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Shoes, Shoes, Shoes!

If you love fancy footwear as much you love the holidays, consider our collectible shoe ornaments

December in New York sees the return of beloved holiday traditions: the lighting of the Rockefeller Center tree, the precision of the Rockettes in the Radio City Christmas Spectacular, The Met’s Neapolitan Baroque Crèche…and the newest batch of shoe ornaments from The Met Store. Carefully modeled after stylish, surprising, and simply fabulous originals in the holdings of the Museum’s Costume Institute, this festive footwear makes an ideal addition to any fashion-forward tree.

Red Flair

Left: Shoes. J. Ferry (French). Leather, ca. 1906. Brooklyn Museum Costume Collection at The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Gift of the Brooklyn Museum, 2009; Gift of Mrs. Frederick H. Prince, Jr., 1967 (2009.300.1580a, b). Right: Red Pump with Bow Shoe Ornament, $28

This bow-accented bauble replicates one of a pair of elegant kidskin pumps with cloth bows in The Met collection, originally designed in 1906 by J. Ferry of Paris for a wealthy American client. Found in near-perfect condition, these high-quality shoes in vivid red were intended for dressy day wear.

Spectator Sport

Left: ShoesSeymour Troy Originals (American).  Leather, plastic; 1942. Brooklyn Museum Costume Collection at The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Gift of the Brooklyn Museum, 2009; Gift of the Guild of Better Shoe Manufacturers, 1948 (2009.300.4540). Right: Spectator Slingback Shoe Ornament, $28

This eye-catching ornament looks to a stylish leather and plastic shoe designed in 1942 by Seymour Troy Originals, a New York City manufacturer. Featuring a blunt toe box and stacked square heel, the two-toned shoe combines two popular 1940s styles—the slingback and the two-tone spectator. And a pop of blue is so much icing on the sole.

Vroom, Vroom

Left: Shoes. Katharina Denzinger for Herbert Levine Inc. (American, founded 1949). Leather, polyvinylchloride, polyurethane; 1965. Gift of Herbert Levine Inc., 1973 (1973.276.29a, b). Right: Race Car Shoe Ornament, $28

A colorful accent for any tree, this collectible version takes after a pair designed by Katharina Denziger for Herbert Levine. Made of clear, colored, and mirrored vinyl and trimmed with molded plastic to resemble a race car, the original shoes feature bright colors that bespeak the Pop Art and Space Age aesthetics of the 1960s.


Left: ShoesIsabel Canovas (French, born 1945). Silk, leather; spring/summer 1989. Gift of Isabel Canovas, 1989 (1989.208.1a, b). Right: Banana Peel Shoe Ornament, $28

A disposable skin has never looked so chic. Our bright yellow ornament replicates a pair of leather pumps produced in France for Isabel Canovas (born 1945), for her spring/summer 1989 collection. These surreal and fanciful “banana” shoes exemplify the designer’s witty yet luxurious jewelry and accessories.

Shop more ornaments and holiday gift ideas at store.metmuseum.org.


  1. Adorable! Is there anywhere I might find a list of all the shoe ornaments and the year they were issued? I’ve had a (very heavy) Mary Jane for years and can’t recall when I got it. Many thanks!

  2. I have the same question as my Metropolitan shoe collection goes back to 2011 but some have lost their identification. Is there a place to find that info? Thanks…

    1. Hi Ellen,

      Thanks for your note. Unfortunately, we don’t have a comprehensive list to share at this time, but it is something we hope to have in the future.

      Thanks again for your interest!

  3. Author icon Dennis Cunningham

    I have all of the shoe collection from about 2005 forward and have been able to put together back to 1998 from Ebay. I wonder if I have them all of am I still missing some. I also have pictures of most of the collection. please let me know if anyone has questions. ata2ed@comcast.net


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