• P,M. Neist

#42 The Wedding Slippers

While doing research for the shoe project, I came upon a pair of 18th century wedding slippers that had been hand-embroidered with a pattern of flower baskets. One basket pointed outward, the other pointed back toward the bride. These were expensive shoes so the design choice was no mistake.

I have my own explanation for this intriguing asymmetry: read it in this week's story on medium.com.

Of course I had to create my own pair of wedding slippers, doctoring up a plain pair of golden ballet flats into something a bit more interesting but still romantic: hand-embroidered bouquets, flowery inner soles and a bit of ribbon. Each shoe contains a blessing for the wearer. Also, the bouquets do not match. If you read the story and look closely, you will understand why.

The shoes are both modest and extravagant.

The modesty comes through in the humility of generic ballet flats. They are a nod to my own wedding shoes from a long time ago. I had just finished graduate school when I flew back to my hometown near Dunkirk to get married. I carried with me the wedding dress I had handmade (a good thing since the airline lost the rest of our luggage). A couple of days before the wedding, I bought a pair of plain white shoes. They were all I could afford.

The extravagance of this week's art is in the hand embroidered tiny bouquet, the careful choice of fabric for the inner soles, the hand-written blessings and that perfect but of sating ribbon that had been waiting tor the right moment.

There is great love in handmade things.

Oh! and one last thing: I promised I would give away a pair of shoes. Here they are! The slippers are waiting to be claimed. They are a size 8 US. Email me to put your name in the hat.


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