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From the Collection of Brighton Historical Society First Floor Bayside Arts and Cultural Centre (Old Brighton Town Hall) Corner Carpenter and Wilson Streets Brighton Victoria

Black silk linear quilted uppers of single piece construction with feature centre front vamp seam. Horsehair wadding can be seen along the side of the forefoot where the upper is coming away from the leather soles. Approx 4.5 cm plain black silk covered heel with leather top piece missing from right shoe. Both shoes feature the head of a small preserved mink with glass eyes. The toppling of the vamp features a decorative strip of mink fur. Inside of both shoes is a gold printed manufacturers label on the black silk insole.
4 1/2
Attached Files
Object Registration
victoriana, victorian black clothing, c1890s, mink pelt, taxidermy, 1990s fashion
Historical information
Di Reidie purchased these c1890s shoes in c1990s and worn them to approx three events within the last 25 - 30 years. Di enjoyed the novelty and conversation they would inspire due to their unusual appearance by modern standards. The wearing of these shoes is indicative of Di's playful approach to clothing and life.
When Made
Made By
Kendal Milne & Co (Retailer)
Di Reidie was a volunteer and president of Brighton Historical Society from 1999 - 2016. Originally from New Zealand, Di and her family have lived in Male Street, Brighton for many years and been active community members. During her time at BHS, Di has contributed significantly to the establishment, preservation and promotion of the Costume collection as well as the Brighton Historical society as a whole. Di was also a vintage clothing dealer and amassed her own significant costume and ephemera collection.
The decorative preserved mink pelt with head featured on vamp of these shoes is typical of Victorian era interest in and prevalent use of preserved animals for decorative purposes in clothing, millinery and household adornment. This fashion reflected social positing of oneself as being affluent, educated and worldly.
Following the death of Queen Victoria's husband Prince Albert in 1861, the Queen's approach to mourning his death influenced social conventions for the public with the wearing of black becoming a significant aspect of Victorian fashions.

Kendal Milne & Co was a large department store on Deansgate, Manchester. It has traded under various names and owners since it opened in 1832; it traded as Kendal Milne & Co from 1862-1919, and continued to be known by this name for many years after. The store is currently owned by the House of Fraser department store chain and known as House of Fraser Manchester.
Inscriptions & Markings
Manufacturers label - Made expressly for Kendall Milne and Co, Manchester.
Last updated
2 Sep 2019 at 8:59PM