Could You, Would You: Buffalo Platform Shoes

11 May 2012 by

In the second of a new column, a-fashionista and Features Editor Morwenna tries out new fads, trends and looks. So you don’t have to.

Terrifying news for anyone born after 1990: Buffalos are back. This might not be all that surprising. After all we’ve almost recycled every other late '90s trend to date. Plus the Spice Girls are supposedly reuniting so, go figure. Still, as pervading as this last decade and a half has been fashion wise (bootcuts, grunge, Pete Doherty-as-style-icon), you might not jump at reviving this one. In which case, allow me.
Circa 1996 I owned a pair of black Buffalo platform trainers. They were called trainers but in all seriousness, partaking in even the most low impact sport in a pair would inevitably result in snapped ankles.  Buffalos trainers are heavy, chunky, and painfully misguided. As are the Buffalo platform boots. Though foamy and hollow, a strong wind could easily whip them out from underfoot. Quite how they crept in the mainstream still boggles. Yes, Geri, and yes, that erroneous fashion myth that a chunky sole makes you look thin (wrong. Loubs, Loubs make you look thin) but otherwise they are a peculiar choice of footwear. They are scary and macho, a little bit A.I. and a lot dangerous. I remember a girl at my school using a single Buffalo to beat off another girl trying to borrow her night cream. I also remember the bruises. Yowzer.

Could You, Would You: Buffalo Platform Shoes

The Spice Girls rock the Buffalo trend at the 'Spiceworld' premiere in 1997

But as reported in Grazia, the '90s and indeed '00s are here to stay for the forseeable. Plus, if you’re going to embrace a trend then you might as well go the whole hog. Cue me in Angela Chase slouchy cardigan, mid-calf skirt (not-so-grunge in shade but certainly in spirit) and various platform footwear with a nod to the last decade and beyond (see the results in the gallery above).
With a trend as extreme as these, it’s best to take a cross-dressing approach. i.e. head to toe. I’d plump for a midi or long skirt. A short skirt and you’ll look Spice-y. Trousers and you’ll look like a golf club. Render the rest of your outfit dark and subdued – grey marl, navy and black. Also I wouldn’t advise white unless you’ve socks, like me.
If Buffalos feel like a trend too far, go for a flatform. These gold numbers by Topshop, a vague tribute to Creepers of yesteryear, have a certain edge, while the cream homage to the other Buffalos are certainly lighter and more theatrical. As for me, I’m going to stick to my Buffalos which are excellent for wading through summer puddles. Thanks, Office, for reviving a trend we’d long buried.


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