I've been a fan of "The Wizard of Oz" since I was three years old and I became obsessed with the shoes from the movie very early on. I amassed a somewhat impressive "Oz" collection, starting from when I was 7 years old until my early 20's. My collection, along with everything I owned, was lost in a 2004 fire that was started by a downstairs neighbor. Aside from a few random "Oz" gifts given to me over the years, I never started a new collection.
During my teen years I had created several replica pairs of slippers, first using glitter, then loose sequins, and eventually pre-strung sequins that were glued into place. I would dismantle the finished pair to start over and improve them. My work continues to evolve in a similar fashion, as in recent years I have rekindled my interest in replicating the shoes, but this time creating them the same way as the originals. I have invested thousands of dollars in curating my ideal ruby slipper supplies, and I'm almost to the point where I'm ready to to make some pairs for myself.
I've spent several thousand hours of researching the shoes themselves, sequin aging, tracking down costumers, technicolor experts, costume historians, staff of the M-G-M auction, museums, Oz collectors... the list could go on. I'm quite restless while working on slipper related things and rarely does a day go by where I don't do some sort of research associated with them.