Resurrecting A McQueen Nude Leather Strap Heel

From the Alexander McQueen A/W ’04 collection ‘Pantheon As Lucem’ these nude leather strap heels came to us via Mcqueen_Vault. The collection saw an exploration of ancient aliens grounded in folk detailing with futuristic purity, which sees McQueen pulling from the movies “2001 A Space Odyssey” and “Close Encounters of the Third Kind.” It poses questions of modernity while firmly anchoring itself in soulful techniques like carved wooden design motifs, draped liquid jersey, and romantic embroidery. 

When we first saw these shoes, there was heavy scuffing on the heel area. The leather on the heel stem was distorted and the back seam was displaced off centre with deep scuffs. The Mary Jane strap had collapsed and the soles and heel tips were worn out.

Before restoration
Scuffed toes
Heel stem seam distorted

To begin the restoration work, our shoe expert sanded off the soles to clear the soiling and marks of wear. When flat, the sole surface was then reworked using our techniques to smooth, fill and conceal the marks. The sole was then painted to the original colour which was hand mixed and matched in our atelier.

Mid sole restoration
Sanding the sole
Painting the sole

In order to restore the weakened Mary Jane bars across the foot, they were carefully opened up so moulded wire could be inserted that will keep the shape in its originally intended position.

Colour restoring the leather upper

In order to restore the distorted seams, our artisan opened up the leather on the heel stems to reposition them into the original place. The scuffs were then restored using our bespoke techniques and the colour was restored. To do this, the colour is hand mixed ensuring the perfect colour match and paint is applied in light layers to conceal the signs of general wear and tear. The final touch saw our atelier team re-sculpt the heel tips and the shoes were ready to go back to the archive.