Shoe fetishism in popular culture

Shoe fetishismIn the 19th century, Central European students drank wine or Champagne from their lady’s shoe or bootlet as a sign of devotion. The custom is noted in the 1882 opera, Der Bettelstudent, where Symon drinks Champagne from Laura’s shoe at their wedding. In commemoration of this romantic tradition, the French shoe manufacturer Louboutin issued in 2009, a glass shaped like a woman’s shoe, which was reviewed critically by the German daily, Die Welt.

The Sex and the City episode, “La Douleur Exquise!”, featured a shoe salesman with a shoe and foot fetish, who allowed Charlotte York to have expensive shoes for free, simply for allowing him to assist her in trying on various pairs of open shoes whilst he openly complimented her on the state of her feet and offered reflexology. The relationship came to an end when Charlotte figured out she had been getting discounts because she was letting him hold her feet, and was further discomforted by the salesman obviously climaxing while assisting her with the sixth pair of the day.

The movie There’s Something About Mary featured a former boyfriend of Mary, Dom “Woogie” Wooganowski, played by Chris Elliott, with a shoe fetish. He tried to steal her shoes.

In the animated comedy show Family Guy the character Glenn Quagmire has a foot and shoe fetish, among other fetishes.

In the 1993 Spanish movie, The Bilingual Lover written and directed by Vicente Aranda and adapted from a novel by Juan Marsé, shoe fetishism pervades the whole story.

In the 1995 movie, While You Were Sleeping starring Sandra Bullock, the main character’s landlord played by Michael Rispoli has a shoe fetish.

In the 2000 Japanese television series, Bus Stop the main character, Musashi, has a strong interest in high heels, and at one point repairs a broken high heel for the woman he is pursuing.

Prevalence of shoe fetishism

Shoe fetishismIn order to determine the relative prevalences of different types of fetishes, scientists obtained a sample of at least 5000 individuals worldwide from 381 Internet discussion groups. The relative prevalences were estimated based on (a) the number of groups devoted to a particular fetish, (b) the number of individuals participating in the groups and (c) the number of messages exchanged. Using these measures, feet and shoes were found to be the most common target of preferences. This is consistent with an analysis of millions of search queries by users from the USA that were accidentally released during the AOL search data scandal. Sixty-four (64) percent of the sampled population that had a preference for an object associated with the body had a preference for shoes, boots, and other footwear.

Shoe fetishism

Shoe fetishismShoe fetishism is the attribution of attractive sexual qualities to shoes or other footwear as a matter of sexual preference, or an alternative or complement to a relationship with a partner. It has also been known as retifism, after the French novelist Nicolas-Edme Rétif (October 23, 1734–February 2, 1806), also known as Rétif de la Bretonne. Individuals with shoe fetishism can be erotically interested in women’s shoes. Although shoes may appear to carry sexual connotations in mainstream culture (for example, women’s shoes are commonly sold as being “sexy”) this opinion refers to an ethnographic or cultural context, and is likely not intended to be taken literally. Another fetishism, which sometimes is seen as related to shoe fetishism, is boot fetishism.

Elmer Batters: legend

Elmer Batters“Sorry for bringing this subject up if it has already been discussed to death, but I presume that most, if not all, contributors to this forum are familiar with the work of Elmer Batters. IMHO his photography is required reading for anyone with any pretensions to being a stocking fan, and especially fans of fully fashioned nylons.

“I must admit, that my mind was well and truly boggled when I saw the first Taschen book ‘From the Tip of the Toes to the Top of the Hose’ back in 1996. I had a day off work and wandered into my local branch of Dillons, saw a hardcover book with an attractive lady in FFs and had a look inside. It only took a moment for me to decide to buy it, and I am not one for impulse purchases, normally.

“The same goes for volume two, which is a far bigger and better (not to mention more expensive) work, ‘Legs That Dance to Elmer’s Tune’, complete with velour jacket and encased with a tan-colour stocking!

“In that book they mention the release of a pair of limited-edition monographs featuring further Batters photography. But I have yet to see any sign of it. Does anyone here know whether it has been published (it was scheduled for 1998, I think)? One volume was to feature early black and white photos and the second, the later colour work.”

“The only problem I have with Elmer Batters is his endless fixation with nyloned, and indeed bare, feet (yes I know he was a foot fetishist – I like nyloned feet as much as anyone but not to the point of obsession, which it clearly was with Batters). But this is more than made up for by the rest of his work, which I think is technically superb.

“I don’t think that anyone else who was taking photos for the foot and leg/stocking fetish market in the ’50s to ’80s can touch him for the care and attention he took with the composition and lighting. He photographed some extremely beautiful women in very provocative poses, and they didn’t all conform to the 21st century ‘ideal’ woman ie painfully thin. A lot of his models were really quite plump, which is no bad thing.”

“Elmer is to stocking, leg and foot loving folks as Elvis is to rock and roll. He’s the man! What a gift he had and he passed it along to us. Now we who love and enjoy what he loved and enjoyed can pass it on to the next group who will love and enjoy. His art and affection are timeless!”

“I am a 46/f who ‘discovered’ some Elmer Batters mags among my husband’s personal effects about 20 years ago. (I wasn’t spying, just cleaning.) I found them very arousing and they actually turned our sex life around as I began to emulate the wonderful things the girls wore. Yes, I know Batters often had girls without shoes, but if you recall he almost always had them standing up on their tippy toes, creating almost the same effect as heels.

“His models often had substantial thighs (an advantage for me!) and often the reinforced top of the stockings created a little ‘bulge’ just above that my hubby loved to kiss!”

“I first discovered him – and the book – also in 96, when I caught my friend leafing through it in an out-of-town bookstore. I couldn’t believe it. Here was someone who had the audacity to snap pics of women’s nyloned feet, and wasn’t embarrassed to make a photo career out of it. I never knew such an art existed. How naive I was. When I got home I decided I had to have this book, so called the bookstore and ordered it over phone. I was pretty embarrassed. But the ever-so-cool clerk simply remarked ‘Elmer Batters’ as if I was ordering some book in the art avant garde. In the short ensuing years I have discovered other variants of this kind of photography to my heart’s content. As a matter of fact, I never realised many more people than myself had this same kind of fetish, and was overjoyed to discover – alas god bless the web – there are many, many more. But please don’t knock those nyloned feet images. They’re heaven sent, we nyloned feet fetishists know for sure. Thanks for mention of the second volume. Encased in a nylon – how sweet!”