gratitude-a-thon day 1001:shoes: pleasure and pain

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This was my favorite shoe of the 300 on display. So detailed, with all that beautiful ribbon. But look at the bottom, how do you walk in these? Maybe you just sit. They were from the late 1800’s.

If you’re looking for something to take your mind off politics, or your messy closet, or your whiney kids, or you have the winter doldrums, and you live in the Boston area, and you kind of love shoes, or you don’t, or you just like a good outing, or you don’t feel like doing your work today, and want to play hooky, or you like to pretend you’re Carrie in Sex and the City, you should go to the Peabody Essex Museum and see their fabulous exhibit–Shoes: Pleasure and Pain.

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For bound feet, these delicate looking shoes were not meant for walking.

Sadly, I had never been to the PEM before and I am putting myself in the naughty chair for that, because it’s a really great place, with an unbelievably good gift shop, which happened to be closed on the day we were there, which happened to be my birthday, which was an unfortunate gift to me, because they were actually selling SHOES!

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I was blown away by the detailed etching on the toe of these shoes.

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So many of the shoes were intricate.  These boasted  real parakeet wings and at the toe, silver parakeet claws. They sort of made me want to vomit.

Anyway, this exhibit, which I thought might just be a room or two is like, four or five rooms, filled with the history of those things we wear on our feet. Anyone who knows me knows I have difficult feet to say the least, and that it is a part time job trying to find shoes that are cute, fit and don’t exacerbate my foot issues. There were a plethora of “only in my dreams” shoes for me here, but I decided to just let go and enjoy.

Aside from being beautiful pieces of art, this exhibit talks about the historical significance and transformative power of shoes. It’s beautifully done and fabulously interesting. It’s both fun and educational. But just make sure the gift shop is open when you go! There are shoes in there (and yes, some that looked like even I could wear them).

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Cinderella’s glass slipper. Yup, it was actually glass.

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Louboutin party shoes. Ah, a girl can dream.

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The Chanel mary jane. I love a mary.

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The bane of my existence, the desire of my heart: the heel.

One thought on “gratitude-a-thon day 1001:shoes: pleasure and pain

  1. Thanks for these photos! This is my kind of museum exhibit! Wish I lived closer. I also couldn’t possibly wear any of these shoes anymore. Well, maybe the Mary Janes. BTW, was your bday the 31st? Same as my niece. You’re both sweet souls! Happy belated birthday! 👠🎉🎈🎂

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