Just a few kilometers from Venice, in the heart of a region where savoir-faire is a story of long-held passion, is where this Christian Dior pump first sees the light of day. A single pair of Dioressence requires more than one hundred steps of production. Unveiling its mystery serves only to heighten its magic.

It all starts in the House’s footwear design studio. The pumps are born from a series of pen strokes in a sketch where their general line is put down on paper, then in a working drawing where each detail is specified, before potential colors are set out. Working closely with the last-maker, the heel-maker and the technician, the design studio team created a pump with a pure and distinctive line.

“Wearing high heels, women acquire a dancing gait, a swaying step that accentuates the effect of their dresses,” Christian Dior wrote in his memoirs. Dior pumps naturally grant those wearing them a sensual attitude. They flatter the arch of the instep and elongate the leg, shape the waist and accentuate the bust, in the manner of the New Look designs that burst from the couturier’s imagination in 1947. At that time high heels were made of wood, which rendered them fragile and not especially comfortable. Women walked in a stiffer, less supple style. The house of Dior decided to replace the wood with a metal stem, thus making possible the most refined and daring designs, including the famous curved heel, which was much more slender and sharper than anything up to that point. The highly architectural “talon-choc” shock heel marked a seismic moment in the history of footwear thanks to its daringly new and futuristic form.

Go behind the scenes and watch making of the iconic piece.