The Court Shoe: A Glimpse into the Life of an Icon

Posted by Samishka Maharaj on

Court in the Act!

One Shoe to Rule Them All

Before the mid-1600s, men’s and women’s shoes looked quite similar, believe it or not, but their respective footwear styles went their separate, distinct ways after that. Men’s shoes took a more practical route, and women’s shoes a more decorative one. Court shoes always leaned towards a more glamorous side, and owning a pair did actually mean that you were one of the fortunate in society. Hashtag blessed. And then the hashtag was brought down by political revolutions in both Europe and the United States, where the old pomp and splendour, razzle dazzle, was rejected by very anti-bourgeois (yes, that’s how it’s spelt) sentiment.

Guess who took over? It was the ballerina shoe; those ballet slippers. Court shoes and ballet slippers have been at odds ever since, haven’t they?

Ah, it didn’t last all that long, though, as court shoes came prancing back in when the ballet slipper just sort of faded into irrelevance in the 1800s. We sound harsh, don’t we? That’s the world of fashion, for you. It’s either slay or be slain!

With this comeback, they levelled up, too, reinforcing the heel with brass and being able to get higher than before. And, well, this led to more tinkering and innovation. Hot looks aren’t just conjured out of nowhere, you know.

Priority: Glam

Court shoes, or pumps, as we know them, really took off around 1954. At Christian Dior, a designer named Roger Vivier crafted the three-inch stiletto heel for the court shoe. It was a match made in Dior, and this pairing transformed the court shoe aesthetic as we know it.More and more, court shoes became known for their glamour, not their practicality, but this was no problem.

Ever since they made their appearance in fashion history, they’ve never left. Yes, court shoes may have stepped aside at times, while other style enjoyed the limelight, but they’ve always been a go-to pair for a classic touch or for iconic with a modern twist.

Elegance is Eternal

Although they really rose to iconic fame with the stiletto heel, the revival of the block heel has created variation for the court shoe look! With the hot rivalry between the two heels, the flaming designs that we’re being treated to, from both sides, are simply dazzling!

With court shoes, the classic silhouette can shine as it is, allowing its form to complement a glam evening dress. On the other hand, the court shoe itself can be dressed up, embellished with studs or faux-snakeskin. Look, the possibilities are endless, so whether you’re letting your heels make the statement with a patent or iridescent upper, or you’ve chosen something more subtle chic, court shoes make just about any look that much better and more feminine.

Oh, and before we forget – court shoes are known as pumps in the United States. Your internet searches might sometimes turn up with sneakers, tennis shoes, and the like, when looking for “court shoes” online, so just take this as a heads-up.
Whatever we call them in different parts of the world, one thing is universal: the court shoe silhouette is a wardrobe essential that you need right now when you click here