The Evolution Of Shoes Essay

2363 words - 9 pages

Dr. Seuss talks about, “oh how many feet you meet” in his book Foot Book. With so many feet and uses for them, humans developed ways to protect their feet with the idea of shoes. When people first started wearing shoes, they were worn for more practical uses than they are today. One man, Joshua Mueller, holds the record for the most pairs of converse shoes owned at 1,546 pairs (“Largest Collection of Converse Shoes”); now that is something to talk about. The world of shoes is ever changing, not only in style, but in many other ways.
Shoes began with simple designs and materials, because they were generally worn for protection by those who were able to create or afford them. “The simplest way to protect feet was to grab what was handy- bark, large leaves and grass- and tie them under the foot with vines” (“The History of Shoes”). Looking further into the future, the Romans developed more styles of sandals like the military sandal called the caliga. This open-toed shoes consisted of “a lattice- patterned upper, front lacing and a heavily nailed sole.” Britain saw what the Romans were wearing and based their styles off of this as well, although they went with a closed-toe design because of their colder weather patterns (“The History of Shoes”). Footwear from this time period is difficult to locate, so most of the information comes from looking at paintings, sculptures, and other artifacts that were left behind by the people of that time period (Krick). Even in the early years of civilization, shoes changed as new ideas and materials were developed.
In the medieval times, footwear started to become more of an indication of social status. Those who were able to wear shoes that were more impractical meant they did not have a laborious job, and they could afford to be stylish. One of the tends was a pointed toe cloth shoes that would be made of “woven cloth, wool felt,” or “various grades of leather” (Krick). As the Middle Ages came to a close, shoes had a square pointed toe, which then evolved into a “round toe by the 1590s.” After some time, 2 to 3 inch heels started to become popular (“The History of Shoes”). The footwear industry changed greatly during this time period, and many of the styles created are still well-known today.
As the 1800's came, many new inventions increased the development and availability of shoes to people in all social classes. The creation of buckles, zippers plastic, and velcro made footwear less expensive to the average consumer, therefore increasing the selling market. These items also helped designers make more varieties and styles of shoes. With the Industrial Revolution producers were able to make shoes more quickly and efficiently (Krick). The 20th Century brought countless colors, patterns heights, materials, and forms a footwear. These included the platform heel, steel-toed boots, and stiletto heels to name a few (“The History of Shoes”). At this time people were able to own multiple pairs of shoes for more...

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