This 1930s-1940s right foot, low heeled, female buckled dress shoe of pink and brown leather was one of Stanio Fancoff's basket shoe samples. This shoe, along with six others, were shown to prospective purchasers as examples of Stanio's shoewares which were made from his shoemaking business in Fitzroy by himself and family.

Stanio Ivanoff Fancoff was born in 1908 in Bojentsi, a small village in Bulgaria. At age 11, Stanio left home to learn the shoemaking trade. In 1929, he immigrated to Melbourne, settled in Fitzroy and began to work for the V.G. Zemancheff & Sons basket shoe factory in South Melbourne. In1936, he married Dorotea Georgi Touzou who had recently arrived in Australia. Around this time, Stanio set up his own shoemaking business from home, with Georgi, her cousin and sister weaving the shoes which he then assembled. Select shoe samples were then taken to Sydney and Tasmania for sale. In 1942, Georgi and Stanio moved to Broken Hill for Georgi's health; there daughter Nancy was born and Stanio set up a shoe shop/factory. In 1945, Georgi died and by 1950 Stanio and Nancy had moved to Adelaide where he again opened a shoemaking business and shop. He passed away in 1978, having been in the shoemaking business for 59 years. This collection documents his migration and working life experiences.

Physical Description

Right foot, low heeled, female dress shoe of pink and brown leather basketweave. Enclosed shoe, slightly rounded shape toe with ornate buckle fastener on right side. Lower shoe section and central section from base to vamp are woven in a checkered pattern, top portion appears as two rows of vertical stripes, top line and cross strap are in an unwoven brown leather. Attached to the shoe throat is a pink coloured fan shaped leather embellishment. Neutral coloured leather sole inscribed and stamped on base, with heel of 4cm height and depth, three tacks connect heel to sole. Leather wraps around heel, joining at heel breast centre. Neutral coloured quartier with leather inner sole.


This collection is significant in documenting a small migrant business as well as the fashion of a particular period. It is well provenanced and charts the application of trade skills in a new country. It also illustrates the stages of hand shoe manufacture from the 1930s, demonstrating the enduring nature of the tools and patterns that were used.

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