x Abu Dhabi, UAEThursday 20 July 2017

A pair of shoes for $27,000? See you later, alligator

The Life: Thinking of snapping up some alligator-skin loafers? Pairs in a range by luxury brand NewbarK cost up to $27,000 - although that does include additional jewellery.

NewbarK shoes retailing on the Moda Operandi website are priced at up to US$27,000. Photo Courtesy Stuart Pettican / NewbarK
NewbarK shoes retailing on the Moda Operandi website are priced at up to US$27,000. Photo Courtesy Stuart Pettican / NewbarK

If you have been looking for a gift for the person who has everything, consider your search over.

NewbarK, a luxury shoe and handbag company set up by stylists to the stars, has two gifts for the price of one: alligator-skin loafers with jewellery.

But they are a little on the pricey side, with six versions retailing on Moda Operandi, the online luxury store, for up to US$27,000 (Dh99,168).

The loafers are the result of a collaboration between NewbarK and the jeweller Hoorsenbuhs.

"I met them and used their jewellery many times for several of my clients like Heidi Klum and Courteney Cox," says Maryam Malakpour, NewbarK's founder and creative director.

"They came to one of our presentations and they were like: 'This is amazing, why don't we take one of the shoes and add the jewellery, add the link'."

And so they did.

The most expensive pair sport rose gold and diamonds. But the company also make a "cheaper" combination featuring alligator skin and sterling silver, which cost about $14,500. It may sound like a lot of money, but the jewellery can be recycled, Ms Malakpour says.

"If someone really wore those shoes out and wanted to get rid of the shoes, they could always use the jewellery and make a beautiful ring [out of it] because it is the link used for all their rings," she says.

"It is a very extravagant item, but at the same time it's a pretty incredibly exclusively beautiful item." Alligator-skin shoes on their own typically cost about $5,000, she adds. The reason they are so expensive is because they use only one part of the alligator in handbags and shoes: the belly.

"All the rest of is very stiff. Therefore, I think each pair of shoes takes one-and-a-half alligator skins," Ms Malakpour says.

But did they die of natural causes?

"This, I have no idea about - but I really, absolutely hope so," she says.

gduncan@thenational.ae