The World at Your Feet by Elizabeth Semmelhack
The Bata Shoe Museum, the largest shoe collection in the world, celebrates fabulous footwear across the ages in beautifully curated displays, exhibiting styles from tiny Chinese bound-foot shoes to French chestnut-crushing clogs and Elton John's over-the-top silver platform boots. The collection has become a source of inspiration for designers, including Manolo Blahnik, Christian Louboutin, Nicholas Kirkwood, and Sophia Webster, among others. Many of the shoes are as relevant today as when they were created: anyone who has worn flip-flops will recognize ancient Egyptian sandals, and men's thigh-high boots from seventeenth-century France are virtually identical to those worn by women today. High-fashion styles by famed designers such as Ferragamo and Vivienne Westwood are always a draw, but one of the collection's most popular features is its celebrity footwear, including Queen Victoria's ballroom slippers, Elvis Presley's blue patent loafers, and John Lennon's Beatle boot. The 100 iconic shoes featured in the volume tell the story of humanity, revealing ways of life and entire civilizations through its shoes.