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"I did not have three thousand pairs of shoes. I had one thousand and sixty."--Imelda Marcos In recent years shoes have become objects of fanatical devotion, as covetable designs have gained iconic status and shoe designers have become heroes of popular culture. From Christian Louboutin's signature red sole and the Manolo Blahnik heels that helped to define Sex and the City's Carrie Bradshaw to the eco-friendly footwear of the future, shoes are now a fashion statement all their own. Is there such a thing as a leading shoe fashion anymore? The silhouettes, colors, and details on the feet of models and in the pages of fashion magazines used to be the ultimate in style, but they no longer represent all fashion footwear any more than haute couture represents all fashionable clothing. Renowned fashion specialist Jonathan Walford recounts the fascinating history of more than 350 leading women's shoe designers and manufacturers who have shaped modern footwear over the last sixty years. A rich array of sketches, photographs, and advertisements highlight superlative craftsmanship and lasting trends. Featuring designs by Bally, Beverly Feldman, Camper, Charles Jourdan, Chie Mihara, Christian Louboutin, Ferragamo, Herman Delman, Jimmy Choo, Joan & David, Kenneth Cole, Manolo Blahnik, Maud Frizon, Roger Vivier, Rupert Sanderson, and Sergio Rossi.
There are, I suppose, few places even on the East Coast of England more lonely and remote than the village of Little Sundersley and the country that surrounds it. Far from any railway, and some miles distant from any considerable town, it remains an outpost of civilization, in which primitive manners and customs and old-world tradition linger on into an age that has elsewhere forgotten them. In the summer, it is true, a small contingent of visitors, adventurous in spirit, though mostly of sedate and solitary habits, make their appearance to swell its meagre population, and impart to the wide stretches of smooth sand that fringe its shores a fleeting air of life and sober gaiety; but in late September-the season of the year in which I made its acquaintance-its pasture-lands lie desolate, the rugged paths along the cliffs are seldom trodden by human foot, and the sands are a desert waste on which, for days together, no footprint appears save that left by some passing sea-bird. I had been assured by my medical agent, Mr. Turcival, that I should find the practice of which I was now taking charge "an exceedingly soft billet, and suitable for a studious man;" and certainly he had not misled me, for the patients were, in fact, so few that I was quite concerned for my principal, and rather dull for want of work. Hence, when my friend John Thorndyke, the well-known medico-legal expert, proposed to come down and stay with me for a weekend and perhaps a few days beyond, I hailed the proposal with delight, and welcomed him with open arms.
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