This is a vice I never took pleasure in but I know tons who do!
I won't name names here but I know tons of you who run to retail therapy when things turn blue. There is nothing like a new pair of Jimmy Choo's to chase the clouds away! (CM, SA, SM, LM, SB, DS you know who you are!)
I always thought I never indulged in this because my feet were so damn big. All my life I crammed my Size 11s into 10s. Shoes for me meant blisters and band aids. Bad enough that my husband's family owned shoe stores. Gee Wiz!
So I was fascinated to learn that Shoe Therapy struck hard in the 15th century but even more fascinating was it struck MEN! Granted my husband has more shoes than me but men? Not only that they had to be certain style. Here is the look...
The pointier the better. They stuffed the toes with horse hair and or whale bone. I think my Size 11's might fit in these!
So the question is why? There are several theories but the two I like best are: One, this style of shoe called Poulaines was subject to many pratfalls and indicated that you were wealthy and couldn't lower yourself to manual labor.
Or perhaps the best explanation for this confounding flamboyance is that the shoes emerged soon after the Black Death killed 30 to 60 percent of the population of Europe. It may have been a reaction to a type of austerity. The plague left a landscape with a lot of people who had lost close family members, a generation of mourning. Suddenly there were less people who had more money to spend on clothing.” So poulaines may have been a kind of retail therapy for coping with the surprise disappearance of 25 million people. Similar to other fashion trends that followed widespread losses of life, such as the conspicuous designs that emerged in the 1920s and 1950s, following World Wars.
But unlike the 20s or 50s this trend lasted a CENTURY and was finally banned in London and Paris by the Shoe Police who would arrest you if you wore shoes with toes longer than 2 inches. Can you imagine?