Today I want to look at shoes of the 1860s through the 1880s. This is an interesting period in women's footwear because it marks the return-in-force of the high heel, and is another stretch of time in which women's shoes didn't really change all that much.
We're looking at just slippers today, dainty little pumps worn for both day and evening:
|The Met: Shoes, 1860-79, leather|
|The Met: Slippers, Evening, 1855-65, silk|
|ebay, 1880 (via)|
|1860-70 from Shoe Icons.|
|1870-80 silk evening pump with beaded embroidery, from Shoe Icons|
|The Met: Shoes, 1867, leather, silver, cotton|
|Met: shoes, 1870s|
|The Met: Shoes (Pumps), 1860s, French, leather|
|The Met: Slippers, 1885 - you can see the heel shape begin to transition between the earlier, shorter, kidney or opera heel shape into the French heel shape that would reign from the 1890s to the 1920s.|
- A square toe
- A short kidney or French heel, sometimes knock-on
- Side seams
- Almost always decoration of some type on the toe
The closer to the 1890s we get, the higher the heels, and pointier the toes.
|The Met: Slippers, Evening L. Perchellet (French) Date: 1890–99 - compare these to the examples above - we still have side seams and decorations on the toes, but the heel and toe shapes are completely different.|
So remember, my beauties, if it has a square toe and a short heel, it most likely dates from the late 1850s to the 1880s!