Stuart Weitzman is best known for his elegant and innovative shoe designs, employing rare materials and unexpected constructions—from his diamond-encrusted “Million dollar sandals” to the engineering wonder of his improbably high heels. Weitzman’s passion for footwear extends to collecting exceptional historic examples. Walk This Way brings together over a hundred stunning women’s shoes from his collection, which has grown through gifts from his wife, Jane Gershon Weitzman. Spanning two centuries and several continents, these numerous and varied types and styles celebrate rare, beautiful, popular, and significant shoes.
With over 180 illustrations, this dazzling book reveals the evolution of women’s footwear in parallel with changes in women’s lives. Posters, photographs, film stills, and other images create the historic and cultural context. In an introductory essay, Stuart Weitzman discusses his collection and his career. Valerie Paley contemplates women’s roles in designing and making shoes, as well as the choices that shoes can represent. In a fascinating essay Edward Maeder explores the collection by tracing the influences of our fads in dance, our love of movies, and our tastes from the Jazz Age and Art Deco to Pop Art, while also evoking political and social concerns from women’s suffrage to equal rights and feminism.
Edward Maeder is a leading costume and textile historian and curator, and the founding director of the Bata Shoe Museum in Toronto.
Stuart A. Weitzman is an American designer, and founder of the eponymous international, luxury shoe company, Stuart Weitzman.
Valerie Paley is director of the New-York Historical Society’s Center for Women’s History