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Shoes Get Plastic Surgery

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Two events converged this past weekend to inspire today's post: 1) The relentless rain that pounded the Bay Area and 2) Watching the Big Lebowski.

What do these two things have in common you may ask? Plastic shoes!

Jeff Bridges spends the entire movie with a White Russian in one hand and "jellies" on both feet, curious footwear for "the dude," and one of the many eccentric details that make this film a cult classic.

I owned those very same jellies back in the day, and appreciated that cheap rubber replications of leather versions of shoes, otherwise out of my reach, could be had by the likes of me.

These days, "Melissa" is the queen of the plastic shoe. Founded in 1971, their success is credited to its three-pronged business strategy -- 1) producing superior designs, 2) engaging in sustainable development and 3) developing groundbreaking footwear technology. Their high design and ethical standards have attracted high-profile product collaborations with designers such as Vivienne Westwood, Jean Paul Gaultier, Alexandre Herchcovitch and Jason Wu. All footwear is produced from eco-friendly recyclable materials that are cruelty-free and contain no animal products. In fact, production is 100 percent efficient: 100 percent of all materials are used, creating no excess waste. Melissa also strives for the very best working conditions for their shoe-makers and employees and Melissa, whom are based in Brazil.

There is so much to love about Melissa, and the whole concept of plastic shoes:

1) They come in a rainbow of vibrant colors that are not found in nature, which brighten up the greyest of winter days.

2) There are some seriously cute and sophisticated styles out there.

3) They're plastic, which although cheap doesn't look as "cheap" as cheap leathers or other more moderate materials used to keep shoe prices down.

4) They last a long time.

5) Plastic adds an interesting smooth/shiny texture to any outfit, especially when more muted and soft textures are involved.

6) You can wear them in the rain!

Shoes aren't the only accessories getting the rubber stamp: handbags also come in plastic, perfect for protecting your stuff from the wet weather.

So get out there and drop some plastic on plastic.

The Dude would abide.

1) 202 Factory plastic clutch, Opening Ceremony.com. 2) Melissa jelly sandals, colette.fr.com. 3) Kors by Michael Kors Stormette rain boots, lordandtaylor.com. 4) Jelly coin purse, pier1.com. 5) Givenchy zipper rain boots, kirnazabete.com. 6) Furla candy bag, zappos.com. 7) Melissa leopard jelly loafers, jildorshoes.com. 8) Hunter rain boots, jildorshoes.com. 9) Vivienne Westwood Anglomania + Melissa, yoox.com. 10) Vivienne Westwood Anglomania + Melissa, Zappos.com. 11) Jeffrey Campbell Float PVC shoes, solestruck.com

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