A scientist earlier this year in preparation for the V&A's Shoes: Pleasure and Pain exhibition that opened in June, was asked to determine if an ancient sandal was made with real gold. The pointed little flip-flop-like shoe dated from about 30 BC-AD 300 from Pharaonic or early Roman Egypt times. It was dirtied and delicate but under a microscope it was discovered that these sandals were created with plant fibre and decorated with real gold leaf. The shoe wasn't just remarkably preserved considering the owner actually wore these (rather than using them only for ceremony) but it also demonstrated our fascination with adorning our shoes – elevating them from mere feet protectors. Two millennia on and Miu Miu's glittering Mary-Janes are the gold leafed Ancient Egyptian equivalent.