Title: Walking on Air - 1795
Collection: 300 years of Shoes
Garment: shoe of a Georgian woman
Materials: quilling paper strips, wrapping paper, card, embroidery thread, gold card, lacquer, tissue paper, pencil
This shoe reflects the pointed toes and low flared heels of late 18th century shoes; in particular a pair of red shoes with pointed toes of this period from the National Trust’s Killerton House collection.
Walking on Air is inspired by the airy lightness of the hummingbird; in particular by the brilliant red breast feathers and the green/brown back of the Rufous Hummingbird.
Inside this piece is a hand-drawn design created by The House of Embroidered Paper to reflect the beautiful paper labels of the makers of shoes from this era which often contained a dedication. The Killerton House shoes mentioned above contain labels with a dedication to The Duchess of Cumberland
There are examples of shoes in the Killerton House and Chertsey Museum collections in which the owner’s own name can be seen hand-written inside; one such example was bequeathed and the name of she who was to inherit the shoes is written there also.
The hand-written signature inside Walking on Air is a copy of the actual signature of Anne (née Luttrell), Duchess of Cumberland and Strathearn (1743-1808), Wife of Prince Henry, Duke of Cumberland and Strathearn. For, whilst we know she had shoes dedicated to her, we might also imagine that inside at least one of those she personally owned she might have written her name.
Walking on Air is beautifully presented in an acrylic display case: H 17cms, L 41cms, W 21cms
It is laid upon black velvet board.