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97/208/1 Shoes, pair, womens, 'Super Elevated Gillie', leather / cork / silk, Autumn/Winter collection, designed by Vivienne Westwood, London, England, 1993-1994. Click to enlarge.

Shoes by Vivienne Westwood

Designed
Vivienne Westwood (born in England, 1941) is a widely respected contemporary fashion designer who is known for her idiosyncratic designs. The pair of platform 'gillie' shoes are typical of her quirky designs that reinterpret traditional dress. Apart from the type of lacing at the vamp, Westwood's shoes bare little resemblance with the traditional gillie worn by Scottish Highland dancers. Rather, Westwood's shoes with their extreme heel and concealed plaform are reminiscent of fetish footwear. The juxtaposition of the traditional with the taboo is characteristic of Westwood's subversive designs.
The shoes were designed as part of Westwood's Anglomania' collection Autumn/Winter 1993 and received much publicity when the supermodel, Naomi Campbell fell on a London catwalk when wearing them. Westwood first designed shoes when she was in partnership with Malcolm McLaren. For their shop 'Sex' they sold stiletto shoes with leopard print uppers inspired by 1950s design. When her own label was established in 1980, Westwood designed two new shoes for each collection until 1988 when she standardised her shoe designs. With each collection since then, she has gradually exaggerated the basic style. The 'Super elevated gillie' which has a 9 inch heel and 4 inch platform was originally shown in the 'Portrait' collection of 1990. Westwood gets her handmade shoes made in the East End of London.

Vivienne Westwood began designing in 1971, helping her partner Malcolm McLaren and using their shop in London's King's Road as a showcase for their ideas. Their designs have been widely influential particularly with the development of the punk aesthetic and New Romantics Movement. Vivienne Westwood launched her own fashion house in 1980 and shows her collection in both London and Paris. Her designs are still considered influential and she is widely acknowledged as one of the most important designers of the late 20th century.

Vivienne Westwood is a very influential fashion designer and her designs are often imitated. The concealed platform on her elevated shoes has been widely copied.

Summary

Object No.

97/208/1

Object Statement

Shoes, pair, womens, 'Super Elevated Gillie', leather / cork / silk, Autumn/Winter collection, designed by Vivienne Westwood, London, England, 1993-1994

Physical Description

Pair of [handmade] womens shoes, size 7, with narrowed, gently squared off toe and concealed platform heel. The shoes consist blue leather punched with imitation crocodile pattern. The leather extends from the uppers down to completely cover the 9 inch heel and 4 inch platform. The uppers feature 3 pairs of lugs on vamp through which blue silk ribbons are threaded. Peaked toe cap which extends down over platform sole at front and sides. Shoes lined with natural coloured leather. Sock of natural coloured leather, stamped in gold with an image of an orb with a ring orbiting the centre and inscription "MADE IN ENGLAND/VIVIENNE WESTWOOD". Soles synthetic, stamped with "7".

Dimensions

Height

270 mm

Width

68 mm

Production

Notes

Vivienne Westwood (born in England, 1941) is a widely respected contemporary fashion designer who is known for her idiosyncratic designs. The pair of platform 'gillie' shoes are typical of her quirky designs that reinterpret traditional dress. Apart from the type of lacing at the vamp, Westwood's shoes bear little resemblance to the traditional gillie worn by Scottish Highland dancers. Rather, Westwood's shoes with their extreme heel and concealed platform are reminiscent of fetish footwear. The juxtaposition of the traditional with the taboo is characteristic of Westwood's subversive designs.

The shoes were designed as part of Westwood's 'Anglomania' collection Autumn/Winter 1993 and received much publicity when the supermodel, Naomi Campbell fell on a London catwalk when wearing them. Westwood first designed shoes when she was in partnership with Malcolm McClaren. For their shop 'Sex' they sold stiletto shoes with leopard print uppers inspired by 1950s design.

When her own label was established in 1980, Westwood designed two new shoes for each collection until 1988 when she standardised her shoe designs. With each collection since then, she has gradually exaggerated the basic style, the 'Super elevated gillie' with its 9 inch heel and 4 inch platform was originally shown in the 'Portrait' collection of 1990. Westwood gets her handmade shoes made in the East End of London.

The shoes were made in London for Vivienne Westwood.

Date of manufacture is Autumn/ Winter 1993/94

History

Notes

The shoes have purchased direct from Vivienne Westwood's studio in London and have not been worn.

Source

Credit Line

Purchased 1997

Acquisition Date

25 July 1997

Cite this Object

Harvard

Shoes by Vivienne Westwood 2020, Museum of Applied Arts & Sciences, accessed 19 October 2020, <https://ma.as/157248>

Wikipedia

{{cite web |url=https://ma.as/157248 |title=Shoes by Vivienne Westwood |author=Museum of Applied Arts & Sciences |access-date=19 October 2020 |publisher=Museum of Applied Arts & Sciences, Australia}}

Incomplete

This object record is currently incomplete. Other information may exist in a non-digital form. The Museum continues to update and add new research to collection records.