Book Review: Shoes A-Z
Toronto, Canada, has always been my shoe mecca. Not only is that where I discovered Fluevog shoes, but it’s also home to the Bata Shoe Museum, which I had the fortune to visit back in the late 1990s.
I highly recommend checking out the Bata’s website for virtual exhibitions, like this one on the evolution of high heels.
Several months ago, the museum’s founding curator, Jonathan Walford, released a book called Shoes A-Z, and I have to say it is an impressive tome.
This 250-page compendium of designers, brands, and manufacturers is interspersed with a ton of great images and vintage advertisements. It also features a foreword by Peter Fox, John Fluevog’s former business partner who started his own line in 1980.
In my opinion, the 10-page glossary of construction terms and materials alone is worth the price, but then again, I may be more obsessive than the casual shoe hound…
Overall, the book is very accessible and paints a very clear picture of the evolution of shoes without a chronology of any sort. Want to know what happened to that one brand that disappeared for awhile and re-emerged? Curious what the big deal is about Manolo Blahnik? Want to know which brands are still made in the USA versus abroad? Shoes A-Z is a great place to start.