Saturday, July 28, 2012

To pink or not to pink

That is the question I've been fussing with all of last evening and this morning. I have the pieces cut out for the shoes and I need to decide what I'm doing with them. The two shoes I'm using as design inspiration are both heavily pinked/slashed/cutte in intricate lace-like patterns. They're pretty spectacular.

The first pair is in the MFA in Boston. They have narrow tongues, pinked side openings, and large round medallions framed by scallops. The decoration is on the quarters as well, wrapping clear around the foot.  The leather is alum tawed and the shoes look incredibly delicate. They probably did, in fact, fit like a glove.  My second pair of inspiration shoes reside in the Deutsches Ledermuseum and are dated 1590-1600. These have intricate cutwork as well. The tongue isn't as long as on the other pair and the latchets are more narrow. It also is a very delicate looking shoe. Both appear lightweight and flexible and perfect for wearing with an overshoe/zoccoli of some type. I don't want to make another pair of tall chopine style shoes, but I have been considering the shorter pantofles/pantobles/mules/whatever they are called.  Since I don't have the tools and technique to do lasted type shoes, but enjoy making these soft slippers to match my individual dresses, having a pair of overshoes easily worn and easily slipped off and on seems a good idea for outdoor wear.  Whether I will get them done for the Italian Renaissance Costuming Challenge is another matter entirely.

But, back to slashing.  I have the pieces for my shoes cut out in blue. I wanted leather since I prefer to work with that, but since this is a first run of the latchet style and I found the perfect color, I'm basically doing a mockup-I-intend-to-wear-for-a-while in vinyl. Yeah, I know, I'm not all that thrilled either. I tested a bit of pinking on a scrap and it looks like it will work. The only concern is that it doesn't show very much. I'm hoping that will change as I move my foot. I will  be lining the shoes so the interior of the vinyl doesn't show, so, if I pinked them, a bit of gold lining might flash which would be fun. I'm also planning gold ribbons through the latchets. The biggest cons to pinking are stability of the shoe and whether the cuts will cause gaping and distortion and time. On the other hand, I've already wasted quite a bit of time worrying about this, so doing it might at least make some of that time worthwhile.

Oh, and since we're talking slashing, there's also the question of the sleeves.  I think they're done, but maybe they need some cuts and pinks. What do you think?

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