Terry De Havilland born in London’s East End just before WW2 broke out, became the capital’s (and then the world’s) most colourful cobbler with his stunning ‘look at me’ shoes in the 1960s’ . His outrageous platform shoes. away ahead of its time ,attracted an enormous band of followers from celebrities like Marianne Faithfull, Led Zeppelin, Bianca Jagger and David Bowie etc to working girls who made London the epicentre of the ‘swinging sixties’. Kate Moss has never stopped wearing them.
De Havilland died yesterday aged 81 years and his legacy is his enormous influence that he had on shoes, with so many of his own styles being spot-on-today some 50 years after he had designed them.
Sadly his business ventures suffered sometimes in a very fickle fashion industry but much worse than that in the past two decades was the constant unlawful copying of some of his classic designs. So bad that at one stage the BBC make a documentary “Trouble At Top‘ of how none other than PRADA had illegally knocked off his shoes too. (There is a clip of part one below)
De Havilland was also worshipped and his creations celebrated by insider fashionistas but he deserves to be recognised beyond that for making our feet feel so happy as much as he did.