Shoe prototype

Designer Steven Arpad French

Not on view

This object comes from a group of over seventy-five shoe prototypes designed in Paris in 1939 by Steven Arpad. Aside from the lines of leather accessories and jewelry he produced under his own name in the 1940s, Arpad seems to have worked mostly anonymously. The prototypes are accompanied by an extensive archive of original sketches which has made it possible to identify uncredited shoe designs for Balenciaga and Delman as Arpad's work. Containing some of the most creative, unique, and unusual examples of footwear design in the collection, the museum's holdings appear to be the only documented body of the work of this extraordinary designer.
This sporty tie shoe features and particularly attractive and inventive treatment of the eyelets, complimenting the angular lines of the toe and throat in a traffic-signal color scheme that the designer has extracted on the heel. The elegant line of the toe and top edge is emphasized with piping which complements the shoe's self tie. While the sketches in the Arpad archive frequently feature a heel which continues the design theme of the upper, this is one of the few models to actually include one.

Shoe prototype, Steven Arpad (French, 1904–1999), leather, wood, French

Due to rights restrictions, this image cannot be enlarged, viewed at full screen, or downloaded.

Open Access

As part of the Met's Open Access policy, you can freely copy, modify and distribute this image, even for commercial purposes.


Public domain data for this object can also be accessed using the Met's Open Access API.