- Basic shoes parts: Sole, Insole, Outsole, Midsole,
Heel, Vamp or upper.
- Shoes making process. Usually making a shoes consists
of the 6 following steps: Last making; Pattern Making;
Clicking; Closing; Making; Finishing. And a shoes factory
usually consists of 4 departments: Clicking or Cutting
Department; Closing or Machining Department; Lasting &
Making Department; Finishing Department and the Shoe Room.
- Over 100 different operations go into the construction
of an individual shoe.
- The history of human development shows that the
importance of protecting the foot was early recognized.
Records of the Egyptians, the Chinese and other early
civilizations all contain references to shoes. The shoe is
repeatedly mentioned in the Bible and the Hebrews used it
in several instances with a legal significance, notably in
binding a bargain.
- 4,000 years ago the first shoes were made of a single
piece of rawhide that enveloped the foot for both warmth
- Sturdy shoes first came into widespread use between
40,000 and 26,000 years ago, according to a US scientist.
Humans’ small toes became weaker during this time, says
physical anthropologist Erik Trinkaus, who has studied
scores of early human foot bones. He attributes this
anatomical change to the invention of rugged shoes, that
reduced our need for strong, flexible toes to grip and
- The first known images of footwear are boots depicted
in 15,000 year old Spanish cave paintings.
- In Europe pointed toes on shoes were fashionable from
the eleventh to the fifteenth centuries.
- In the Middle East heels were added to shoes to lift
the foot from the burning sand.
10. In Europe in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries
heels on shoes were always colored red.
11. Shoes all over the world were identical until the
nineteenth century, when left- and right-footed shoes were
first made in Philadelphia.
12. In Europe it wasn’t until the eighteenth century that
women’s shoes were different from men’s.
13. The first lady’s boot was designed for Queen Victoria
14. Six-inch-high heels were worn by the upper classes in
seventeenth-century Europe. Two servants, one on either
side, were needed to hold up the person wearing the high
15. Grecian shoes were peculiar in reaching to the middle
of the legs.
16. The present fashion of shoes was introduced into
England in 1633.
17. In the ninth and tenth centuries the greatest princes
of Europe wore wooden shoes.
18. Slippers were in use before Shakespeare’s time, and
were originally made “rights” and “lefts.”
19. In the reign of William Rufus of England, in the
eleventh century, a great beau, “Robert, the Horned,” used
shoes with sharp points, stuffed with tow, and twisted like
20. The Romans made use of two kinds of shoes–the solea, or
sandal, which covered the sole of the foot, and was worn at
home and in company, and the calceus, which covered the
whole foot and was always worn with the toga when a person
21. In the reign of Richard II., shoes were of such absurd
length as to require to be supported by being tied to the
knees with chains, sometimes of gold and silver. In 1463 the
English parliament took the matter in hand and passed an act
forbidding shoes with spikes more than two inches in length
being worn and manufactured.
22. Up to 1850 all shoes were made with practically the
same hand tools that were used in Egypt as early as the 14th
century B.C. as a part of a sandal maker’s equipment. To the
curved awl, the chisel-like knife and the scraper, the
shoemakers of the thirty-three intervening centuries had
added only a few simple tools such as the pincers, the
lapstone, the hammer and a variety of rubbing sticks used
for finishing edges and heels.
23. In 1845 the first machine to find a permanent place in
the shoe industry came into use. It was the Rolling Machine,
which replaced the lapstone and hammer previously used by
hand shoemakers for pounding sole leather, a method of
increasing wear by compacting the fibres.
24. In 1858, Lyman R.Blake, a shoemaker, invented a machine
for sewing the soles of shoes to the uppers.His patents
were purchased by Gordon McKay, who improved upon Blake’s
invention. The shoes made on this machine came to be called
25. In 1875 a machine for making a different type of shoe
was developed. Later known as the Goodyear Welt Sewing
Machine, it was used for making both Welt and Turn shoes.
These machines became successful under the management of
Charles Goodyear, Jr., the son of the famous inventor of the
process of vulcanizing rubber.
26. High heels for women are believed to have originated
with Catherine de Medici, a 16th century Italian noblewoman
who was short in stature and wanted to make a bigger
impression when she arrived in France to marry the future
27. In 18th century legislation designed to create paved
walkways within cities allowed women to wear less practical
shoes with higher heels
28. Sneakers were first made in America in 1916. They were
originally called keds.
29. The open-toed shoe became fashionable in the 1930s as a
result of the new vogue for sunbathing.
30. Roger-Henri Vivier is credited with inventing (or at
least re-popularizing) the stiletto heel in the 1950s.
31. Despite all of cutbacks during World War II, high shoes
were very in style. Designers created tall, uplifting heels
using materials that weren’t rationed, like wood straw and
32. The boots Neil Armstrong walked on the moon in are
still floating around in space.
Types of Shoes
33. Boots were first worn in cold, mountainous regions and
hot, sandy deserts where horse-riding communities lived.
Heels on boots kept feet secure in the stirrups.
34. Sandals originated in warm climates where the soles of
the feet needed protection but the top of the foot needed to
35. Pumps – These are shoes where the foot is supported all
around the shoe front, back and on both sides and can have
an ankle strap. The sole is a one piece type with a heel of
any size with a high heel pump often called a stiletto.
36. Open toe shoe – This is basically a pump shoe as
described above where the front is cut away to expose all of
the toes. When this is done to only expose the big toe or
middle toes using a smaller cutaway it would be refered to
as a peep hole shoe.
37. Wedge Shoe – This is any type of heeled footwear where
the there is no gap below the sole meaning the full length
of the base of the shoe makes contact with the ground.
38. Mule – This type of shoe is one which has a heel but
has no support around the ankle and rear of the shoe or
another way to describe it is as a heeled flip flop. These
can be completely closed at the front or cut away as an open
toe or peep hole shoe.
39. Mary Jane – This can be a flat or heeled shoe which
like a pump encloses the foot all the way around it. The
front of this shoe will be square or very slightly rounded
with a cross strap running across the foot central between
the ankle and toes.
40. Boots – These are shoes which completely enclose the
foot and can come in flat, wedge and heeled styles. There
are various types with the shortest being the Ankle high
boot which reaches just above the ankle then it’s the Knee
high boot which stops just before reaching the knee and the
Thigh high which covers the leg all the way to the thigh.
Two lesser known boots are the crotch boots which reach all
the way up the leg to the crotch and the Chap boot which is
a modified crotch boot which has a piece of material which
reaches over the hips and secured around the waist with a
41. Sandals – These are where the sole of shoe can be flat,
wedged or heeled and the upper part is made up of straps
which can be arranged in any form to secure the shoe. This
means that the toes and most of the sides and top are
uncovered and the straps can even go up the leg towards the
knee and this type of sandal is often called a gladiator
sandal. Oxford – This is the name given to a shoe which
encloses the foot and is laced up along the top this can be
a flat, heeled or wedge styled shoe.
42. D’Orsay – This is a shoe which has no sides but has a
support at the heel area and the toes are covered this can
be with or without an ankle strap.
43. Platform – this is a shoe which has a multiple layered
sole to elevate the wearer.
Women and shoes
44. A poll of 1,057 women by the Consumer Reports National
Research Center for shopping magazine ShopSmart found U.S.
women on average own 19 pairs of shoes although they only
wear four pairs regularly while 15 percent have over 30
45. According to Glamour, the average woman will buy 469
pairs of shoes in her lifetime. All in all, she will end up
spending $25,000 on shoes.
46. Former Philippine First Lady Imelda Marcos owned 1,200
pairs of shoes.
47. What Madonna wears: Being one of the most elegant women
all over the world, Madonna is a shoes collector. Her
wardrobe today contains several hundreds pairs. Some of her
shoes are so precious and fragile, that Madonna never puts
them on and keeps carefully packed in silk paper. Only
sometimes she takes them out of the wardrobe, has a look at
the shoes- and then hides them again. However, the singer
does not disdain to wear less luxurious shoes, for example,
Adidas or Converse sneakers. Usually she buys a new pair
long before this design appears in the shops.
48. A new report indicates that on average, women begin
wearing at age 12 and continue doing so until they’re 63.
49. Altocalciphilia is the condition of having a high heel
fetish, as in “Carrie Bradshaw had a borderline case of
Symbolism and Superstition of Shoes
50. In Biblical times a sandal was given as a sign of an
51. In the Middle Ages a father passed his authority over
his daughter to her husband in a shoe ceremony. At the
wedding, the groom handed the bride a shoe, which she put on
to show she was then his subject.
52. Today in the U.S. shoes are tied to the bumper of the
bridal couple’s car. This is a reminder of the days when a
father gave the groom one of his daughter’s shoes as a
symbol of a changing caretaker.
53. In Hungary the groom drinks a toast to his bride out of
her wedding slipper.
54. Shoe dreams deal with walking certain paths in our
lives. If you are wearing tight Shoes, the road you are
traveling is hard, and much sorrow is involved. Comfortable
Shoes indicate you are in a good place in your life and
success is around the corner. Buying Shoes indicates you
still have quite a distance to travel until you reach your
goals. Dirty, worn-down Shoes encourage us to examine our
spiritual walk, or ask us to take a walk of faith.
55. Superstition says that to dream of losing a shoe
predicts an illness. This may originate from an old rural
superstition from the UK that advises to burn a smelly old
shoe in the home to avoid infection in the house. Dusty
shoes indicate an unexpected journey and shinny shoes mean
happiness in love.
56. In the Western world, tossing old boots in the wake of
departing ships was thought to insure a sailor’s safe return
home. This tradition is carried out in modern times by tying
shoes to the car bumpers after a wedding. This action is
said to:1, assure a happy home life; 2, keep a husband from
wandering; 3, and all the roads a family takes will always
lead back to the home.
57. In matters of love, if shoes are placed on the left
side of the bed in the form of a “T” it is said that a
vision of your love will come to call in your sleep. Do not
put your shoes souls up under your bed, as superstitions
indicate this will cause nightmares and cramps.
58. Placing shoes caddywampus in your doorway is a good way
to outsmart devils from entering your door. Place one shoe
with toes facing out the door, and the other shoe with toes
facing in – this is said to confuse dense little demons and
keep your home evil-free.
59. Placing shoes on top of a table is symbolic of death.
The origin of this superstition comes from the times of
hangings in which convicted prisoners were hanged with their
shoes still on. Upon letting loose of the noose, their
shoes would tap on the surface – the association was
translated to table tops.
60. Itchy Feet: An itching foot foretold a long journey
from which the person would derive pleasure (or walk on
strange/foreign ground). If it was the right sole then the
person was either going somewhere they would be welcomed; or
would undertake a task and be successful in it. The opposite
was true for the left sole. Itching feet could also mean a
sign of sorrow and some believed it was the forecast of a
new shoes. In the Middle Ages shoes neede to be broken in
which might mean a sorry situation, also the ida of new shoe
may related to a death in the family.
61. Leaving Your Outdoor Shoes at the Door: In Japan it is
customary for a person entering establishments or homes to
leave there outdoor shoes at the door and slip into a pair
of slippers. This custom has evolved into a custom for many
people in every culture. The proper shoe etiquettes depend
on where you are and what the preferred custom requires.
62. Shoes ETIQUETTES IN ISLAM: When putting on shoes, begin
by placing the right foot into the right shoe first. When
removing the shoes, remove the left shoe first. Do not walk
while wearing one shoe only, either wear both shoes or
63. According to the Code of Jewish law (the Shulchan Aruch),
when putting on shoes, the right shoe goes on first. When
tying shoes. the left shoe is tied first. When shoes are
taken off, the left shoe comes off first. This custom is
based on the belief that the right is more important than
the left. Therefore, the right foot should not remain
uncovered while the left is covered. Shoes should be tied
from the left since knotted teffilin is worn on the left
64. On the historic day of mourning, Tisha b’Av, Jews are
prohibited from wearing leather shoes. The same prohibition
applies on Yom Kippur to show remorse and penance. In the
Book of Isaiah (20:2), Isaiah is commanded to remove his
sandals as a sign of mourning. Shoes also play a part in the
mourning period after a death. During the period of shiva,
the seven days of mourning, leather shoes may not be worn.
In Talmudic times, both the pall bearers and the mourners
65. The question of shoes also arises in Jewish burials.
The body of the deceased may be wearing shoes, but only if
the shoes are made of linen or cotton. Most Jews are buried
in a shroud which covers the feet, so the issue never
66. It is against the law to take your shoes off if you
have smelly feet in a theatre in Winnatka, Illinois.
67. It is illegal to walk down a street in Maine with your
68. In Ohio, women are prohibited from wearing patent
leather shoes in public.
69. In North Dakota, it is illegal to lie down and fall
asleep with your shoes on.
Chinese shoes facts
70. In the early 10th century, Emperor Li Yu of the
Southern Tang dynasty in China ordered one of his slave
girls to bind her feet in silk ribbons and dance on a
platform littered with golden lotus flowers. From that day
on, foot binding was often associated with the term golden
71. Foot binding was seen as a sign of beauty and
attractiveness. Once a girl was of marriageable age,
prospective mother-in-laws would come around and pick a wife
for her son by the appearance of the girl’s feet.
72. Since foot binding made it virtually impossible for
women to get around on their own, many peasant women did not
bind their feet. They had to work in the rice fields, and
later the tea factories, so they had to be able to use their
73. The shoes of palace women during the Qing Dynasty (1644
– 1911) were red. Accompanied by beautiful figures and thick
soles, they were very fancy and honorable.
74. In the shoe family, Chinese-style embroidered shoes,
which have been deemed as a perfect combination of the shoe
culture and the art of embroidery, are a 100-percent
handicraft creation by Chinese people. Deeply rooted in
Chinese culture, they are reputed as “Chinese shoes”.
75. Many young people believe embroidered shoes add a touch
of elegance to the modern woman without looking too
conservative. And more than 20 ethnic groups still wear
embroidered shoes as part of their characteristic dress.
Embroidered shoes have become more than footwear these days
— they are one of the nation’s cultural treasures.
76. Auspicious Wedding Shoes: During the wedding ceremony,
the bride usually wears special wedding shoes. For example,
in Southern Fujian Province, the bride has to wear a pair of
shoes embroidered with patterns of a turtle or a deer, which
symbolizes blessing, happiness, and longevity after
77. In China one of the bride’s red shoes is tossed from
the roof to ensure happiness for the bridal couple.
78. In ancient times, males were referred to as Qian
(symbol of heaven in the Eight Trigrams, or the eight
energies in the T’ai chi martial art), and females, as Kun
(symbol of earth in the Eight Trigrams). Women’s shoes are
therefore called Kun shoes.
79. During the Han Dynasty(206BC-220AD), when a woman was
getting married, she usually wore a pair of wooden sandals
painted with colorful patterns and fastened by colorful
ribbons, both of which were seen as auspicious symbols.
80. During the Southern Dynasty(420-589), if a man was to
take a wife, he had to first present to the woman a new pair
of silk shoes when delivering betrothal gifts. The custom
continued in many places, such as in Ningbo and Yinxian
cities of today’s Zhejiang Provincein East China, during the
dynasty’s Guangxu Period.
81. The “Sifting Shoes” Custom: There is an interesting
custom called “sifting shoes” among today’s Zhuang Ethnic
Minority people today. When two young people get married,
the bride’s sisters escort her to the bridegroom’s family.
Then a wedding ceremony is held, in which the bride and
bridegroom make formal bows to the groom’s parents. After
that, the escorts sing songs together before the
bridegroom’s family lay out the wedding banquet, during
which the ritual of tea or wine serving is held. As the
escorts are beginning to take leave, a young man brings out
a sift (container of sort) and begins “sifting shoes”.
Some extreme facts
82. Biggest Shoes in the World: Marikina City owns the
distinction of having crafted the world’s largest pair of
shoes, each measuring 5.5 meters long, 2.25 meters wide and
1.83 meters high. The heel alone measures 41 centimeters or
16 inches. The P2-million shoes can reportedly fit to a
37.5-meter or 125-foot giant. Around 30 people could put
their feet into the colossal shoes simultaneously.
83. The most expensive shoes: Ruby Slippers from House of
Harry Winston: $3.000.000. This Ruby Slippers is the most
expensive and as well as spectacular and splendid slippers
in the world. This slippers is the achievement of Ronald
Winston, the designer of the House of Harry Winston. The
beauty of design coming from 4,600 rubies of 1,350 carats.
This shoes has adorned the feet of Judy Garland.
84. The Bata Shoe Museum, located in Toronto, Canada, is
the only shoe museum in North America.
85. The Guinness World Record for most people running in
high heeled shoes is 155.
86. 80 craftsmen will touch one pair of Stuart Weitzman
heels during the 6 to 7 weeks of production time it takes to
Shoes in fairy tales
87. Cinderella is the obvious first…then there’s Anderson’s
“Little Match Seller”, who has her shoes stolen by
ragamuffins. There’s also the girl from “The Red Shoes”,
which is quite a creepy and wonderful story. The mermaid
from “The Little Mermaid” feels as if she’s walking on
knives all the time, though that isn’t really shoes. On to
Grimm. There’s the little sister in “The Almond Tree” who
gets a pair of shoes from her dead brother. There’s “The
Shoemaker and the Elves”, though I don’t think that has
anything to do with women, if that’s your topic. The girls
in “The Twelve Dancing Princesses” wear out their shoes. If
you want to go as far as Hoffman, Clara from “The
Nutcracker” defeats the mouse king by throwing her shoe at
him. Don’t forget the iron shoes in which Snow White’s
stepmother dances to her death at the “happy ending”
3 contemporary Shoes designers
88. Jimmy Choo: Malaysian born Jimmy Choo constructed his
first pair of shoes at the age of 11. As a young man, he
paid his way through studies at Cordwainers Technical
College by working at restaurants and as a cleaner at a shoe
factory. In 1986, after completing his schooling, Choo
began creating shoe designs that soon caught the attention
of celebrities and fashion industry figures alike.
Voguemagazine featured his hand-made shoes on a record eight
pages in a 1988 issue and his star continued to rise when
Princess Diana became a fan of his work. Choo teamed up with
British Vogue accessories editor, Tamara Mellon, in 1996 and
together the two co-founded Jimmy Choo Ltd. The company
grew at an exponential rate, but the story did not have a
happy ending. Conflict arose between Choo and Mellon.
After Choo’s niece, who had worked for him for years, chose
to side with Mellon, Choo left the company, selling his 50%
for only £10 million. Since then, Choo has focused on
designing his exclusive Jimmy Choo Couture line. One of his
goals is to establish a shoemaking institute in his native
89. Steve Madden: American shoe designer Steve Madden has
enjoyed great success and suffered considerable lows over
the course of his career. Madden went from personally
visiting boutiques trying to convince them to buy his first
shoe designs to being the CEO and founder of Steve Madden
Ltd., a company that was enjoying dominance over the teenage
girl demographic in the world of shoes in the 1990s. The
good times ended in 2002 when Madden was convicted of stock
manipulation, money laundering and securities fraud. He was
forced to resign as CEO and sentenced to 41 months in
prison. Madden served 31 months of his sentence while
holding the position of creative and design chief at Steve
Madden Ltd. During his time in prison, he proposed to his
director of operations, Wendy Ballew, was treated for
substance abuse problems and continued to draw a $700,000
salary from his company. Since he was released, his company
has only grown more successful and his designs continue to
appeal to teens and 20-somethings.
90. Christian Louboutin: Known for the distinctive red sole
on all of his shoes, Christian Louboutin designs footwear to
help a woman feel confident and empowered. The red sole
trend began in 1992 during the early days of Louboutin’s
high-end shoe line. The designer sought to spice up the
look of a shoe that “lacked energy” by painting the bottom
with red nail polish. Soon the shiny, colourful sole became
a signature aspect of his shoes. Louboutin has even
patented his red sole design as a trademark in the United
States. Louboutin first developed an awed love of shoes as a
child of 12 when he ditched school in favour of watching the
showgirls in Paris nightclubs. He never finished school and
soon poured all his energy into bringing the stiletto heel
back into fashion around the world. The 1990s and 2000s saw
a trend of sky-high heels measuring 120mm (4.72 inches) and
higher thanks in large part to Louboutin’s creations.
Louboutin is also not afraid to adorn his shoes with
embellishments including jewels, bows, feathers and other
decorations. There are more than a dozen Christian Louboutin
boutiques around the world, each uniquely designed and
decorated by Louboutin himself.
Something about Feet
91. Baby Feet Facts: Baby feet grow quickly during the
first years, perhaps going through 3 or 4 sizes. During the
second year, the growth slows down just a bit, where baby
feet may go through 2 or 3 sizes. It takes about 18 years
for a child’s foot to totally develop.
92. At birth a foot contains 22 bones – by school age this
will be 45. Over the next 13 -14 years these will fuse
together to create the 26 bones that makes up the adult
93. Baby feet exert a lot of energy, when standing and
balancing. This causes baby feet to get very hot. Baby feet
can sweat up to twice the amount of adult feet.
94. Most experts agree that bare feet are best for your
baby, up until they start standing and walking.
95. The average person walks 2,000 miles a year.
96. Plato and Aristotle believed going bare footed
diminished the libido and wearing shoes added to ones sexual
97. The best time to try on shoes is usually at the end of
the day, when your feet are most swollen.
Finally, 3 sayings about shoes worthwhile to remember
98. “I cried because I had no shoes, then I met a man who
had no feet.”
99. “Before you criticize someone, you should walk a mile
in their shoes. That way when you criticize them, you are a
mile away from them and you have their shoes.”
100. “Don’t throw away your old shoes until you have a new