Fashion Myths – Victorian Fetish boots

Fetish boots are most often identified as dating from the 1890s or early 1900s, probably because of their high lace and button styles. However, most of the fetish boots I have seen that are identified as being that early are usually from the 1930s or 40s and made in a nostalgic style – referencing the pre WW1 fashion for high boots. The high, slender heel like those illustrated below was not introduced until the late 1920s and was in use, with little change, into the mid 1950s.

Article from February 1939 English magazine ‘Gay Book’ See cover illustrated in my November 17 post

Pair of thigh high Fetish boots from the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, c. 1930s

 

18 thoughts on “Fashion Myths – Victorian Fetish boots

    • Those red ones in your link look 1920s to me. I have seen a picture of a prostitute wearing red knee-high boots in the mid 1920s and I think the photo was from London, but I don’t remember now (it was one of those pictures I came across in a book and read the caption…) Black boots seem to be more popular for the kinky dominatrix-dress-ups.

      • I am glad that you see it like that. I was also astonished back then reading how LACMA dated these boots.
        I have a similar pair like the red ones from vam.ac.uk:
        https://twitter.com/manoleat/status/498552390225002497
        That doesn’t tell anything about their age of course. National Shoe Stores and Regent Shoe Stores like some others were advertising regularily in these magazine during the 1930s. They even stated “High Heels up to 8 inches”. The earliest issue I own is from 1928, december 1st. It has an ad from Hyman, 19 Wardour Street. The other stores have been in Wardour Street also. Maybe one of them has been the successor to Hyman.
        A late comment but I just found this blog entry.

    • I am quite sure they are very late 1920s or 1930s. I recall seeing a dominatrix wearing crotch-high boots in a c. 1930 German cartoon but that was years ago and I have no remembrance of where I saw that now. The L.A. boots were inspired by turn-of-the-century lace up boots, but they were made later – as the heels attest. A lot of fetishwear refers to older styles – corsets, torpedo bras, garter belts, seamed stockings…

      • It looks the same with the Maniatis boots of the MET: http://metmuseum.org/collection/the-collection-online/search?ft=*&who=Maniatis+Bottier%2c+Paris
        Bottier only means bootmaker…and Maniatis was his greek family name. I found somewhere the information that he settled in Paris in the late 1920s. So the shown boots were made most likely in the 1930s. I think I will read the biography “Une tête libre” of his 1942 born son Jean-Marc Maniatis, a well known french coiffeur. He should know best when his father stepped into the Paris shoemakers world.

        • I didn’t know about those examples at the Met. I agree, they are later – 1920s-30s but in a ‘vintage’ style. Those red ones are spectacular!

          • A reply to an old blog entry but it is not so long ago I acquired these boots. I thought you maybe like to see them because you were amazed by the red Maniatis boots. These now are much higher but have a lace up design and are also younger I guess. I have at least 3 pictures of the original wearer that were printed in a book from 1957.

            Ein von @mrmanoleat gepostetes Foto am 27. Jun 2015 um 9:03 Uhr

          • WOW! You win – those are THE best pair I have ever seen and that I suspect are in existence! Congrats on finding such an amazing example.

          • Oh…um…thank you! I didn’t expect that reaction. That makes them even more valuable for me. Yes, they found a funny way to me. I couldn’t believe it either. Just in case you would like to have a “closer” look at them I would be happy to send you some detail pictures.
            In my Instagram gallery you will find some other vintage ones of my collection although less interesting of course.

  1. I have a pair of vintage black leather thigh high fetish boots that I would be interested in selling for the right price and I was wondering if you had any advice as to what the best avenues for selling them would be? They were made in London by the late Spyros Andrea of Cypriana Shoes. A real artist in his craft. They they lace all the way up the front and rise all the way to the panty line. They are in very good condition.
    Let me know what you think.
    Thanks!

    • Can you send a photo of the boots to kickshaw@rogers.com? If they are very modern (last twenty-five years) I probably wouldn’t be interested, however, I know of a German collector who might, although his collection is mostly older styles as well.

      • Hahaha, yes you do…or maybe you also know another one. 😉
        What happened, did you buy them? Anyhow it would be great to see somepictures.
        I know a lady from Sydney who owns at least two pairs of Cypriana boots, even one very high ballet pair.

        • Never got the pictures…

          I did get some boots you would like though.. but from another source. Not as over the top fetish in style, but still very nice. I don’t have them photographed yet, but I will photograph them in the next photo session.

          • Ah yes, the old problem…or maybe she thinks you didn’t react on her comment. I also don’t get any notices when someone replies to my comment here.
            This was the Cypriana business by the way (in case you didn’t know it): http://www.bowesandbounds.org/profiles/blogs/the-kinky-cobbler-of-myddleton-road-1
            Oh, don’t get me wrong: They doesn’t have to be fetish in style. I am curious about all styles. And even if I don’t like the style itself I still am able to admire the creativity put into them or the craftmanship.
            Definately looking forward to see yours.

          • I didn’t know you didn’t get a notice that your post had been responded to… that makes a bit of a difference! I will contact her directly then. Thanks for letting me know.
            Jonathan

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