Head over Heels

Museum of Modern Art Tokyo

Image courtesy Museum of Modern Art Tokyo.

My interest in shoes and in Art Deco fashion led my wandering researcher’s brain to search for Art Deco shoes, and look what I found! Beautifully crafted wooden heels decorated with rhinestones, beads, and colored celluloid  – I’m head over heels in “love” with these! [NB: My English teachers would not approve “loving” inanimate objects- apologies to Mrs. Cantrell.] As I searched for more information on decorative heels, I stumbled across the wonderful website Shoe Icons that describes itself as the “First Russian Virtual Shoe Museum.” The website has nicely organized collections of shoes, printed material, and shoe accessories you can browse or search for, and it’s been meticulously documented. The Museum also publishes books, including one called Red Shoe which I’d love to see. I couldn’t find it in WorldCat, alas.


The other website I found useful in this research was the Kyoto Costume Institute’s Digital Archives. Its focus is Western clothing and includes a timeline you can click on to see fashions from a particular era. Their archive is sponsored by Wacoal.

Shoe-Icons.com. Wooden heels covered with pearlized celluloid, decorated with flowers, painted in bronze, green and violet.

Wooden heels covered with pearlized celluloid, decorated with flowers, painted in bronze, green and violet. Image courtesy Shoe Icons.


5 thoughts on “Head over Heels

  1. They really are like jewelry. I have a small collection of about 24 pairs of them currently and am always on the lookout for more. Unfortunately, there is not an abundance of information about them readily available. They seem to fascinate everyone who sees them! Thanks for sharing!

  2. I found a beautiful pair of these heels last week. I can find no information on these except for your blog. I wonder what they are worth. Ebay was no help. I had no idea that celluloid was used to make heels!

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