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The $230 Givenchy jelly sandal and other uber-pricey rubber shoes

May 19, 2010 |  1:28 pm

Jelly
It all started last year with a pair of $150 jelly (shoe-speak for "rubber") sandals from Givenchy, embossed with the brand's familiar square, interlocking logo.

"Jellies," which debuted in the 1980s and were made infamous in "The Big Lebowski" as the footwear of choice of Jeff Bridge's slacker character, the Dude, have historically been available for around $10 at the local drug store. 

But okay, the designer sandals were cute, well-made (for rubber) and comfortable. And they made for comparatively cheap label-flaunting.

But now things have gotten slightly out of hand. This summer, Givenchy is pushing a new model of jelly sandal — featuring a strip of chain across the toes — priced at a whopping $230. The Chain-Detail Jelly Sandal is, design-wise, much like its predecessor, with its gladiator-style, ankle-buckle styling. So are we to presume that the "chain detail" justifies its $80 price hike? Suspect, indeed.

And, unfortunately, other designer brands have followed Givenchy down this overpriced-rubber-shoes path (though they haven't been so bold as to bust the $200 price barrier).

See by Chloe has a $150 bright-pink gladiator jelly on the market, Salvatore Ferragamo is selling a sparkly, girlish clear jelly for $140 and Stuart Weitzman has the "Blingy Peep-toe" clear jelly sandal currently on sale for $110.60 at Bloomingdale's, down from $158. 

I, for one, will be scoring my summer jellies from a sidewalk barrel in Chinatown — for around the same price as an In-N-Out burger.  

--Emili Vesilind

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Photos, from left: Salvatorre Ferragamo sandal, $140; See by Chloe sandal, $150; Givenchy sandal, $230. Credit: Bloomingdale's.

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