Monday, January 4, 2016

About Stilettos

About Stilettos

The stiletto is more than a popular shoe for sex kittens and fashion lovers. This iconic high-heeled symbol of power and style is an essential accessory for label-obsessed trendsetters and pop culture lovers. A historic embodiment of heightened sexuality and glamour, the stiletto is one type of shoe that will never go out of style.


    The first high-heeled shoe made its debut at the wedding of Italian Catherine de Medici in 1533 to Henry, the Duke of Orleans. French shoe designer Andre Perugia designed the first modern stiletto for Parisian singer Mistinguett in the 1940s. The stiletto was revived and debuted in the collection of Christian Dior designed by famed shoe guru Roger Vivier.


    The name stiletto has its origin in Greek and Italian. The prefix stylus is from the Greek word "stylos" or pillar. The word stiletto also refers to the Italian word for small metal dagger. The stiletto has its place in Hollywood film history as Jayne Mansfield boasted a collection of over 200 pairs of high heels, and Elizabeth Taylor features her stilettos in a memorable scene in the movie "Butterfield 8." Rocker Debbie Harry was a singer in a group called The Stilettos before creating a worldwide sensation as the leader of Blondie.


    Stilettos are found in fashionable department stores, boutiques and fetish shops. Because of the erotic nature and sexual connotation of a woman wearing high-heeled stilettos, these shoes are favored among exotic dancers, sex workers, prostitutes and fetishists. The heel height of the stiletto can be as tall as 5 inches with a toe box as small as 1/2 inch. Pointed-toe stilettos are commonly referred to as the standard stiletto style.


    Stilettos require the wearer to stand on her tiptoes while walking. The discomfort and pain of wearing stilettos is legendary, as podiatrists warn women each year of the hazard of wearing these popular shoes. Medical doctors suggest that stilettos may cause damage to the tendons and pain in the back and legs.

Expert Insight

    The stiletto was no longer the favored shoe of the fashionable woman in the late 1960s and 1970s as the mod and hippie style became more prevalent and popular. Manolo Blahnik updated the stiletto in 1974 with his reintroduction of the famous high-heeled wonder, which he called the "new" heel. The stiletto became a wardrobe staple of power-suit-wearing corporate women in the late 1980s and early 1990s.

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