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Pair of shoes

Pair of shoes

  • Place of origin:

    USA (made)

  • Date:

    ca. 1940 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Saks Fifth Avenue (retailer)

  • Materials and Techniques:


  • Credit Line:

    Given by Kim P Sands in memory of Cecile 'Bat' Stuart

  • Museum number:

    T.83:1, 2-2009

  • Gallery location:

    In Storage

This pair of gold painted leather shoes is a reinterpretation by New York retailer Saks Fifth Avenue of a particular 1940s heel shape designed by André Perugia. They also sold their own line of shoes, primarily created by innovative couture shoe designers Charles and Mabel Julianelli. The popular wedge design made famous by Ferragamo is seen here with an unusual cut-out base, an interesting gold painted on leather effect, and striking red leather trim and lining.
These shoes were worn by vivacious London socialite Cecile Tonge Stuart, a licensed aviator who was nicknamed 'Bat' for her busy night life. The shoes are significant both for their intriguing design, as well as their place in the wardrobe of a glamorous woman.

Physical description

Gold leather closed-toe shoe with raised platform heel and crossed leather ankle strap. Lined in red leather, the shoe is fastened by a gold coloured rectangular buckle and has a 8cm heel.

Place of Origin

USA (made)


ca. 1940 (made)


Saks Fifth Avenue (retailer)

Materials and Techniques


Marks and inscriptions

'Saks Fifth Avenue'


Length: 19.2 cm, Height: 15.5 cm, Width: 7 cm

Object history note

RF File: 2007/530

Descriptive line

Pair of shoes, F, gold leather, Saks Fifth Avenue, USA, ca. 1940.

Labels and date

Label for the exhibition Shoes: Pleasure and Pain
Exceptionally Modern Perugia
André Perugia is considered the first great shoe designer of the 20th century. His elegant and unusual designs set him apart. Although Perugia was famous for his made-to-order shoes, he also designed a ready-to-wear line. In this extraordinary pair of evening sandals, sold by New York retailer Saks Fifth Avenue, the wedge-style heel is carved out, leaving the instep unsupported.
Gold leather wedges
André Perugia for Saks Fifth Avenue
Gilded leather and leather
Worn by the pilot Cecile Tonge Stuart
Given by Kim P. Sands in memory of Cecile ‘Bat’ Stuart
V&A: T.83:1, 2-2009 [2015-2016]




Accessories; Fashion; Footwear


Textiles and Fashion Collection

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