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Title:
HIGH HEEL SHOE SOLE CONSTRUCTION
Document Type and Number:
WIPO Patent Application WO/2020/165411
Kind Code:
A1
Abstract:
A sole construction (10) for use in a high heel shoe (60) comprises at least a first skeleton sole (11) formed from a composite material such as a carbon fibre material. The skeleton sole (11) has lasting allowances (15) defined around the perimeter thereof and adapted to receive the edges of a shoe upper (61) when incorporated in a high heel shoe (60). The skeleton sole (11) is further shaped so as to define one or more recesses (16) generally centrally therein. When incorporated into a high heel shoe (60), the enhanced strength, rigidity and flexibility of the sole construction (10) allow for the use of a range of interchangeable heel constructions (30, 40, 50) having different heel heights.

Inventors:
OLSSON JELENA (RS)
Application Number:
EP2020/053896
Publication Date:
August 20, 2020
Filing Date:
February 14, 2020
Export Citation:
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Assignee:
GLASS SLIPPER DOO (RS)
International Classes:
A43B9/14; A43B3/12; A43B3/24; A43B13/02; A43B13/12; A43B13/36; A43B21/38; A43B21/42
Foreign References:
US20180338582A12018-11-29
US9510647B12016-12-06
EP2883470A12015-06-17
EP3122199A12017-02-01
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
SANDERSONS (GB)
Download PDF:
Claims:
Claims

1. A sole construction for a high heel shoe, comprising at least a first skeleton sole formed from a composite material and having lasting allowances defined around the perimeter thereof and adapted to receive the edges of a shoe upper, and wherein said skeleton sole is further shaped so as to define one or more recesses generally centrally therein.

2. A sole construction as claimed in claim 1 , further comprising a second like skeleton sole arranged to underlie said first skeleton sole.

3. A sole construction as claimed in claim 2, wherein said second skeleton sole has a shape complementary to that of the first skeleton sole, and is adapted to engage therewith.

4. A sole construction as claimed in claim 2 or claim 3, wherein said first skeleton sole constitutes an insole and said second skeleton sole constitutes a midsole.

5. A sole construction as claimed in any of the preceding claims, wherein said first skeleton sole comprises a substantially flat forefoot area at a first end thereof, a raised heel area at a second end thereof, and an arch area extending therebetween and rising from said forefoot area to said heel area.

6. A sole construction as claimed in claim 5 when dependent upon any of claims 2 to 4, wherein said second skeleton sole comprises at least a heel area and optionally an arch area corresponding respectively to the heel area and arch area of the first skeleton sole.

7. A sole construction as claimed in claim 5 or claim 6, wherein said recesses are formed in at least said arch area, and extend generally longitudinally thereof.

8. A sole construction as claimed in any of the preceding claims, wherein said composite material is or includes a carbon fibre material.

9. A sole construction as claimed in any of the preceding claims, wherein the or at least one skeleton sole is further shaped so as to define one or more strengthening ribs, generally centrally therein.

10. A sole construction as claimed in claim 9, wherein said ribs are formed in at least said arch area, and extend generally longitudinally thereof.

11. A sole construction as claimed in claim 9 or claim 10, wherein the height of the one or more ribs is substantially equal to the depth of the one or more recesses.

12. A sole construction as claimed in any of the preceding claims, wherein the or each skeleton sole is formed from one or more layers of the composite material.

13. A sole construction as claimed in claim 12 when dependent upon claim 5, wherein the forefoot area is formed from fewer layers of the composite material than is the arch area.

14. A sole construction as claimed in any of the preceding claims, further comprising a footbed arranged to overlie said at least one skeleton sole, said footbed being formed of a cushioning material.

15. A high heel shoe formed with a sole construction as claimed in any of the preceding claims.

16. A high heel shoe as claimed in claim 15, wherein said shoe does not comprise a metal shank.

17. A high heel shoe as claimed in claim 15 or claim 16, comprising a sole construction as claimed in any of claims 1 to 14, an upper, an outsole, and a heel construction.

18. A high heel shoe as claimed in claim 17, wherein the height of the lasting allowance of the sole construction is substantially equal to the thickness of the upper.

19. A high heel shoe as claimed in claim 17 or claim 18, wherein the heel construction is removeable.

20. A high heel shoe as claimed in claim 19, wherein the heel construction is interchangeable with one or more alternative heel constructions.

21. A high heel shoe as claimed in claim 20, wherein said alternative heel constructions comprise a range of heel constructions of differing height.

22. A high heel shoe as claimed in any of claims 17 to 21 , wherein the outsole has a shape complementary to that of the first skeleton sole, and is adapted to engage therewith.

Description:
High Heel Shoe Sole Construction

This invention relates to a sole construction for a high heel shoe, and to a high heel shoe formed with such a sole construction. In particular, this invention relates to a sole construction formed of a composite material to provide enhanced strength, but with reduced sole construction thickness.

In this specification, the term“high heel shoe” is intended to refer to any kind of elevated heel arrangement having heel heights of more than 25 mm, though it is generally envisaged that preferred embodiments of high heel shoes according to the invention will have heel heights in the range of from 60 mm to 100 mm.

Conventional high heel shoes are constructed with a sole construction comprising a structural sole component having a flat forefoot area, a raised heel area, and an arch area rising from the forefoot area to the heel area. The shoe upper is generally attached (lasted) to the sole component, and an outsole is attached to the underside of the sole component. A heel construction is affixed to the heel area, generally by means of a central screw and additional side screws. It is common for a metal shank to be incorporated into the sole construction to impart sufficient strength and rigidity to the shoe to be able to bear the weight of the wearer. However, this effectively increases the thickness of the sole construction and so reduces the amount of space available for cushioning.

It is a principal aim of this invention to provide a sole construction for a high heel shoe having enhanced strength, which obviates the need for a metal shank to be included, and thus enables the thickness of the sole construction to be reduced. The space made available by the reduced sole construction thickness can then be used to provide increased cushioning, and thus enhanced comfort. A further aim of the present invention is to provide a sole construction with enhanced properties of rigidity and flexibility, tailored to different areas of the sole construction. These properties, together with the enhanced strength, enable the use of a single sole construction with a range of different heel heights. According to a first aspect of this invention, there is provided a sole construction for a high heel shoe, comprising at least a first skeleton sole formed from a composite material and having lasting allowances defined around the perimeter thereof and adapted to receive the edges of a shoe upper, and wherein said skeleton sole is further shaped so as to define one or more recesses generally centrally therein. The composite material preferably is or includes a carbon fibre material.

The sole construction may comprise a second like skeleton sole arranged to underlie the first skeleton sole. The first skeleton sole thus constitutes an insole and the second skeleton sole constitutes a midsole. The second skeleton sole preferably has a shape complementary to that of the first skeleton sole, and is adapted to engage therewith.

The first skeleton sole preferably comprises a substantially flat forefoot area at a first end thereof, a raised heel area at a second end thereof, and an arch area extending therebetween and rising from the forefoot area to the heel area. The second skeleton sole preferably comprises at least a heel area corresponding to the heel area of the first skeleton sole. The second skeleton sole may preferably further comprise an arch area corresponding to the arch area of the first skeleton sole, and optionally a forefoot area corresponding to the forefoot area of the first skeleton sole. In embodiments where the second skeleton sole comprises a heel area only, or heel and arch areas only, the remainder of the midsole construction may be made up by conventional materials such as leather, thermoplastic polyurethane (TPU) or rubber.

The recesses are preferably formed in at least the arch area, and extend generally longitudinally along the first skeleton sole. The, or at least one, skeleton sole is preferably further shaped so as to define one or more strengthening ribs, generally centrally therein. As with the recesses, the ribs are preferably formed in at least the arch area, and extend generally longitudinally along the skeleton sole. The height of the ribs is preferably substantially equal to the depth of the one or more recesses.

The or each skeleton sole may be formed from one or more layers of the composite material. The number of layers of the composite material may vary along the length of the skeleton sole, so as to control the degree of rigidity or flexibility of the different areas of the skeleton sole. In particular, the forefoot area of the first skeleton sole may be formed from fewer layers of the composite material than the arch area, and the arch area may be formed from fewer layers of the composite material than the heel area. This enables the flexibility of the boundary between the forefoot area and the arch area to be controlled, whilst still maintaining the strength and rigidity of the arch area. This flexibility of the boundary is important to enable the sole construction of the present invention to be utilised with a range of different heel heights, since this requires the sole construction to flex so as to adopt a corresponding range of different angles between the forefoot area and the arch area.

The formation of the sole construction as hereinbefore described provides enhanced strength whilst also enabling the thickness of the sole construction to be reduced, compared to conventional sole constructions. This in turn frees up space within the shoe, allowing for additional cushioning to be included, and so also enhancing comfort for the wearer.

The sole construction thus preferably further comprises a footbed arranged to overlie said at least one skeleton sole, said footbed being formed of a cushioning material. In preferred embodiments, the footbed will overlie the first skeleton sole (insole) which in turn overlies the second skeleton sole (midsole).

According to a second aspect of the present invention, there is further provided a high heel shoe formed with a sole construction as hereinbefore described. The enhanced strength of the sole construction enables such a shoe to be constructed without the need for a metal shank to be included in the shoe construction, as is standard in conventional high heel shoe manufacture. The high heel shoe according to the second aspect of the present invention preferably comprises a sole construction as hereinbefore described, an upper, an outsole, and a heel construction. In such embodiments, the depth of the recesses of the sole construction is preferably substantially equal to the thickness of the upper.

In preferred embodiments of high heel shoe according to the second aspect of the present invention, the heel construction is removeable. The heel construction may preferably be interchangeable with one or more alternative heel constructions, comprising a range of heel constructions of differing height. For example, the sole construction may be utilised with a range of interchangeable heel constructions having heights of 60-70 mm, 80 mm, and 90-100 mm.

This interchangeable arrangement is enabled by the enhanced strength of the sole construction according to the first aspect of the present invention, together with the increased rigidity of the arch area and the increased flexibility of the forefoot area. By contrast, conventional sole constructions for high heel shoes generally lack the required combination of strength, rigidity and flexibility to withstand the different loads and stresses associated with the different angles at which the sole constructions will be disposed when combined with heel constructions of differing heights.

It should be appreciated that a single sole construction according to the first aspect of the present invention is capable of engaging with each of a range of heel constructions as described above interchangeably, without the need to change the configuration of the sole construction. As such, a high heel shoe according to the second aspect of the present invention may be supplied with a range of such interchangeable heel constructions, intended to be interchanged by the wearer when desired.

Alternatively, it is envisaged that the sole construction according to the first aspect of the present invention may be supplied to shoe manufacturers as a component part for incorporation into a high heel shoe according to the second aspect of the present invention. The manufacturer may thus utilise the same configuration of sole construction to form a range of high heel shoes of differing height.

The interchangeable attachment of the heel constructions with the sole construction may preferably be achieved by the provision of a heel pin secured to the first skeleton sole and protruding therefrom, and a corresponding recess formed in a heel insert provided in the heel construction, said recess being adapted to receive said heel pin in a removable engagement. Examples of suitable heel engagement mechanisms are described in the inventor’s EP 3,122,199.

The outsole is preferably formed with a shape complementary to that of the sole construction, and is adapted to engage therewith. That is to say, the outsole may be formed with ribs and recesses on its top surface complementary to the underside of the ribs and recesses presented on the lower surface of the sole construction.

In order that the present invention may be more clearly understood, preferred embodiments thereof will now be described in detail, though only by way of example, with reference to the accompanying drawings, in which:

Figure 1 shows a perspective view of a first embodiment of a sole construction according to a first aspect of the present invention;

Figure 2 shows an exploded perspective view of a second embodiment of a sole construction according to the first aspect of the present invention;

Figure 3 shows a perspective view of an alternative embodiment of midsole for use in a sole construction according to a first aspect of the present invention;

Figure 4 shows an exploded side view of a sole construction according to the first aspect of the present invention, in combination with a first height of heel construction, for use in a first embodiment of a high heel shoe according to a second aspect of the present invention; Figure 5 shows an exploded side view of a sole construction according to the first aspect of the present invention, in combination with a second height of heel construction, for use in a first embodiment of a high heel shoe according to the second aspect of the present invention;

Figure 6 shows an exploded side view of a sole construction according to the first aspect of the present invention, in combination with a third height of heel construction, for use in a first embodiment of a high heel shoe according to the second aspect of the present invention;

Figure 7 shows a side view of a sole construction according to the first aspect of the present invention, in combination with a heel construction for use in a second embodiment of high heel shoe according to the second aspect of the present invention;

Figure 8 shows a side view of a sole construction according to the first aspect of the present invention, in combination with a heel construction for use in a third embodiment of high heel shoe according to the second aspect of the present invention;Figure 9 shows a lateral cross-sectional view of the heel area of a high heel shoe according to the second aspect of the present invention;

Figure 10 shows a lateral cross-sectional view of the arch area of a high heel shoe according to the second aspect of the present invention;

Figure 1 1 shows a lateral cross-sectional view of the forefoot area of a high heel shoe according to the second aspect of the present invention;

Figure 12 shows a longitudinal cross-sectional view of a high heel shoe according to the second aspect of the present invention.

Figure 13 shows an exploded perspective view of an embodiment of high heel shoe according to the second aspect of the present invention ;

Figure 14 shows a lateral cross-sectional view of the heel area of a high heel shoe according to an embodiment of the second aspect of the present invention; Figure 15 shows a lateral cross-sectional view of the arch area of a high heel shoe according to an embodiment of the second aspect of the present invention; and

Figure 16 shows a lateral cross-sectional view of the forefoot area of a high heel shoe according to an embodiment of the second aspect of the present invention.

Referring first to Figure 1 , there is shown a first embodiment of a sole construction, generally indicated 10, according to a first aspect of the present invention, for use in a high heel shoe according to a second aspect of the present invention. The sole construction 10 comprises a first skeleton sole 1 1 , also referred to herein as an insole.

The insole 1 1 is formed from a layered composite material comprising carbon fibre, and presents a top surface 22 and a bottom surface 23. The insole comprises a generally flat forefoot area 12, a raised heel area 13, and an arch area 14 extending therebetween, and rising from the forefoot area 12 to the heel area 13. The insole 11 is provided around its perimeter with lasting allowances 15 adapted to receive the edges of a shoe upper (not shown in Figure 1 ) when the sole construction 10 is incorporated into a high heel shoe, as will be described in more detail below with reference to Figures 9 to 12.

The insole 11 is constructed so as to have a central recess 16 formed in the top surface 22 of the insole 11 , and ribs 17 upstanding from said surface 22. The embodiment of insole 11 shown in Figure 1 has a single recess 16 and pair of ribs 17 generally parallel thereto, though in other embodiments a variety of different arrangements of recesses 16 and ribs 17 may be used. The recesses and ribs serve to enhance the strength and rigidity of the insole 11 , particularly in the arch area 14 and heel area 13, meaning that it is not necessary to utilise a metal shank in the manufacture of the high heel shoe.

The heel area 13 is provided with a mounting point 18 for a heel pin (not shown in Figure 1 ), as will be described in more detail below with reference to Figures 4 to 6. The thickness of the insole 1 1 around the mounting point 18 is greater than that of the surrounding heel area 13, which is achieved by adding additional layers of the composite material. The mounting point 18 can also be used to affix a standard high heel construction, as will be described below with reference to Figures 9 and 12.

The degree of flexibility and rigidity of the insole 11 can be controlled by the layering of the composite carbon fibre material. In particular, it is desirable that the arch area 14 is formed from more layers of the composite carbon fibre material than is the forefoot area 12. A boundary area 19 is thus defined between the arch area 14 and the forefoot area 12, in which boundary area 19 the number of layers of material reduces and so the thickness of the insole 11 tapers towards the forefoot area 12. The strength and rigidity of the arch area 14 is thus maintained, whilst allowing the insole 11 to be flexible in the boundary area 19, which is important for utilising the sole construction 10 with a range of heel constructions (not shown in Figure 1 ) of differing heights, as will be described below in more detail with reference to Figures 4 to 6.

Referring now to Figure 2, there is shown a second embodiment of sole construction, generally indicated 20, according to the first aspect of the present invention, further comprising a second like skeleton sole 21 , also referred to herein as a midsole. The midsole 21 is of like formation to the insole 11 , being formed from layered carbon fibre composite material, presenting a top surface 22 and a bottom surface 23, and comprising a raised heel area 13, an arch area 14, lasting allowances 15, ribs 17, a heel pin mounting point 18, and a boundary area 19, all as hereinbefore described in relation to the insole 1 1. The particular example of the second skeleton sole 21 shown in Figure 2 lacks a forefoot area 12 and recesses 16 in its top surface 22, though it should be understood that these features may be present in other embodiments of the second skeleton sole 21 . The midsole 21 is adapted to underlie the insole 11 and engage therewith. To that end, although not visible in Figure 2, the bottom surface 23 of the insole 11 follows the profile of the top surface 22, such that recesses (not visible in Figure 2) are effectively formed in the bottom surface 23 of the insole 1 1 , corresponding to the location of the ribs 17 in the top surface 22 thereof. The ribs

17 on the top surface 22 of the midsole 21 thus engage with the recesses in the bottom surface of the insole 1 1 when the insole 11 overlies the midsole 21. When mated in this arrangement, the midsole 21 and insole 1 1 effectively act as single sole construction component 20.

Referring now to Figure 3, there is shown an alternative embodiment of midsole 24 for use in the sole construction 20 of Figure 2. In this embodiment, the carbon fibre composite second skeleton sole 21 comprises a heel area 13 only. The remainder of the midsole 24 is thus made up by conventional materials such as leather, thermoplastic polyurethane (TPU) or rubber.

Referring now to Figures 4 to 6, there is shown a sole construction 20 according to the first aspect of the present invention, as described above with reference to Figure 2, in combination with a range of heel constructions 30, 40, 50, of differing heights, for use in a first embodiment of high heel shoe according to a second aspect of the present invention. Note that, in the example of sole construction 20 shown in Figures 4 to 6, the midsole 21 features a forefoot area 12, unlike the example shown in Figure 2.

A heel pin 31 , formed of titanium, stainless steel, a hardened steel alloy, or other high tensile strength material is secured to the heel pin mounting point

18 on the sole construction 20 by means of a low profile screw (not shown in Figures 4 to 6). The heel pin 31 extends from a nut 32, which is of complementary shape to the heel pin mounting point 18, to a tip 33 at the lower end thereof. The heel pin 31 is further provided with a spring-loaded plunger element 34, the operation of which is described in the inventor’s EP 3,122,199. The heel pin 31 as hereinbefore described is intended to be permanently secured to the sole construction 20. A range of heel constructions 30, 40, 50 of differing height may then be removably and interchangeably engaged with the heel pin 31.

Referring first to Figure 4, there is shown the engagement of the sole construction 20 with a first heel construction, generally indicated 30, corresponding to a heel height of 60-70 mm. The heel construction 30 comprises a heel profile 35, which constitutes the externally visible part of the heel construction 30. The top end of the heel profile 35 houses a heel insert 36, whilst a rod 37 extends through the main body of the heel profile 35 and retains in place a cap 38 having an upstanding peg (not shown) which engages with a complementary hole (not shown) in the bottom of the rod 37.

The heel pin 31 engages with the heel insert 36 in an interference fit; the plunger 34 engages with a recess (not shown in Figure 4) in the heel insert 36 for added security. The heel pin tip 33 also engages in an interference fit with a machined hole (not shown in Figure 4) in the top of the rod 37. The rod 37 is key to achieving the required structural strength. Load during gait is transferred from the sole construction 20 via the heel pin 31 to the rod 37. Proper engagement the heel pin tip 33 with the rod 37 is essential to avoid the heel profile 35 breaking.

As can be seen from Figure 4, in order for the heel construction 30 to be presented in its normal configuration for use in this first embodiment of high heel shoe, the rod 37 is arranged vertically, as indicated by line a, the heel pin 31 must be presented to engage with the heel insert 36 at an angle offset from the vertical, as indicated by line b. That is to say, the angle x between the horizontal c, taken from underneath the sole construction 20, and the line of approach b of the heel pin 31 is greater than 90°. The line of approach b and angle x are determined by the shape and construction of the heel profile 35 and the orientation of the heel insert 36 therein.

As can be seen in Figure 4, in order to adopt the correct line of approach b for the heel pin 31 to engage with the heel profile 35, the sole construction must effectively be rotated from the horizontal c about a rotation point d at or adjacent the boundary areas 19 such that the forefoot areas 12 are elevated relative thereto. However in use, the body weight of the wearer, as indicated at e, will urge the forefoot areas 12 back towards the horizontal c, rotating them around the rotation point d and causing the sole construction 20 to flex at the boundary areas 19.

The rod 37 preferably has a non circular cross section, so that it can be rotationally positioned by reference to its cross section, so that the angle of the machined hole in the rod 37 is matched to the angle of the heel pin 31 at that particular heel height during placement of the rod 37 in the heel construction 30.

Referring now to Figure 5, there is shown the engagement of the sole construction 20 with a second heel construction, generally indicated 40, corresponding to a heel height of 80 mm. The second heel construction 40 comprises a heel profile 45, and has a heel insert 36, rod 37, and cap 38, as hereinbefore described with reference to Figure 4. The engagement of the heel pin 31 with the heel construction 40 is also otherwise as hereinbefore described with reference to Figure 4.

However, in view of the increased height of the second heel construction 40 relative to the first heel construction 30 described above with reference to Figure 4, the heel insert 36 is oriented differently in the heel profile 45. With the heel profile 45 presented in its normal configuration for use in the first embodiment of high heel shoe, i.e. with the rod 37 arranged vertically, as indicated by line a, the heel pin 31 is now presented to engage with the heel insert 36 at an approach angle b substantially aligned with the vertical. That is to say, the angle x between the horizontal c, taken from underneath the sole construction 20, and the line of approach b of the heel pin 31 is substantially 90°. The forefoot areas 12 are thus generally horizontally disposed, and the sole construction 20 is effectively in a neutral configuration with substantially no flexing. The rod 37 preferably has either has a non circular cross section, or the heel pin 31 could engage in a machined hole directly at the center of the rod 37, which does not require any rotational positioning.

Referring now to Figure 6, there is shown the engagement of the sole construction 20 with a third heel construction, generally indicated 50, corresponding to a heel height of 100 mm. The third heel construction 50 comprises a heel profile 55, and has a heel insert 36, rod 37, and cap 38, as hereinbefore described with reference to Figure 4. The engagement of the heel pin 31 with the heel construction 50 is also otherwise as hereinbefore described with reference to Figure 4.

Flowever, in view of the further increased height of the third heel construction 50 relative to the first and second heel constructions 30, 40 described above with reference to Figures 4 and 5, the heel insert 36 is oriented differently again in the heel profile 55. With the heel profile 55 presented in its normal configuration for use in the first embodiment of high heel shoe, i.e. with the rod 37 arranged vertically, as indicated by line a, the heel pin 31 is now presented to engage with the heel insert 36 at an approach angle b offset from the vertical, but in the opposite direction to that described above with reference to Figure 4. That is to say, the angle x between the horizontal c, taken from underneath the sole construction 20, and the line of approach b of the heel pin 31 is now less than 90°.

As can be seen in Figure 6, in order to adopt the correct line of approach b for the heel pin 31 to engage with the heel profile 55, the sole construction 20 must again effectively be rotated from the horizontal c about the rotation point d at or adjacent the boundary areas 19, but in the opposite direction to that described above with reference to Figure 4, such that the forefoot areas 12 are now depressed relative thereto. Flowever in use, the forefoot areas 12 will be urged back towards the horizontal c, by impact with the ground, as indicated by arrow e, rotating them around the rotation point d and causing the sole construction 20 to flex at the boundary areas 1 9.

The rod 37 preferably has a non circular cross section, so that it can be rotationally positioned by reference to its cross section. The angle of the machined hole is matched to the angle of the heel pin 31 at that particular heel height during placement of the rod 37 in the heel construction 50.

Referring now to Figure 7, there is shown the engagement of the sole construction 20 with a heel construction 80, for use in a second embodiment of high heel shoe in which the rod 37 is aligned with the heel pin 31 . The heel construction 70 shown in Figure 7 corresponds to a heel height of 95 mm.

The heel pin 31 preferably engages in a machined hole directly at the center of the rod 37. The rod 37 preferably has one or more non circular side surfaces, so that it can be positioned within the heel construction 70 at the rotational position at which its bottom surface is parallel to the ground, and is matched during placement of the rod 37 in the heel construction 70.

Referring now to Figure 8, there is shown the engagement of the sole construction 20 with a heel construction 80, for use in a third embodiment of high heel shoe in which the rod 37 is disposed at an angle from the vertical, mirroring that of the heel pin 31 . The heel construction 80 shown in Figure 8 corresponds to a heel height of 1 00 mm.

The rod 37 can in principle be disposed at any angle, for more versatility in designing heel constructions, but the machined hole in the rod 37 for engagement of heel pin 31 must always follows the angle of the heel pin 31 .

The rod 37 preferably has a non circular cross section, so that it can be rotationally positioned within the heel construction 80. This enables the angle at which the bottom surface of the rod 37 is parallel to the ground to be matched during placement of the rod 37 in the heel construction 80. The angle of the machined hole is also matched to the angle of the heel pin 31 at that particular heel height during placement of the rod 37 in the heel construction 80. Referring now to Figures 9 to 12, there is shown a high heel shoe, generally indicated 60, according to a second aspect of the present invention. The shoe 60 is formed around a sole construction 10, and further comprises an upper 61 , an outsole 62, and a heel construction 70 affixed by a screw 41. For ease of reference, the high heel shoe 60 is shown in Figures 9 to 12 with a first embodiment of sole construction 10 as described above with reference to Figure 1 , having a first skeleton sole (insole) 1 1 only, and with a standard heel construction 70, rather than the interchangeable heel constructions described above with reference to Figures 4 to 6, though it should be appreciated that the features of the high heel shoe 60 described below with reference to Figures 9 to 12 also apply to other combinations of sole construction and heel construction.

With reference to Figure 12, the enhanced strength of the sole construction 10 enables the shoe 60 to be constructed with a single screw 41 passing through the mounting point 18, and into the heel construction 70. Additional peripheral screws may also be utilised if desired.

As can best be seen in Figure 10, the upper 61 is secured to the bottom surface 23 of the insole 11 , by being received in the lasting allowances 15. The depth of the lasting allowances 15 are substantially equal to the thickness of the upper 61 so as to present a substantially flush surface for attachment of the outsole 62. The upper 61 is secured to the insole 11 in the heel area 13 by gluing, the glue being applied directly to the bottom surface 23 of the insole 1 1 , and to the upper 61 prior to and/or during the lasting process. The upper 61 is further secured to the insole 1 1 by means of nails 42. The outsole 62 has a central rib 63 adapted to be received in a recess formed in the bottom surface 23 of the insole 11 corresponding to the location of the central rib 17 on the top surface 22 of the insole 11.

The formation of the skeleton sole 1 1 from carbon fibre composite material enables the thickness of the sole construction 10 to be reduced without compromising strength or rigidity, and further obviates the need for a metal shank to be incorporated into the high heel shoe 60. This frees up space within the shoe 60 for the inclusion of a footbed 65 to be formed on top of the sole construction 10.

The footbed 65 is formed from cushioning material, and can be constructed to a greater thickness than cushioning provided in conventional high heel shoes, in view of the additional space made available by reducing the thickness of the sole construction 10. This leads to greatly enhanced comfort for the wearer.

The footbed 65 can include inserts 66 of material adapted to provide further enhanced cushioning, additional wear resistance, or other desired properties as required. These may particularly be provided in the forefoot 12 and heel 13 areas, as shown in Figures 9, 11 and 12.

Referring now to Figures 13 to 16, there is shown an exploded view of a high heel shoe 60 and cross sections along the lines A-B, C-D and E-F (when the components are assembled), according to a second aspect of the present invention. The shoe 60 is formed around a sole construction 10, and further comprises an upper 61 , an outsole 62, and a heel construction 40 having a heel profile 45 affixed by a screw 41.

As can best be seen in Figure 14, the upper 61 is secured to the bottom surface of the insole 11 substantially the same as described in Figure 1 , by being received in the lasting allowances 15. The depth of the recess is substantially equal to the thickness of the upper so as to present a flush surface with the recessed surface of the insole 1 1 for attachment of the outsole 62.

As can best be seen in Figure 15, portions of the insole protrude from the recessed surface of the insole, such as the heel mount protrusions 100 and rib protrusion 101. These are not covered by the upper 61 and remain exposed after lasting and cutting the excess lasting allowance leather.

Additional reinforcing inserts 103, made out of hard material, that at least partially match the shape of the protruding area not covered by the upper 61 , are placed on the underside of the insole 1 1 and fill in heel mount protrusion 100 and rib protrusion 101 to create a completely flush surface for the outsole 62. In some embodiments of the invention there is only a reinforcing insert 103 in the heel mounting protrusion 100, and in others reinforcing inserts 103 are placed in the rib protrusion 101 of the insole 1 1.

The reinforcing insert 103 for heel mounting protrusion 100 enables screwing on a standard heel construction 40 for high heel shoes, and attaching a standard outsole 62 for high heel shoes, without any gaps remaining between the bottom surface of the insole 1 1 , and the top surface of the heel construction 40 and outsole 62.