We’re lucky that there are so many attractions and shops near our soon-to-be 1 Yorkville. We’re regulars at the Royal Ontario Museum, especially for Friday Night Live, and we routinely dine at the many fabulous cafes in the area.
Founded in 1995, the Bata Shoe Museum is another one of our favourite spots in the area, and it’s perfect for Manolo Blahnik-lovers or sneaker aficionados! We headed over on a quiet Thursday afternoon with plans to spend endless hours looking at every type of shoe imaginable.
We started on the bottom of the museum where they have the All About Shoes: Footwear through the Ages exhibition. Beautifully set up, we saw shoes from all around the world and from different eras. It was interesting to see what shoes people used to wear, why they wore them and how they’ve evolved.
This shoe is from early 20th century China, and created for women with bound feet. According to the Museum, the shape accommodated the bound feet, whereas the leather and Western “style” signified that she was “part of the changing times”.
We were most interested in seeing the shoes of famous celebrities and were in utter awe of basketball all-star Shaquille O’Neal’s monster-sized shoe. We’re not exaggerating – he wears a US size 23! James Bond fans would’ve been impressed with Pierce Brosnan’s shoes from when he played the secret agent.
We also spent a lot of time checking out the Beauty, Identity, Pride: Native North American Footwear exhibit.
We ended our tour at the busiest exhibit – The Rise of Sneaker Culture! Here we saw shoes designed by the biggest brands from Nike to Christian Louboutin. Everyone owns at least one pair of sneakers (some of us own far too many to count) so this exhibit is a must-visit.
One of Christian Louboutin’s first shoes for men. Did you know that he launched his first men’s collection in 2011 as a response to more men becoming more serious about their shoes. We’d definitely rock these, would you?
Definitely slot in a trip to the Bata Shoe Museum in your schedule – with over 13,000 artefacts spanning 4,500 years of history, you’ll definitely be as impressed as we were!