February 25, 2015 4:35 pm

Men in heels: Bata Museum exhibit to look at history of men’s footwear

Heels may be a normal part of womenswear today, but men were early adopters of the fashion. The Bata Shoe Museum says its new exhibition, "Standing Tall: The Curious History of Men in Heels," opening May 8, will span four centuries of men's footwear.

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TORONTO – Heels may be a normal part of womenswear today, but men were early adopters of the fashion.

The Bata Shoe Museum says its new exhibition, “Standing Tall: The Curious History of Men in Heels,” opening May 8, will span four centuries of men’s footwear.

Men favouring big heels have ranged from privileged rulers to “hyper-sexualized rock stars,” the museum says.

“When heels were introduced into fashion at the turn of the 17th century, men were the first to adopt them, and they continued wearing heels as expressions of power and prestige for over 130 years,” said senior curator Elizabeth Semmelhack.

The exhibition will display rare examples of men’s heeled shoes from the 17th and 18th centuries, as well as 19th-century military boots, 1930s cowboy boots and 1940s biker boots.

More recent items include John Lennon’s “Beatle boot” from the 1960s, platform shoes worn by Elton John in the 1970s, and heels from haute couture collections.

© 2015 The Canadian Press

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