Like the men of this period, women’s shoes are hard to classify into a distinct look. The conservative woman clung to the thin-heeled stiletto, though in a shorter version than in the fifties. In 1965, trousers became acceptable wear for women in both formal and casual wear. Slip-on shoes with clunky heels followed.
Boots hit the fashion world in mid-decade when Andre Courreges introduced flat, shiny white thigh boots with square toes, made from injection-moulded plastic. These boots set a new example, and were soon produced for Yves Saint Laurent in crocodile.
With the appearance of the mini-skirt, kneelength boots appeared. As the sixties progressed, loose boots with a front seam gave way to boots that clung more tightly to the leg. Treated leathers and textiles began to take over from plain leather and plastic for these creations.
Go-go boots are one of the most remembered fashion trends of the 1960s. They came in a variety of heights from including ankle, thigh-high, and space age. They were a “must” in a young woman’s wardrobe.
In 1967, an ethnic look came in (brought on, no doubt, by hippie trend setting). Strappy African and oriental sandals were worn with flowing robes, afghan coats, and cheesecloth skirts and blouses. Pumps were abandoned in favour of more solid shoes, with broad square heels. By the end of the decade, soles had thickened, paving the way for the platform sole. In 1968, the new wave platforms reached London’s trend setting boutiques, and quickly became the height of fashion.