to the earthy neutrals she was wearing. The studs played off all the metal hardware of the bikes (foreground and background), sparkled in the light which also lit up her thigh beautifully. But more importantly they clashed in an interesting way with the casual outfit.
It’s little details like these shoes that make or break a street style image. It seems that as the photography becomes slicker and people become more conscious of their image, these little ‘treats’ are harder to come by. I don’t care whether the shoes are Valentino, or vintage, they are gutsy and beautiful and surprising and sexy.
Looking back at your earlier posts, there seem to be more unusual personal touches in the outfits people wear, and I get that little flutter of excitement more often. It could be that fashion has become more elegant and less quirky, but I love seeing a mix of handmade, vintage and high fashion in one shot. Or is it that ‘quirky’ has been appropriated by the mainstream fashion houses, so it looks more intentional and loses it’s intimacy? The looks have become so perfect and styled, and this along with your consistently amazing photography has had the effect of distancing the images somewhat.
And to the people who don’t like seeing Valentino on a blog, isn’t high fashion where the most beautiful and beautifully made clothes are most likely to be found? This blog has never seemed snobby to me, it’s always celebrated the details before the labels, and there’s plenty to inspire me despite my beer budget :)
May 31, 2014 at 4:19 am
Maybe the problem is, the commenter thought “omg what beautiful shoes, I’d like them so much”. Then she found out they are Valentino, thought “oh sh** I can’t afford them” and got angry. Happens to me all the time…only I do not blame it on the sartorialist, I just use the inspiration the picture gave me to buy less expensive items and dream on…
May 31, 2014 at 8:17 am
the comments are proof of intelligent life. I am so grateful for this conversation via the comments. Ideas, ideas all the way and not a single vapid “pop of colour” remark, to boot.
May 31, 2014 at 8:50 am
Regardless, Valentino or not Valentino, a good shoes is a good shoe. Likewise, a good outfit is a good outfit. Simple :)
May 31, 2014 at 11:43 am
Sure, the balenciaga bag, has also nothing to do with it. I don’t say this picture isn’t inspiring, but is unreal also, very few can afford those shoes or bag… I find way more inspiring photos that have a lack of designers’ clothes, because I don’t think dressing well has the same difficulty when you can spend thousands on your clothes and accessories, just saying…
May 31, 2014 at 12:05 pm
LOVELY heels! love it!
May 31, 2014 at 1:47 pm
Who cares what brand she is using? probably it is valentino, but what if it is balentico? some fake? don’t be arrogant don’t be jealous , is obvious if you have more money , you can wear better stuff, but doesn’t means you can wear with style!. style is not about how expensive you have to expend, it doesn’t mean that you have big brands and original stuff, style is a way of living a perspective of life, an identification of your self!! your personality, what defines you! and i have million words more to explain , even with religion! your image is a lot reflect it on your clothes! people so jealous because she have money for wear something expensive come on world!!!
May 31, 2014 at 6:10 pm
The line that you and other fashion photo bloggers walk is one that you’re aware of, but may not be able to completely adjust for. People stalking YOU in hopes of a product placement instead of hoping you capture an expression of their personal style.
May 31, 2014 at 7:58 pm
See, that’s the beauty in fashion! You can wear a thrifted outfit totaling $25 or a runway couture ensemble for $10,000 and look equally bad ass! Sometimes not being able to spot which is which. Fashion isn’t made from a cookie cutters. However, not being fashion forward doesn’t mean you’re not inspiring. That’s ludicrous. I doubt mother Theresa wore the latest trends,lol.
May 31, 2014 at 8:38 pm
I really don’t know what all the fuss is about. I wouldn’t have noticed designers shoes from DSW shoes to be honest. I just love looking at your pictures. I have been in inspired by some looks and love the way you show different generations, male or female, fashion week and just the everyday person. You don’t need to spend a fortune on clothes to look stylish but you can get inspired by the looks and create something of your own, that’s what makes fashion so great. I may not be able to afford a $1,000 on a pair of shoes but that doesn’t mean I can’t find something similar to them and be inspired by them. Don’t change how you take your photos or Photoshop them. Show what catches your eye.
June 1, 2014 at 10:37 am
But, actually, it’s kind of boring style with out a pair of Valentino’s sandals. Good shoes make this normal militaly coat + shorts more staning out.
June 1, 2014 at 4:11 pm
I think people are missing the point of this blog, which is to showcase individuals who capture an essence of style that outwardly expresses the personality, values, and tastes of that particular person.
The fact that many are wealthy, elite fashionistas is not coincidental that many of these individuals take care in the way they express themselves.
It’s like Bill Cunningham has stated how he doesn’t “care about celebrities and their free dresses” — it’s all about the clothes!
Mr Schuman is a disciple of this viewpoint and it is apparent in not just his displays of the fashion elite, but also the country girl in an Amish community, the Brooklyn retail worker, the Peruvian indigenous. He is looking for people who are mastering the art of expressing one’s inner soul and a celebration of beauty.
Whether that be a fashionista riding a bike in Valentino heels (which are expensive for a reason), or just a guy skateboarding in New York in a pair of Vans (which reminds me Mr. Schuman has devoted a whole post about Nike AF1′s), it really is not just about the clothes, it’s about the PERSON wearing the clothes.
From a brand perspective, it’s just that. People like to think of Coca-cola as sugar water, but to the contrary it invests heavily in making the brand much more that. By focusing on someone’s choice of brands or clothing, you miss the forest for the trees, as well as the interesting soul underneath it all.
June 1, 2014 at 4:14 pm
Those who cling to perceptions and views, wander the world offending people.
Chill out people, it is a blog.
June 2, 2014 at 1:31 am
I didn’t know that they were Valentino shoes, so was able to appreciate the shot without worrying about her footwear brand. I regularly check in to The Sartorialist to look at people’s style and cannot claim to recognise too many brands. I just get to enjoy the pictures…maybe sometimes “ignorance is bliss”.
June 2, 2014 at 4:46 am
I live in Milan and those shoes can be bought in Navigli for 19€, so it doesn’t have to be the real deal. she might actually wear fake ones just because they look great – not because they’re from some famous expensive brand.
June 2, 2014 at 9:48 am
I wouldn’t know a pair of Valentinos if they hit me on the head. Anyone who can whine about how too much designer fashion appears in this blog just needs to stop paying attention to current fashion for a year or so, and then every photo here will seem more interesting. Not being able to identify every garment is refreshing; you will judge them on their merits rather than their names and price tags. And you will get a good lesson on the importance of style as opposed to mere consumerism.
When I see this photo, all I can do is wonder what kind of show she’s giving passersby in that skirt. Here’s hoping she’s really wearing shorts.
June 2, 2014 at 10:53 am
Scott don’t let these people throw you off your path. Keep making beautiful pictures without getting self conscious or philosophical. You are doing a fabulous job in my opinion :-)
June 2, 2014 at 11:21 am
hey re rock the shoes…she probably doesn’t live more than a few blocks from work..i know Milan
June 2, 2014 at 11:36 am
Wow, and I thought people only freaked out over the whole tattoo topic.
To me, style is not defined by a label or lack of a label; it’s how you COMBINE the elements to create an interesting outfit. I love this girl’s outfit – it’s just natural, casual, polished, sexy.
Whether the shoes are Valentino or Keds – it’s what you wear with them that I like checking out.
Also, I have some platform heels which I love cycling in, because it’s like wearing an upside toe-clip on the pedal – the heel keeps your shoe in place.
Anyway, I prefer the shots of everyday people on the street, but of course I admire the shots of serious fashionistas attending the shows. Both are entertaining for entirely different reasons.
I love your work so much, and as you know, I’m a regular viewer and commenter.
June 2, 2014 at 1:12 pm
Anger without productivity is wasted energy. It takes little talent, regardless of intelligence, to highlight the negative. I have seen photos of yours where the only thing I “saw” was a cigarette in a young gal’s hands. At first blush, I would zero in on the offender and totally miss the beauty of her french sailor shirt coupled with men’s style shoes and boyfriend jeans.
I know that my issues belong to the original owner – and so I elect to become better, not spew. Toxicity has a way of rearing its ugly head, even in the most unsuspecting arenas.
I admire and am enthralled by your eye – enough to visit your site on the daily.
June 2, 2014 at 1:40 pm
really you show only “fashionistas” here – i don’t think so. i see lots of people who look like students or people with ordinary jobs. i come here because there’s always a great and inspiring mix. and i’m not a fashionista or someone who has a large clothing budget.
there’s no accounting for comments though – a few years ago you posted a photograph of an older man – a bit rough looking around the edges – wearing old jeans and an anorak i think. a lot of the comments were from people who were outraged or who said they “Didn’t get it.”
i say keep pleasing yourself and brightening up my day when i have time to get here.
June 2, 2014 at 2:41 pm
I feel the need to comment, not so much on this particular post, but just in general regarding your blog. I have chosen this particular post, due to some other general comments made about your blog from people who either have their own agenda or are unable to understand what you do.
A friend turned me on to your blog a couple of years ago. I live in Dallas and have always had an interest in fashion; I have made my own clothing in the past; modeled locally for a short time; and generally enjoy putting outfits together. I am now 55 (almost 56) years old, much older than most of your subjects. The exception might be your recent Central American subjects who, by the way, were all beautiful! I don’t comment on your blog to get my own blog address out in the public eye, because I don’t have a fashion blog.
I do find inspiration almost every day in your photos. They represent head to toe fashion looks as well as creative takes on everyday clothing, and many that are in between, which is probably where I would fit in. I do buy a few nice pieces. I also shop for lower priced items, vintage items, and keep many of my clothes, transitioning them in and out as trends change, my size changes, etc. Occasionally I re-work pieces to bring them new life. There are many outfits you photograph that I would never be able to pull off, due to my age, and my size, but they still provide me with ideas/inspiration and I believe they make me more adventurous in my fashion choices.
Sometimes it is a silhouette that creates a spark for me; sometimes it is a colour palette; sometimes it is the juxtaposition of styles. I can almost always find something that I can use to take one of my outfits to a better, more interesting place.
This, in turn, lifts my spirits and makes my day that much more pleasant. Perhaps it also lifts the spirit of someone I pass on the street. One never knows!
Thank you for your blog and your exceptional eye for beauty in so many places. Keep up the great work!
June 2, 2014 at 4:35 pm
I agree with you. I’m afraid, in our days there is more common to find rude people which only is focused in the negative side than in try to look for the positive part of the things. An image still being an image and it does not matter if it is a pair of Valentinos on it. It is like a painting. If it evokes something to the audience it is good and this image does. It is a shame that some people only argue excuses looking for brands. I think this kind of people it is empty of content.
Truth be told
June 2, 2014 at 5:00 pm
“Better to remain silent and be thought a fool than to speak out and remove all doubt.”
Well, thanks for clearing that up!
June 3, 2014 at 12:10 am
nicely done Mr. Schuman
June 3, 2014 at 9:50 am
I always enjoy browsing the Sartorialist. Beautiful people, great clothes – of course, all a matter of personal taste! Whether one finds the pictures and the clothes shown inspirational, is – again – very personal. In my opinion, the outfits shown are mostly high fashion as seen in the lastest issue of Vogue, Harper’s Bazaar etc. and therefore not exactly original. I don’t mind that, my own style could hardly be described as experimental. ;-)
But what really makes me come back to this site is the composition of the pictures, the way a great moment is captured. That’s not easy to do and that, to me, is what lies at the heart of this blog – great photography.
June 3, 2014 at 4:01 pm
I started to heal the trauma’s of my past. my fashion started to transform as well.
I no longer was dressing to get something, love, approval, the list is long…..
I noticed that my husband would comment to me that I looked great, on the days when I just let myself dress with out much thought, to me I looked, not made up, messy, so to speak..
I realized that my personality and identity came from what I looked like…
I am now, comfortable not wearing makeup and dressing more authentically…
I feel free, for the first time in 25 years…….. Remember our reactions to photo’s on this blog is all about us, not Scott…. Melissa Lee
June 3, 2014 at 8:23 pm
I find it so fascinating that this simple photo garnered so many varied opinions that individuals could not help but share. Your blog may not be exactly what it was when you first started it… but it certainly isn’t anything less.
Outfit aside, I thought the lighting and shadow on the photo was spectacular. Nice one.
(ps: You don’t need to publish this comment)
June 4, 2014 at 12:26 am
I don’t know why you have that anger against the photography and the blog. For me it is a great picture and this beautiful lady in the bicycle is a true inspiration for me. This photo reminds me how we have to be ladies, and be feminine something we have been missing, I really consider that being well dressed reflects education. You do not have to wear very expensive clothes to look stylish and feminine. I think what the Sartorialist is trying to tell is that he really admires the beauty of the woman, and my respect to that lady, because going on a bike with high heels and a big purse is not an easy thing. Maybe as woman we should start to be more feminine and start to take out the yoga pants and the flip flops and please start acting as LADIES !!
June 4, 2014 at 2:31 am
i think it’s gorgeous shot. i would like to look like this girl when i grow up;)
June 4, 2014 at 6:50 pm
Wow…. That’s a lot of opinions!!!!
The lighter shoes looked better with the outfit..
So labels are irrelevant but some people love all
that stuff and sometimes it is nice to know.
Who cares, you can say whatever you like its
your FASHION BLOG!!!!!
June 5, 2014 at 5:51 am
I love your blog and the photo, although you won’t see a woman in Vancouver, BC Canada wearing high heels on her bicycle. I was reading the other comments on this post regarding the change in street fashion, and what I’ve noticed on this blog (or maybe I missed it) that there isn’t any street photography from Canadian cities such as Vancouver or Toronto. There is usually a lot of decent street fashion, particularly from our international communities (weren’t you here last year for a book signing? I would be sad if you didn’t see anything noteworthy to take pictures of).
June 7, 2014 at 6:13 pm
I don’t think this look was particularly great to begin with, but the reason it was kind if interesting was because she styled the nude rockstuds in an unexpectedly casual way ( and is even riding a bike!), I get it, it’s cool. By un-valentinoing the shoes and making them black, that element of surprise is lost and all you’ve got is another girl on a bike with a balenciaga bag.
June 8, 2014 at 3:05 pm
I think she looks way better without the Valentino`s.
In fact it´s much more inspiring that way.
June 11, 2014 at 11:47 am
While I don’t agree with the tone of the angry comment and I can certainly understand how off-putting it must sound to you, I have a sense of what the woman is getting at. It’s not about whether the woman in the photograph is known or unknown. It’s more about the type of people and fashion that she represents. Her ability to purchase Valentino shoes–to have that kind of money to contribute to the creation of her personal style–is not something that all of us or even most of us have. Seeing post after post that showcases high-end fashion or elements of high-end fashion can be intimidating and burdensome rather than inspiring. For me, there’s a difference between these shots and your shots of Peru or the Amish that you’ve shot in Pennsylvania Dutch country the last couple of years. It’s not a comment on what you should or should not be focusing on; just me sharing my personal feelings that the images showcasing regional culture give me a greater sense of color combination, of learning, and of inspiration than the chic New York and Italian women do shot standing on the corner of Lafayette Street or riding a bicycle through Milan.
Of course, the obvious response is “well, that’s just your personal preference,” and it is. But I think what the commenter was trying to get it is we already know these men and women. In a sense, they were the cool kids in school. The rich kids in school. Show us personal style. A combination that isn’t typical of a chic woman in Milan, but that is uniquely individual. That girl in Tompkins Square Park who shyly smiles as you take her picture of her homemade dress; the young Amish boy whose mother has dressed him impeccably; the surprisingly mature style of the 20-year-old art student in Savannah. These are the images that, for me at least, are the most exciting and keep me coming back to The Sartorialist.
June 12, 2014 at 11:30 am
Would you have taken her photo, had she NOT worn those valentino heels. I think not.
June 13, 2014 at 6:07 pm
Im affraid that would be just another girl on a bike then.
June 12, 2014 at 3:26 pm
over this photo I stopped and wanted to download it into my MacBook into a folder of inspiration. I also don’t like these Valentino shoes so much, but the contrast of high heels on a bike, comfortable outfit but still chic .. that’s inspiration for me.
June 18, 2014 at 8:57 pm
Good on you mate! Well said.
June 18, 2014 at 8:58 pm
Oh, I should add, I can’t, and probably never will be able to afford designer clothes. But I still find so much inspiration from your photographs. :)
July 7, 2014 at 6:58 pm
Putting aside the label debate – I actually think that her outfit looks better with black strappy heels and it improves the overall aesthetic of your photo as well. It works so nicely with the silhouettes and shadows cast by the bike. How ironic.
July 9, 2014 at 1:02 am
I think the outraged commenter is missing the point here. You have here a blogger who travels the world for work and is able to find the time to photograph ‘art in fashion and style’ of all people, ages, races, etc., not brand or branding. People seem to forget that fashion is another expression of art and design and why can’t we celebrate the masterminds behind that? Who cares if a certain pair of shoes are noted by the company that has created them? They’re still a brilliant pair of shoes. We do the very same thing every time we carry on about a painting. I don’t think I have ever heard ‘the weeping woman’ spoken about without the reference to Picasso, so why is it so different with fashion?
The other point this outraged commenter forgets to acknowledge (or in their case, probably has no idea at all about) is that if it were not for the great design houses working with techniques and vision that sets the trend each season, their pesky $75 knock off that they bought from some affordable or fast fashion chain store would not exist. They think they’re above it all buy ‘not buying into labels and trends’ but the trickle down effect has already started and taken over their wardrobe.
Also, from where I come from, riding a bike is never as glamorous as this image. We have to wear very unattractive helmets and reflective gear. Albeit for safety but nonetheless, unattractive. So to see an image in this form where the cyclist (for the record a normal person) has been able to find a balance between utilitarian meets classical Italian chic style, it’s one to be marvelled at. Especially in heels! And I bet that if Mr. Sartorialist and his sartorial minions had chosen to omit the label from the headline, there would have been a zillion posts asking what label they were from. So do you keep those that get it happy or the one or two readers that just don’t get style anyway?
I don’t always agree with the thoughts and likes that this blog notes, but I can understand its angle and never question its authenticity. I also get that each country will have it’s cultural way of doing things. Maybe not what I’m used to but still one to be viewed and considered with inspiration and wonder. It’s ok to not agree with everything you view, but don’t criticise the lack of realness, when it’s happening right around you and was never fake to begin with.
July 10, 2014 at 2:54 pm
Dear Mr. Schuman, It would be more dignified if, instead of publicly blurting crude things like “I feel sorry for people who…” when you feel hurt by fleeting comments, you simply restate your theoretical position for this blog occasionally, perhaps like here using your strong suit–your photos. Your photos are of course widely valued, though you have to admit that with your success, there’s far more commercial content than there was here a few years ago–and I don’t think you need to get upset that that’s not everyone’s cup of tea. People can be a little exasperated for a moment deep in the comments section without it undermining your professional presentation.
Let’s prioritize what this blog does right: Photos, short descriptive comments underneath. This blog is not an intellectual contribution. It’s an aesthetic contribution of our times, and our times, for all the dapper, bespectacled Milanese facades you show, are in the big picture beyond the little cloisters of privilege a rather callow, shallow and petty anti-Aufklarung retrenchment period. Whining petulantly about other people’s bad attitudes won’t reverse that, and it doesn’t really advance your brand, does it?
July 16, 2014 at 11:47 pm
As someone who has lived in Milan for just over two years seeing a woman on a bike in a pair of luxury shoes is a regular occurrence. Actually, only the other day I went to an appointment on my bike in some Manolo’s (gift I might add…. and 1 of only about 5 pair’s of shoes). Cycling around Milan is the best way to get around and no Milanese woman is going to let her bike dictate what she wears!
The shoes in question and have become ‘iconic’ and thus it is why so many people recognise them. When a shoe style does become iconic it’s actually great as it means that it probably has longevity rather than being a passing fashion trend that only lasts one or two seasons.
The difference is in Milan compared to say the UK which is where I am from originally, is that appreciation for luxury and quality is such a huge part of the culture. You buy less but spend more on few select items. You know exactly where everything is made and the composition..i.e if it’s leather or cashmere, silk or cotton. Everyone you speak to from the guy in the bank to someone who makes you coffee can speak to you for a good hour or so about their love and appreciation for Prada or Valentino…. their vast knowledge and passion is admirable.
Therefore I think it’s a little judgemental to create views based on the shoes without considering the cultural influences.
Also, how many beautiful inspiring shots do we see of woman wearing converse? These cost much less but again they are iconic and have become a staple in most peoples wardrobe.
July 28, 2014 at 5:59 pm
I love her purse which is what stood out for me… I feel sorry for her, riding the bicycle with the heels, it’s hard enough with a big purse, furthermore it does not matter what you have on if you are not graceful you truly will not do it justice…
August 6, 2014 at 12:17 am
Honestly, I find the idea, that expensive clothing and accessories some how makes fashion easier or a look less inspiring, laughable. Buying a pair of vintage shoes for $100, as opposed to designer shoes for a $1,000, does not make you any more likely to use said shoes in an interesting/inspiring way. Vintage and homemade pieces are not instantly unique and inspiring, it is the job of the person wearing them to make them so. Furthermore, if you claim inspiration from a photo of a man or women in regional/traditional fashions, it should be because of the silhouette, color, or texture (or maybe even the people in said clothing), not because of there lack of brand/designer names.
Lastly, i would like to point out, to those that expressed doubts as to the construction and price range of designer clothes, that a fashion house like Valentino, which often uses couture techniques in all of its collections, probably has superb construction and uses techniques that can not be (or should not be) done by machine. Both of which would drive up cost.
September 3, 2014 at 4:30 am
It’s funny am reading this backwards so I didn’t see your original post first, but was struck by how amazingly gorgeous she looked, getting on that bike in heels. It made me look twice. I had no idea they were Valentino.
May 25, 2015 at 2:37 pm