Fashion at the end of the 17TH century and well into the 18th in Europe was dominated by the French iconography and tastes coming from Versailles. The Castilian (as for men’s footwear) sobriety, no longer would impose although chapines Spaniards would still be enough acceptance.
The shoes of the Baroque era
María Antonieta de Sofía Coppola film can serve example to illustrate what it meant to the Court of the Sun King, first, and that of his successor Luis XV, married to this wretched Queen, then.
The bombast, overloaded models, sumptuous fabrics and excess in all directions were prevailing standards. Women’s shoes of the era, that so well knew how to recreate the unique Manolo Blahnik, were made with a delicate and a flirtatious which would never repeat throughout history.
They were models with a small square heel executed with care and in sumptuous materials to the end: embroidered silks, delicate lace, quality velvets and ornaments with semi-precious stones, ties, Ruffles or monkeys… Collecting all the foot, closed and finishes in a not very sharp tip.
Colors were those relating to the Court of the time, as it comes to us through the artistic portraits. All ranges of the cakes were imposed, but also had a predilection for the red, yellow and violet difficult. Legend has it that the unfortunate Queen María-Antoinette was led to the guillotine with this color model.
Men’s footwear in the Baroque era
In this same line are male shoes of the Baroque and rococo.
They are designs, which at the same time that the outfit, denote a refinement and a taste for a luxury that has not recurred after. The Sun King, that we have mentioned more up and illustrates this story, he was addicted to shoes, in such a way that he had a special shoe that could not repeat pattern for any other monarch or Aristocrat.
It was made to manufacture an innovative model, a delicate shoe closed, in two colors, knotted at the instep and with a red heel. The height was to disguise their short stature with respect to their peers, but very soon the design was repeated again and again, first, in the French court for, later, be copied, as Versailles, by other aristocrats and Kings.
Boots remained the garment par excellence of soldiers and people of action, as we can be seen, for just one example, the surrender of Breda by Velázquez. They are models made in polished leather, who occasionally came to the knee with an exaggerated flywheel. This way, also of the Musketeers, decorated to profusion with lace and varied exaggerations.
Popular in 18th-century footwear
This respect the wealthy classes. At the other end we have shoes, like the rest of the garments, is quite simple for the humble or the common people. That Yes, the use of the espadrilles spreads and seems that the Sandals also born at this time. Discrete shoes are the uniform of farmers, artisans or farmers. Skin designs had a price prohibitive despite being more durable for the humbler classes. And delicate Lady models described above assumed an impossible investment for those who were not rich.
As he was moving 18th-century shoes, especially in the French court, they become even more ornate accused, such as tissue type Toile de Jouy and ceramics, oriental influence. The Chinese motifs of pagodas, lakes and peacocks are in red, blue or green color on a white background. Ladies with class point to the slippers, especially red and with a few cm heel. This model which takes up the tips of the middle ages is reinterpreted delicate designs that came from the far East. And buckles appear square (adorno) in the style of the contemporary making Roger Vivier.
One last fact: now is when the shoemakers craftsmen strive to make different shoes for each foot…
All this sumptuous, luxurious and exaggerated fashion finished, at once, with the French Revolution. At the same time that was passed by the guillotine to Kings and aristocrats forgot all these excesses in the dress.
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