High Heels Take Center Stage at the Noel Shoe Museum Gala

The Noel Shoe Museum

Shoe Aficionados Unite at the Noel Shoe Museum’s Glittering Annual Gala.Manhattan was simply aglow on Thursday evening as the fashion elite gathered to celebrate footwear at the 2nd annual gala for the Noel Shoe Museum. Hosted by founder Vanessa Noel at the lavish Plaza Hotel, the event toasted the captivating history and cultural impact of shoes through words, wardrobe, and whimsy.

“In every journey, there’s a common thread that binds us all: the shoes we wear,” Fern Mallis remarked in her opening speech. Mallis even incorporated some quotations from icons of footwear, including this one from Giuseppe Zanotti: “Never underestimate the power of a shoe.

Cocktails and camaraderie filled the grand ballroom as heels of every height and hue could be spotted mingling, sipping champagne, and posing for photographers. Taking the idea of “living art” to a new level, painted performers mimicked high heel silhouettes in striking stationary poses. This novel “living shoe” concept was conceived by acclaimed body art painter Johannes Stoetter.

As the fashion luminaries were seated for dinner, the main stage lit up with a preview of soon-to-be archived shoes from the museum’s permanent collection. On display were samples of legendary footwear such as ruby red Manolo Blahnik sandals, exclusive Harlem Globetrotters sneakers, and metallic gold Versace platform sneakers contributed by gala partner Wegmans.

In an unexpected appearance, Mayor Eric Adams’ brother Bernard presented a special donation to the museum – a worn pair of the mayor’s leather brogues. “They’re not sexy, but I can tell you one thing: these shoes have a lot of mileage because the mayor works hard,” Bernard remarked. “If you know anything about the mayor, you know he’s up early and goes to bed real late. He’s out working overtime.”

The Noel Shoe Museum

Sweet indulgences and games capped off the evening’s festivities. Guests nibbled on artful desserts and played spirited rounds of bingo. Shoe maven Robert Verdi emceed the games, rewarding winners with luxury skin care products. The revelry continued late into the night at an afterparty held in the swanky OhLaLa lounge inside restaurateur Omar Hernandez’s Upper East Side hot spot, La Goulue.

By showcasing shoes spanning centuries and cultures, the Noel Shoe Museum highlights how footwear has stepped through history and impacted societies across the globe. The museum’s growing archives contain everything from 17th century buckle shoes to the hottest sneaker drops, all preserved to educate and inspire. Thursday’s glamorous gala celebrated shoes’ sense of imagination, individuality, and inclusion through the ages.

Mary Janika
Mary Janikahttps://heels.co.in
Mary Janika is the rising star in the world of fashion blogging. As a self-proclaimed 'shoe-aholic', Mary launched the blog 'Shoe Queen' to share her love of all things fashion footwear. Based in New York City, the epicenter of the fashion world, Mary constantly has her finger on the pulse when it comes to the latest and greatest shoe trends. From thigh-high boots to sky-high stilettos, Mary provides glimpses into her enviable personal shoe collection and serves up advice on how to style shoes for any occasion. With her down-to-earth attitude and humor-filled posts, Mary has cultivated an enthusiastic following of fellow shoe lovers. When she's not blogging, you'll find Mary thrifting vintage footwear, chatting up shoe designers about their newest collections, and of course, expanding her already-impressive lineup of heels and flats. For top-notch tips from a true shoe queen, look no further than Mary Janika and the Shoe Queen blog.

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