Platform sandals with picket sole

Platform boot, ankle size

Platform sneakers are sneakers, boots, or sandals with an apparent thick sole, often within the vary of three–10 cm (1–4 in). Platform sneakers may additionally be excessive heels, during which case the heel is raised considerably greater than the ball of the foot. Excessive heights, of each the only real and heel, will be present in fetish footwear akin to ballet boots, the place the only real could also be as much as 20 cm (8 in) excessive and the heels as much as 40 cm (16 in) or extra. The only of a platform shoe can have a steady uniform thickness, have a wedge, a separate block or a stiletto heel. Elevating the ankle will increase the danger of a sprained ankle.[1]

Historical past[edit]

Platform sneakers are identified in lots of cultures. Probably the most well-known predecessor of platform sneakers are the Zoccoli in Venice of the 15th century, designed with the purposeful objective of avoiding moist ft when the pavements have been flooded. Relying on the present shoe vogue platform sneakers are roughly standard. Within the 1970s they have been widespread in each genders in Europe. In the present day, they’re most popular by girls.[2]


A maid carrying circle-type pattens: Piety in Pattens or Timbertoe on Tiptoe, England 1773

After their use in Historical Greece for elevating the peak of vital characters within the Greek theatre and their comparable use by high-born prostitutes or courtesans in London within the sixteenth century, platform sneakers, known as Pattens, are thought to have been worn in Europe within the eighteenth century to keep away from the muck of city streets. Of the identical sensible origins are Japanese geta. There may additionally be a connection to the buskins of Historical Rome, which often had very thick soles to provide added top to the wearer. One other instance of a platform shoe that functioned as safety from grime and dirt is the Okobo- “Okobo” referring to the sound that the picket shoe makes when strolling. Relationship again to 18th century Japan, the Okobo was worn by maikos, or geishas, throughout their apprenticeships. Much like the Okobo, picket Kabkabs have been named after the sound they made upon marble flooring. Worn by Lebanese girls between the 14th and 17th centuries, the straps have been usually comprised of velvet, leather-based, or silk whereas the picket stilts have been adorned with silver or pearl. The traditional Indian Paduka, which interprets to footprints of the Gods, was usually sported by the higher echelon as a method to mark their standing. The picket platforms have been typically carved into completely different animal shapes and adorned with ivory and silver.[3] In historic China, males wore black boots with very thick soles comprised of layers of white cloths. This type of shoes is commonly worn in the present day onstage for Peking opera.[4] Throughout the Qing dynasty, aristocratic Manchu girls wore a type of platform shoe with a separate excessive heel, a method that was later adopted in Europe in the course of the 1590s.[5]


Platform sneakers loved some reputation in the US, Europe and the UK from the 1930s to the 1950s however not almost to the extent of their reputation from the 1960s to the 1980s.

20th century[edit]


Within the early 1930s, Moshe (Morris) Kimel designed the primary fashionable model of the platform shoe for actress Marlene Dietrich. Kimel, a Jew, escaped Berlin, Germany, and settled in the US along with his household in 1939 and opened the Kimel shoe manufacturing unit in Los Angeles. The design quickly turned very talked-about amongst Beverly Hills elite.
In 1938, The Rainbow was a platform sandal designed by well-known shoe designer, Salvatore Ferragamo. “The Rainbow” was created and was the primary occasion of the platform shoe returning in fashionable days within the West.[citation needed] The platform sandal was designed for Judy Garland, an American singer, actress, and vaudevillian. This shoe was a tribute to Judy Garland’s signature music “Over the Rainbow” carried out within the Wizard of Ozin 1939. The shoe was a crafted utilizing uniquely formed slabs of cork that have been lined in suede to construct up the wedge and gold kidskin was used for the straps.[6] His creation was a results of experimentations with new supplies due to wartime rationing throughout World Warfare II.[citation needed] Historically heels have been constructed up with leather-based, however due to the rationing of leather-based, he experimented with wooden and cork [7] The colours and design of this shoe nonetheless resemble fashionable shoe requirements in the present day.

Within the 1940s, platforms have been designed with a excessive arch, however as exemplified right here, they originated with the heel elevated solely barely above the toes. The platform brings a heavy trying basis to the wearer that’s in direct polarity to the stiletto heel. With its reconfiguration of the arch and construction of attenuated insubstantiality, the excessive heel suggests the anti-gravitational impact of the dancer en pointe. Quite the opposite, the platform shows weightiness extra just like the flat steps of contemporary dance.[8]

Within the 1950s, platform sneakers weren’t favored in the identical approach that they was once. Trend returned to the extra elegantly formed shoe.[9]

1960s and 1970s[edit]

A resurgence of curiosity in platform sneakers as vogue started as early as 1967 (showing in each commercials and articles in 1970 problems with Seventeen journal), and continued by way of to 1976 in Europe and Britain, once they fairly immediately went out of vogue. The fad lasted even additional within the US, lasting till as late because the early 1980s.[10] Originally of the fad, they have been worn primarily by younger girls of their teenagers and twenties, and sometimes by youthful ladies, older girls, and (notably in the course of the disco period) by younger males.[11][12] Platform sneakers have been thought of the “occasion shoe.”[13][unreliable source?] Disco-goers used their sneakers to carry consideration to themselves on the dance flooring.[13][unreliable source?] 70s platform sneakers have been introduced in dramatic and showy methods akin to with glitter or tiny lights.[13][unreliable source?]

In 1972, at 219 Bowery in Manhattan, Carole Basetta developed a particular mildew for making platform sneakers and was profitable in promoting custom-made sneakers to individuals akin to David Bowie, David Johanson of the New York Dolls, and several other different punk artists.[14]

Though platform sneakers did present added top with out the discomfort of spike heels, they appear to have been worn primarily for the sake of attracting consideration.[citation needed] Many glam rock musicians wore platform sneakers as a part of their act.[citation needed] David Bowie, an icon of glam rock within the 1970s, famously wore platform sneakers whereas performing as his alter ego Ziggy Stardust. Bowie is considered an icon of androgynous vogue, famous for his queering of gender and efficiency type.[15][16]

Whereas all kinds of types have been standard throughout this era, together with boots, espadrilles, oxfords, sneakers, and sandals of all description, with soles fabricated from wooden, cork, or artificial supplies, the most well-liked type of the late 1960s and early 1970s was a easy quarter-strap sandal with tan water buffalo-hide straps, on a beige suede-wrapped cork wedge-heel platform sole. These have been initially launched below the model identify Kork-Ease however the excessive reputation supported many imitators. Remarkably, there was little or no variation in type, and most of that variation was restricted to variations in top.


Because the fad progressed, producers like Candie’s stretched the envelope of what was thought of too outrageous to put on, whereas others, like Famolare and Cherokee of California, launched “consolation” platforms, designed to mix the added top of platforms with the help and luxury of sneakers, and even orthopedic sneakers, and by the point the fad lastly fizzled within the late 1980s, women and girls of all ages have been carrying them. It might even be a by-product of this fad that Scandinavian clogs, which have been thought of slightly outrageous within the late 1960s and early 1970s, had change into basic by the 1980s.


Vivienne Westwood, the UK clothier, re-introduced the excessive heeled platform shoe into excessive vogue within the early 1990s; it was whereas carrying a pair of Tremendous-Elevated Gillie with five-inch platforms and nine-inch heels that the supermodel Naomi Campbell fell on the catwalk at a vogue present.[17] Nevertheless, they didn’t catch on rapidly and platform sneakers solely started to resurface in mainstream vogue within the late 1990s, thanks partially to the UK band the Spice Ladies. The all-girl group was usually seen in tall platform sneakers and boots. The footwear model Buffalo created the well-known platform sneakers worn by members of the group.[18]

The UK (and European) expertise of platform sneakers was considerably completely different from that of the US.[19] the lengthy pointed sneakers of the early 2000s, giving an elongated look to the foot, have been extra standard within the US than within the UK.

21st century[edit]


The platform shoe resurfaced in reputation within the early 2000s when the YSL Tribute Sandal appeared in 2004, rapidly gaining reputation by celebrities and the style world for its intercourse attraction and added consolation of a platform sole.[18] The shoe is sustained to be launched season after season, regardless of adjustments in inventive administrators.[20]


Throughout the late 2010s, platform boots turned modern as a result of a resurgence of curiosity in 1970s vogue. These included so-called “nothing sneakers” with clear Perspex soles, and mule sandals.[21][22]

Notable wearers[edit]

Picture gallery[edit]

See additionally[edit]


  1. ^ O’Keeffe, Linda (2005). Schuhe. Köln: Könemann Verlag. ISBN 3-8331-1098-8.
  2. ^ Weber, Paul. Schuhe. Drei Jahrtausende in Bildern. Aarau: AT Verlag. ISBN 3-85502-064-7.
  3. ^ “The Historical past of Platform Heels.” Fabulous Platform Footwear,
  4. ^ Employees (2006–2010). “Traits of Peking Opera Costumes(4)”. 1155815 – Chinese language Folklores & Festivals. 1155815 – Chinese language Folklores & Festivals Web site. Archived from the unique on 16 Could 2013. Retrieved Three June 2012.
  5. ^ Debra Mancoff; Michal Raz-Russo (26 July 2011). “Perspective and Altitude: A Brief Historical past of Footwear”. Encyclopædia Britannica Weblog – Info Matter. Encyclopædia Britannica, Inc. Retrieved Three June 2012.
  6. ^ Salvatore Ferragamo | Sandals | Italian | The Met. (n.d.). Retrieved April 26, 2016, from
  7. ^ DeMello, M. (2009). Ft and footwear: A cultural encyclopedia. Santa Barbara, CA: Greenwood Press/ABC-CLIO.
  8. ^ Perspective and Altitude: A Brief Historical past of Footwear | Britannica Weblog. (n.d.). Retrieved April 26, 2016, from
  9. ^
  10. ^ Stranton, Tracey. “Platform Footwear”. Add Top. Retrieved 24 August 2016.
  11. ^
  12. ^ “The Historical past Of The Platform Shoe- 70s, 90s, And In the present day”.
  13. ^ a b c “Trend Archives: A Have a look at the Historical past of Platform Footwear”. Three October 2015.
  14. ^ Image of a basic 1970s males’s platform shoe for going out dancing at a disco from an Web wardrobe costume rental website: Archived 29 August 2010 on the Wayback Machine
  15. ^ Singer, Olivia. “Trend’s Most Highly effective Androgynous Icons”. Retrieved 17 April 2018.
  16. ^ Hobbs, Julia. “David Bowie: Our Fashion Hero”. Retrieved 17 April 2018.
  17. ^ “BBC Information – Vivienne Westwood shoe exhibition at Bowes Museum”. 10 June 2011. Retrieved 13 February 2012.
  18. ^ a b Alexander, Ella. “Most Iconic Footwear”. Retrieved 17 April 2018.
  19. ^ Nicholas Kirkwood (1 February 2012). “The World Excessive Heels”. Retrieved 29 February 2012.
  20. ^ Cartner-Morley, Jess (10 Could 2011). “The rise of the facility platform”. the Guardian. Retrieved 17 April 2018.
  21. ^ Carreon, Justine (23 March 2017). “Make Room in Your Closet for the Barbie Mule”. ELLE.
  22. ^ “Proper Now, the Chicest Factor Is a Nothing Shoe”. Vogue.
  23. ^ Drake-Flam, Danielle (31 August 2020). “Ariana Grande Pairs 6-Inch Heels With Purple Leather-based Bodysuit for MTV VMAs 2020”. Yahoo. Retrieved 25 October 2020.
  24. ^ Regan, Jenny (23 October 2020). “Each Single Look in Ariana Grande’s Glam ‘Positions’ Video: See Pictures”. Billboard. Retrieved 25 October 2020.
  25. ^ “Elton John: The Rock & Fashion Icon By means of the Years”. Billboard. 10 November 2017. Retrieved 25 October 2020.
  26. ^ “Elton John sells his garments for charity”. 12 December 2009. Retrieved 25 October 2020.