|American Duchess "Eliza" Early Victorian Oxfords in brown|
The idea for the "Eliza" shoes came from the growing interest in the 1830s and 1840s in the historic costuming community. We wanted to offer something that was delicate, interesting, yet sturdy - these juxtapositions were a challenge for shoes of this period, which were notorious for being particularly temporal and rather dull.
Transitioning from a previous period of bright, fun footwear, the shoes of the early Victorian period are quite boring. Skirts were long and full, obscuring the feet enough that not much attention was paid to pretty footwear. Shoes were cheaply made, often at home, with no heels, on straight lasts, and from scraps of fabric and leather. The only stiffening would be the heel counter, with toes being long, square, with no toe boxes. Men's, women's and children's shoes were essentially of the same design, with relatively little pizzaz in color, decoration, or form. This style of footwear stayed in fashion for a whopping 30 years before hems shortened and shoes gained more attention and interest.
|Shoe Icons - 1830 - 40|
The Elizas are based most closely on a pair of extant shoes in the Chester County Historical Society (unfortunately no record available online and our photos cannot be shared). A similar design can be seen in Shoe Icons, c. 1830 - 40 as well as The Met, 1840 - 49, and the Virtual Museum Canada, 1825 - 40.
|The Met, 1840-49. 2009.300.1591a, b|
|Virtual Museum Canada, 1825 - 40. S85.153|
|Antique Dress - jazzy c. 1841 oxfords|
|American Duchess "Eliza" Early Victorian Shoes in Grey/Black|
|Eliza Early Victorian Oxfords in grey/black and brown - 1830 - 1860 - American Duchess|
Pre-Order for Eliza is open through February 28th at