While most high heels have small, thin and tall heels, wedge heels by definition have heels in the shape of a wedge. While some may consider these heels to be a little on the bulky side, they are in fact some of the more fashionable choices of footwear available today. Initially, they came into fashion when shoes similar to the modern design were made in the 1930s. The genius behind this epic design would be Salvatore Ferragamo in Florence, one of the fashion capitals of the world. Due to leather and rubber shortage at the time, the first wedge heels were made using cork and wood.
As a result, the one of the first orthopedic heels available were brought into existence. This is because the shoes not only did not concentrate all the stress on one part of the wearer’s feet but they are also much lighter due to the material used. Another great perk that came with this unconventional use of these materials were that the heels produced were significantly more durable and robust. They first became popular during the Second World War when leather and rubber materials were essential in the production of military goods.
As such, those that used cork and wood as materials at the time were one of the few available choices of fashionable shoe design at the time. As it provided both height and a significant improvement in the sense of comfort in comparison to other high heels such as stilettos, they quickly became the latest vogue at the time. Like everything in the fashion industry however, they did lose popularity over the years. However, in the 1970s, wedge heels resurfaced with a wider variety of designs. This period saw to the birth of the disco culture that included outrageous and loud fashion styles where wedge platforms became popular amongst both men and women.
One name particularly responsible in the revival of the design at the time was Yves Saint Laurent who produced a number of them in his collection. The heels resurfaced yet again later in the 1990s. The cause of this revival was never really confirmed though one of the more famous ones was that the design became hugely popular amongst celebrities at the time such as the popular band, “The Spice Girls”. The design’s most recent comeback was in the summer of 2006 where certain designers like the French, Thierry de Havvilaud. As such, today’s designs include everything from straps to secure the wedges to flip-flop designs consisting of smaller wedge heels.