Lotus shoes
c. 1915
5. in HIGH
(12.70 cm HIGH)
Gift of Sally Hughes

The donor's mother acquired these shoes around the middle of the 20th century.

This pair of Lotus slippers, small shoes for adult women, is made of cotton with small bits of silk used for trim. The shoe and its boot-like top are of black cotton sateen. A band of purple silk brocaded ribbon is at the bottom edge of the boot-like top. The front of the shoe is decorated with a purple silk inset. The shoes are embellished on either side of the toes with a hand embroidered flower with leaves. The back of the shoe has one padded light blue layer at either heel. The soles of the shoes, made of an unbleached cotton, are quilted in a diaper pattern. The shoes go into a sharp point at the front. They are lined in blue cotton.

Shoes of this type were worn by Chinese women whose feet had been deliberately stunted in growth in early childhood.

Used: female ~ adult | China

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