Creeping the Soles of Fashion

kim kardashian

While diamonds are a girl’s best friend – or at least that’s what they say – shoes come in close second. From Steve Madden, to DKNY, to Jimmy Choo, to Christian Louboutin, women can’t get enough strappy, peep-toed, booted, pointy, buckled goodness! High heels are probably the best form of accessory – they make legs look longer, outfits fancier, and confidence bolder. With a few more inches of height, a demeanor can go from basic to boss in a matter of seconds… but is attaining this height with a chunky platform flat a ‘do’? Customized Converse and Vans now have extra sole, apparently to provide trend-setting wearers with extra “soul,” but how cute is stomping around on thick white block soles? Actually… a lot! Marching the runways of fashion shows and sidewalks of busy city streets are unique platforms, known as creepers; this is an ill-fitting name seeing as though it’s difficult to creep or be discreet at all in such statement-making shoes.

Though the shoes are more commonly worn by a young demographic of women, platform flats have seen the likes of a wide variety of trendsetters. Creepers most definitely take a deal of sass and boldness – without it you might look something like a sad stilt walker or a toddler parading her parents shoes. Stomp those creepers with pride!

Creepers, or Brothel Creepers, as they were once called, originated in World War II. The crepe soles of the shoes were idyllic for soldiers trudging through tough terrain. Moving on to Camden, North London, creepers were worn by a unique crowd of people – Goths and New Romantics, as they went. The UK based UNDERGROUND brand, according to their website, was “inspired by the ferocity of punk and founded in its aftermath.” Creepers crept their way to the hearts of musicians and music-lovers alike in the post-punk grunge era.

These re-trended shoes have taken over popular brands TopShop and Nasty Gal. They’ve caused a gradual global appreciation in the fashion world and have seen the likes of celebrities like Beyonce, Madonna, Rita Ora, Miley Cyrus, and Rihanna. The reviving shoe is no stranger to the runway either. The Wall Street Journal article entitled, “Quirky, But it Has a Lot of Sole,” makes note of various designer adaptations of the decade-gracing shoe. Prada featured its dapper line of creeper men’s shoes with an espadrille sole – a summery twist on a more standard look. Stella McCartney adopted a futuristic, structured look with a lace-less creeper heel. Dries Van Noten created an understated shoe in comparison, taking full advantage of deep, rich colors like a solid cherry wood brown.


Creepers tend to look best with fitted pants or leggings; the contrast between thick, blocky shoe and slim leg is both fun and flattering. Pair it with a graphic tee and structured layer, like a leather or bomber jacket. Dress them up with a menswear-inspired outfit, or wear them to add a little punk, toughening up a softened look.

Whether you love them or hate them, whether they’re suede or patent leather, or whether they’re buckled or laced, creepers, with their historic significance, patriotic roots and musical upbringing, have crept into the soles of the fashion industry and they’re stomping to stay.

Happy creeping!


About Janaya Holmes

I’m a 20-something writer living a nomadic lifestyle with an eclectic palate, growing obsession for travel, musical appreciation from Kanye West to Stevie Wonder, and a goal to establish my ever-changing style. Arts & Entertainment and Fashion are where you’ll find me!

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