Panolo Blahnik is back at it again, this time appearing in the latest issue of Nicotine Magazine
Photographer and creative director of Nicotine Magazine, Mark Lim, talks us through his recent shoot with Panolo Blahnik’s fabulous bread shoes.
- Jyni Ong
- 15 May 2020
Today, we have a very special story for you featuring a very special subject that never fails to cast a lol across the It’s Nice That team. Yes, I’m referring to the brilliantly titled Panolo Blahnik, a project of haute couture shoes with a twist. They’re made out of bread. We first feature these delicious creations at the beginning of this year, and since then, the project founded by Na Kim and June Park has gone onto bigger productions and high profile features, including our very own Indoors Zine. The latest sees the bread shoes featured in the new, sixth issue of Nicotine Magazine, photographed by Mark Lim. We caught up with Mark, the joint creative director and editor-in-chief of Nicotine about the shoot.
He was introduced to the crusty shoes by set designer Michael Younker, he explains telling us, “we all knew we could make something truly special and present them in a way that had not been seen before.” Elevating the bread shoes on pillows of decadence, setting the scene for baguette stilettos and brioche flip flop platforms galore, it is indeed true that we’ve never Panolo Blahnik quite like this before.
For Mark, photographing shoes made out of bread wasn’t that different from photographing real Manolo Blahniks or other shoes which are actually wearable by humans. The main difference is that “bread shoes are actually much smaller in person than you would expect,” explains Mark. “It was a cute surprise.” Working closely with co-editor Lizzy Oppenheimer and Michael on the set design, to kick off the shoot for Nicotine’s latest issue, the creatives brainstormed ideas as to how to best display the alternative shoes, and clearly, the proof is in the pudding.
A carefully chiselled loafer is delicately balanced across two piles of wire in one image. And in another, a ciabatta slider rests on the razor-sharp edge of a bread knife, taped to the concrete floor with a piece of bright orange electrical tape. Michael’s set design is more akin to contemporary sculpture in this glamorous display of bready footwear, and in Mark’s words, “it ended up being an extremely successful collaboration and we couldn’t be happier with the results.”
Elsewhere in the magazine, the latest issue has proved challenging to pull together given the current pandemic. Just before a number of cities went into lockdown, Nicotine had confirmed shoots which in turn had to be cancelled. Like so many other publications out there right now, Nicotine had to find creative ways of making content despite the situation. With a torrent of video calls underway, Lizzy and Mark have found a way to make something out of the highly precarious circumstances. Its cover story with Okay Kaya is testament to this, featuring drawn-on clothes picked by a stylist, culminating in something both surreal and grounded at the same time.
“As challenging as it’s been,” continues Mark, “it’s really forced us to expand our expectations of what a magazine could, and should be, and hopefully bring all that into the next issue when all of this is over.” And in the meantime, at least we have this delightful series shining a light on Panolo Blahnik and its wonderful bread shoes to keep us smiling.
GalleryNicotine Magazine: Panolo Blahnik, photographed by Mark Lim
About the Author
Jyni joined It’s Nice That as an editorial assistant in August 2018 after graduating from The Glasgow School of Art’s Communication Design degree. In March 2019 she became a staff writer and in June 2021, she was made associate editor. Feel free to drop Jyni a note if you have an exciting story for the site.