Wednesday 2 September / 2.15pm–3.30pm
Put on your favourite pair of Rayne shoes and join Michael Pick, the author of RAYNE Shoes for Stars for an illustrated talk on the history of the company.
Learn why Rayne is the name synonymous with the best in British 20th-century shoe design and be dazzled by examples of footwear created for the company’s sophisticated clientele. The business began in the late 19th-century as a theatrical costumier and soon added shoes to its products, with a factory at Waterloo in South London near the current Fashion and Textile Museum. Early clients included the Ballet Russes, Nijinsky and Pavlova together with every major stage star. After 1920 with the opening of a Bond Street shop, shoes were also made for the fashionable commercial market and in the 1930s Queen Mary granted Rayne a Royal Warrant. In 1938 a large new factory was opened at King’s Cross and by 1952 the company also had a Royal Warrant from Queen Elizabeth, consort of George VI. Rayne made the wedding shoes of Princess Elizabeth in 1947 and was awarded her Royal Warrant in 1957. From the 1930s Rayne had a strong American presence at Bergdorf Goodman, NYC, amongst other locations.
Edward Rayne became head of the business in 1950 and became a fashion celebrity in his own right. In 1958 Oliver Messel re-designed the famous Bond Street shop, which attracted glamorous stars of stage and screen, such as Elizabeth Taylor, Vivien Leigh and Marlene Dietrich as well as society ladies. Designers for Rayne included Perugia, Roger Vivier, Mary Quant, Jean Muir, and the ‘Fashion Knights’ Sir Norman Hartnell, and Sir Hardy Amies. In the 1970s, Bill Gibb designed collections for Rayne, and they supplied the shoes for several leading French couturiers houses such as Lanvin and Nina Ricci. In the 1980s Bruce Oldfield designed collections for them.
This illustrated talk is a fantastic opportunity to see the shoes in detail and discuss Rayne’s history with the world’s leading authority on the company. Michael Pick is guest curator of RAYNE Shoes for Stars and the author of the accompanying book. His other books include Hardy Amies and Be Dazzled: Norman Hartnell, Sixty Years of Glamour and Fashion.
Price: £15 includes tea or coffee and entry to the current exhibition and displays.
The event starts at 2.15pm with tea or coffee in the Fashion Studio; the talk follows at 2.30pm and lasts for approximately one hour including an opportunity to ask questions at the end. The talk is followed by a book signing. ‘RAYNE Shoes for Stars’ is available for purchase from the Fashion and Textile Museum exhibition shop.Frequently Asked Questions