Fashion

Heels on Wheels: Meet Saint Laurent's Anja 100

A pump, a roller skate, a weapon, a death wish – whatever this hybrid is, it’s wheely fun
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Meet Anja 100

It was back in Fall 2013 when Saint Laurent released a pair of roller skates. Even with its unassuming sneaker design, it blew the minds of both the skating community and fashion world, largely due to its thousand-dollar price tag.

Four years later, the Parisian brand has release a pump roller for Fall/Winter 2017 called the Anja that’s almost three times more expensive at $2,830.

Talk about being made for high rollers. 

Controversy

A provocative series of advertisement images featuring the Anja and snapped by Dutch photographer duo Inez and Vinoodh came under fire in Paris. Two images in particular caused a stir: One depicted a model on the ground wearing a fur coat, her legs spread, crotch in full view; the other showed the same model bent over a stool. The images were viewed as degrading to women and “incitement to rape”, leading to activists censoring display ads with stickers over overexposed lady bits. 

 

Details

The slender silhouette and  leather appliqué scream “dominatrix”. The transparent wheels of the Anja are daubed with white paint and the words “Saint Laurent” look like they were written on the toe stop with a permanent marker. To us, that says “rebel”. “Daredevil” is another word we’d use. How intense is it to glide along on your tippy-toes?

Structure

Let’s first familiarise ourselves with the Anja’s engineering. Because this is a working pair of pump rollers. The heel, which is shorter than the shoe’s base, is attached to a wheel with a metal bar. This allows for weight distribution and therefore stability. Also ensuring security are the chunky kingpin, truck and cushions – the set of components in a roller skate that control force exertion and turning angles. 

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Where to wear?

The obvious thing is to go clubbing in these since they’re sexy as hell and all blinged up. But, hey, alcohol and wheels aren’t made for each other, unless you want a broken leg and a hospital bill that matches the shoe’s price tag – c’est pas chic. Think out of the box – skate through the CBD area on a Sunday afternoon, when cars are scarce, and daylight and space are aplenty. But if you take a spill, remember to keep those legs together.

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