chapter  8
20 Pages

Sizing Feet and Footwear

ByWilliam J. Bodziak

This chapter provides general information about how the foot is measured, the origin of shoe sizing, various shoe sizing systems, what is involved in determining the shoe size of a particular person, and some of the reasons for variations in a manufacturer's shoe size designations. It provides information regarding the size of crime scene impressions and the design/size relationship of footwear. Barleycorns, a drawing are often mentioned when discussing the origins of shoe sizing measurements. A barleycorn was the smallest Anglo-Saxon unit of length, and was defined as 1/3 inch. The first recorded shoe sizing system was reportedly introduced in 1688 in England by Randle Holme and was based on a ¼-inch system. The next recorded description of a shoe sizing system was not until 1856 by Robert Gardiner in England and used a scale where each full size was 1/3 inch longer, taken from the barleycorn system.