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40,000 Shoes

Some designer shoes last for a season, others become part of fashion history. 

Visitors to Firenze will soon be able to visit the Museo Salvatore Ferragamo, newly renovated and reopening on December 1.  The collection includes not only enough of the master's shoe designs to satisfy even the most ardent footwear enthusiast, but also sketches, photographs, publications, and even patents.  As today's WWD reports:

"The [Ferragamo] family is very much aware of preserving the past," said Stefania Ricci, curator.  "Indeed, Fiamma set up the museum in 1995, but her father, Salvatore, was forward-looking in registering all of his trademarks, which was very unusual, and kept all his main models." 

Trademarks as a tool of historic preservation?  An unusual perspective, perhaps, but one well suited to a nation with a strong sense of its artistic heritage.  Speaking of which, the museum collection isn't just eye candy.  Ferragamo plans to offer a new, limited-edition collection of shoes and handbags based on its vintage designs -- called, most appropriately, the Heritage Collection. 

No word yet on whether the new editions will include Ferragamo's Invisible Sandal, originally created with a clear nylon thread upper and pictured below alongside Italian patent number 426001, October 17, 1947.  If necessity is the mother of invention, then even the local fishing tackle and bait shop can be a source of couture....