1750s Ladies' Shoe in Red

This shoe is not built after any one particular original but rather tries to capture the character of fashionable mid 18th century ladies' shoes. Museums around the world have shoes in this style. While the overall shape and the constructive elements do not change that much, heel shape and height together with the pattern or decoration of the upper are indicative of what part of the 18th century a shoe is from. 

Broadly speaking these shoes were made either in turnshoe fashion or normally built on a last. The latter is true for my reconstruction, as it uses a rand to attach the upper construction with the outer or treadsole. The heel is carved from wood and covered with the same textile as the upper on the sides and back, and by an extension of the sole at the heel breast and a piece of leather at the bottom.

Originals show extraordinary skill in the seams along the rand and heel, with very even and tightly spaced stitches - lots of room for learning and improving for me. Typical for the era, the shoe is closed with a shoe buckle through which the tabs are threaded.


  • Swann, June. Shoes. Costume Accessories Series. 1983
  • Goubitz, Olaf. Stepping Through Time: Archaeological Footwear from Prehistoric Times Until 1800. 2007.
  • de Garsault, François A. (Author), Saguto, D. A. (Translator),M. de Garsault’s 1767 Art of the Shoemaker: An Annotated Translation. Costume Society of America Series. 2009
  • Goubitz, O., & Boersma, J. W. (2000). De ledervondsten uit de wierde Heveskesklooster. Palaeohistoria, 39/40, 613 - 626. 
  • Irmgard Sedler, Wilfried Schreier, Gerlinde Koch. Schuhtechnik in Barock und Rokoko. Zur historischen Schuhsammlung im Museum Weißenfels. Waffen- und Kostümkunde 2/2002. 121 - 126.