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Antique Chinese Silk Shoes - Rare Hand Embroidered for Baby Girl: This tiny pair of Chinese girl's shoes was created (according to the lady from whom I bought them), at the end of the 19th century or very early 20th century for a girl baby, to mimic those which would later follow the torturous practice of foot binding. Measuring just shy of 4" (10 cm ) in length and 1 1/2 " 3.5 cm wide, they are silk and hand made in total, from the hand embroidery on the upper, to the couching on the multi layered cotton sole, to the stitching of the actual shoe construction and the application of the ribbon. They were purchased in an antique shop in Yangshuo, China and may or may not have been worn. It seems hard to believe that even a new born's feet would fit and perhaps the old lady was embellishing her story for the sale.

They are in excellent condition, given their age, and show no evidence of loose threads or ripped seams. They are slightly soiled but this only adds to their authenticity.

The practice of foot binding started in China around the 13th century and continued until it was banned in 1911. The mother of the lady who sold them to me, had bound feet. Foot binding was done between the ages of 4 and 7. If you are interested in seeing how the broken feet looked, google images and you will be amazed.

These are a rare collector's find and they can be yours.

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Antique Chinese Silk Shoes - Rare Hand Embroidered for Foot Binding

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  • Vintage item from the 1800s
  • Materials: silk, cotton, starch
  • Ships worldwide from Montreal, Canada
  • Feedback: 303 reviews
  • Favorited by: 244 people