I first saw the movie The Red Shoes as a child, fascinated by the beauty of the ballet, the fabulous costumes and the ultra-glamorous London-Paris-Monte Carlo life it depicted in scratchy 1940s Technicolour.

So I was very excited to see that one of the free events being held as part of State of Design 2010, Victoria’s design festival, was a screening of The Red Shoes. Not just at any cinema though – a screening held in the wunderkammer workshops of shoemakers Preston Zly, where everyone was invited to wear their red shoes.

We arrived at the dimly lit workshop via a nondescript carpark off Smith Street and was greeted by the smell of popcorn. Each guest was given a paper bag of popcorn, a glass of pink sparkling and a little chocolate – so cute! We were all asked to take a full –length photo with our red shoes – mine were red suede pumps by Georgina Goodman which you may have seen before. All red shoes worn to the event will form part of a photographic installation.

Inside the workshop red shoes abounded in the cabinets, on the walls and resting eerily on silenced shoe-making equipment – very Victorian Gothic.

Being early birds, we claimed the best spot – front row of the seats, behind the big mattress and cushions set out for the latecomers. My low easy-chair even had a granny crochet rug, a necessity after a while in the winter night chill.

As for the movie itself, many of you may be familiar with the classic 1948 film so I won’t delve into details – but if you’ve not seen it, get it out on DVD! The acting is a bit OTT compared to naturalistic modern methods but it’s still a lovely journey into my favourite place in the whole wide world – the Royal Opera House at Covent Garden – and the dream of ballet.

On leaving, we were all presented with a gift bag – a pair of luxurious Leona Edmiston opaque tights and a gift voucher of $100 towards a pair of Preston Zly shoes form The Signet Bureau on Gertude St. Time for some more red shoes perhaps?

Tonight is the last screening of Preston Zly and The Red Shoes – there may still be seats so RSVP at info@prestonzlydesign.com or call +61 3 9417 2176.