Friday, 25 August 2017

One Giant Step

Not on the moon but Market Weighton, home of England's tallest man. William Bradley (10 February 1787 – 30 May 1820). He lived just along the road in a specially built house. This is his footprint.



He's Market Weighton's only claim to fame. The Romans passed it by about a mile, the railroads came and went.
George Hudson, the Railway King lived NEARBY.
Winston Churchill honeymooned NEARBY.
It was ONCE the home of England's largest sheep market.
The Kiplingcotes Derby, England's oldest point to point is held NEARBY.
Today the council describes it as quaint. I would say QUIET.


The High Street c1955. As good today as it's always been

It's a great place to live, there are some lovely 18th and 19th century houses, an interesting Post Office and some good later buildings. Good enough for Eugene Fisk to put together a book of drawings, anyway.
When we moved here 15 years ago long medieval burgage plots ran back from the properties on the High Street, there was no supermarket but lots of local shops.


Giant Bradley's house

Now all the land has been built on, we have a huge T***o and eight hairdressers, the market of 750 years has folded. But I never have trouble parking, it's free too an so are the loos. A bypass means little through traffic and we have the best charity shop in the world (that is Yorkshire).


Rayne Arabella sandals S/S2017 worn with JL skirt

More on Giant Bradley

More (but not much) on Market Weighton

Sunday, 23 July 2017

Walk Like An Egyptian


Silver & black leather court shoes by Rayne mid 1980s (they also did Aztec and Aboriginal petroglyph designs)


King Tutankhamun (in sandals) with Anubis and Nephthys. c1351-1362 BC. Photo by Gianni Dagli Orti/CORBIS


The Bangles 1986.

Saturday, 8 July 2017

Lotus Brogued Courts: As Seen In...


Lotus tan court shoes c1945

Typical war time indicators are the different coloured woods in the stack heel, the fact that it's under side hasn't been varnished. The scant lining materials - cloth under the vamp, no heel piece and the leather for the sides and insole very thin.

Tan court shoes were a popular choice during the war years and into the 1950s when resources were scarce. Tan will go with any colour even black. Lotus weren't the only company to consistently show this style in thier adverts.


Advert November 1943

Style variations were subtle and restricted by the austerity rules. The details of the broguing often hid imperfections in the leather or were there to join small pieces of leather. The height of the vamp varied, high during the war, lower afterwards. The heel height was restricted to two and a half inches despite the illustrations in the adverts suggesting 3 or 4 inches.


Advert January 1945

Shortages began with rationing in 1940, but by 1943 with what was left of the manufacturing industry going all out for D-Day shoes became almost impossible to find. The adverts consistently told their customers that the style illustrated might not be available and if that was the case to choose from those available (and like it).


Cartoon in Punch 1941

The austerity rules were relaxed at the end of 1945 but there were still shortages of materials and labour which were to last up to the early 1950s. However, the shoe companies began to advertise new styles and colours even if they weren't making them yet. But the tan court shoe continued....


Advert 1945

Sunday, 7 May 2017

Rayne Spotting 4: The Passionate Stranger

1956 film starring Margaret Leighton in Norman Hartnell gowns and Rayne shoes. (Ralph Richardson also does well).

An amusing satire on the slushy romantic novel vs. reality with a story within a story plot line. The frame is filmed in black and white, the 'melodrama' in colour.
Good performances from a stalwart cast and excellent production from Muriel and Sydney Box as usual. If you're a fan of vintage clothing there are some famous frocks in this film.


Rare glimpse of Rayne shoes

Wednesday, 11 January 2017

Shoe Folklore

Red Shoes, No Knickers

A mid 20th century saying denoting the person in question is only concerned by outward appearances. A similar phrase is All fur coat no knickers or more literally all design no substance.

Red shoes have become cultural icons due to their occurrence in various pieces of literature.


Moira Shearer can't stop dancing in The Red Shoes

Judy Garland follows the yellow brick road in ruby slippers in The Wizard of Oz.


Jayne Mansfield and Marilyn Monroe prove irresistable in Gentlemen Prefer Blondes.


Beaded red shoes c1905


Red suede court shoes by Holmes 1950s


Red glitter sandals by Rayne c1975


Guradsman sandals by Charlotte Olympia c2015

Monday, 19 December 2016

Darling(k)

Zsa Zsa Gabor (1917-2016)


Andy Warhol, Crazy Golden Slippers 1957 - Zsa Zsa Gabor

From The Historialist

Saturday, 17 December 2016

If You Wait Long Enough....

Finally, 51 years after the most perfect boots in the world appeared in that excellent book, the Ladybird edition of The Elves and The Shoemaker, you can now buy a reasonable approximation.


The Elves and the Shoemaker (1965)


PERFECT BOOTS (especially for going to school in).


Esmerelda Boots by Rayne - pretty good. 9 out of 10


Vanity boots by Hotter - surprisingly funky. 8 out of 10