The History Of High Heels
A little history lesson on shoes, because people have basically been wearing shoes since the dawn of civilization.
As early as 3500 B.C. Egyptians made imprints of their feet in wet sand, molded braided papyrus into soles and attached rawhide thongs to keep them on their feet. These sandals left the foot almost completely uncovered and on display. Egyptian women were the first to adorn their shoes with jewels, drawing the eye down to their feet with sparkling, twinkling sexy sandals. Scroll down to browse my hand picked collection of high heels for women and feel free to drool as much as you like. 🙂
For much of history women’s shoes were pretty much kept in the dark, hidden under petticoats, crinolines and long skirts. Ironically even though shoes were mostly hidden, they were and are the most revealing part of a woman’s attire. Shoes have always reflected the wearer’s status and economic position. The gold soled sandals of Roman empresses, red heeled pumps of the court of Louis XIV and sexy pumps from well known designers like Manolo Blahnik, all serve as calling cards of class and wealth.
In the United States, where rationing was less severe than in Europe back in the day, platform shoes were more often made of leather, but women were rationed to two pairs of shoes per year. Shoes don’t only reflect social history they are also a personal record of our lives. Mementos of special occasions, to preserve the past and to trigger memories. This is why it is so hard to discard of a pair of sexy shoes we love and adore, even if they become unwearable. This is also one of the reasons so many of us have at least 30 or more pairs of shoes.
Getting back to the Egyptians from so long ago, a well-designed sexy looking shoe underscores the innate sensuality of the foot, giving the wearer the ability to flirt right down to her toes. “Sensible shoes command respect, but sexy high heels solicit adoration.”
According to Fashion History on the love.to.know site high heels started in becoming popular in France. “When heels were first added to shoes in the 1590s they were only about an inch in height. Women’s heels took on greater elevations during the reign of Louis XIV (1643-1715) in France. Heels towered two to three inches, although “well-heeled” women’s skirts made their shoes virtually invisible. When the skirts of French gowns inched toward the ankles in the mid-eighteenth century, suddenly there seemed to be an erotic interest in the high-heeled shoe, as it made the foot appear smaller and narrower, and gave the ankle a delicate shape. ”
Black, brown, and white footwear predominated until the 1920s. Colored footwear was made almost entirely for evening dress, as it was seen as inappropriately gaudy for street or day wear. Check out the fun pics in this article by Tanya Chen – Wow, The History Of Women’s Shoes Is Really Insane And Patriarchal.
Did you know Animal Print Shoes, especially Leopard prints, are still one of the hottest fashion trends right now?
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As history shows, high-heeled shoes were first worn by men and many men still love wearing high heels today. Brooklyn Museum in New York Curator Lisa Small helped create an entire exhibit devoted to high heels. She was quoted in a related CBS News article: “Women can feel powerful when they wear high-heeled shoes, they can feel more confident, and that’s all to the better. But it’s a very interesting construction of power. Until men in powerful positions also wear high-heeled shoes, it’s always going to be the question of what kind of power a high-heeled shoe really conveys.”
In conclusion, no matter if you’re a man or a women, if you want to demand respect or simply want to be adored… there’s a perfect shoe out there for you.
Do you have a favorite type of shoe? Leave me a comment below.