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Arsho Baghsarian shoe sketches, 1963-2008

Donated in March 2009 and currently housed in 9 boxes and 163 folders, the volume of Arsho Baghsarian shoe design sketch series is approximately 14 cubic feet (approximately 24000 sketches), which covers the complete output of Arsho Baghsarian from 1963 to 2008.
The series starts with a red pump sketch for Christian Dior dated back to 1963. This sketch is also the only Dior shoe sketch in this collection. Most original sketches are from 1960s to 1990s, which involve brands such as I.Miller, Andrew Geller, Shoebiz, and Arsho for Shoebiz. The original sketches were done in pencil, ink and gouache. The sketches for Stuart Weitzman (including Stuart Weitzman, Stuart, Arsho for Stuart Weitzman) account for approximately two-thirds of this series. Since the original sketches especially those in Arsho’s late career remain in the factory, the sketches of this part in the collection are photocopies. Arsho devotes her entire career and talents to shoe designs. She has designed the full spectrum of women’s footwear: from sandals to boots and from wedding slippers to sports shoes.
The range of materials makes the series an important tool for conservation, while the collection of design sketches, actual shoe prototypes and marketing, even those in publications that have been greatly transformed or no longer exist, give students a sense of art marketing and fashion history.

Baghsarian, Arsho

Christian Dior, 1963

This is the smallest sub-series in the collection, which contains one colorful original sketch. The shoe is predominantly bright red canvas heel with a gold buckle as decoration.

Baghsarian, Arsho

I. Miller, 1963-1969

The I.Miller sub-series contains a total of 691 sketches in 4folders, all of which are original color sketches. The specific year information is not available in this subseries, but the year range can be deduced from Arsho Baghsarian’s biography history (she designed for I.Miller from 1963 to 1968). The shoe types in this subseries include sandals, flats, pumps, thongs, and very few boots. Based on the dominant shoe forms contained in this subseries, these sketches should belong to spring and summer seasons.
One of the notable characteristic of this subseries is the wide adoption of bulky heels. The element is merged into the design of pumps, pump sandals and flats, which gives this subseries a character of casualness. Additionally, the integration of feminine elements, such as flower and bow ornaments, endues a mixed quality into this subseries.

Baghsarian, Arsho

Shoestring, 1979-1982

The Shoestrings sub-series contains a total of 741 sketches in 7 folders. The folder with an estimated year (1980’s) contains 82 original sketches, half of which are designs for handbags and the rest are sketches for platform sandals and pumps. The handbags in this sub-series feature accessory usage bags such as evening bags and clutches. The rest of the original sketches are mainly the design of platform sandals and pumps. Baghsarian’s design for shoes comprise all types of women shoes for every occasion , which include sandals, flats, sneakers, boots, pumps and some accessories.
The shoes of Shoestring are appropriate for women of all ages, the material of the shoes, the delicate sequins detail, fragile ribbon ankle straps, friable rope wedge soles and porous canvas and mesh uppers, and their warm color palette of vibrant red, orange, green, canary yellow, hot pinks, bright whites and metallic suggest that they are intended for a relatively young consumer group. Baghsarian’s talent of utilizing various materials into shoe designing is exemplified in this sub-series again. The materials used in this sub-series include but not limited to calf leather, snake skin leather, suede, canvas, denim, metallic ornaments. Also, her sense of fashion and feminine characteristic create a distinct product line.

Baghsarian, Arsho

Arsho for Stuart, 1987-1995

The Arsho for Stuart sub-series contains a total of 1975 sketches in 22 folders. Compare to other sub-series in the series, Arsho for Stuart houses the most colorful sketches, whose amount is approximately 1000 in total.
As a subordinate product line in Stuart Weitzman, Arsho for Stuart aimed to target a younger and more diverse consumer group. A variety of feminine characteristics are employed in this sub-series. Ornaments such as lace decorations and ribbon bows are widely used. The functionality valued by Arsho is also represented in this sub-series. The design of high-heel shoes accounts for a very small portion in the sub-series. The feminine quality is realized by the combination of delicate details and textiles.

Baghsarian, Arsho

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