I love gifting, especially self-gifting and of course I buy myself shoes. I took a break from the hustle and bustle of the season to browse my two favorite local shoe shops for a little holiday retail therapy. First stop, Benjamin Lovell shoes , home of comfort brands and the best kept secret sale in the back of their South Street store. This is my favorite place for a great brand at a fantastic price. Pickin's were slim, probably because they were coming off a 20% off sale. So on I went to my fave fashion shoe shop, Bus Stop Boutique. London born owner Elena Brennan curates the BEST brands with just the right amount of interest and edge, John Fluevog, Miista, United Nude, Coclico, just to name a few. I tired on several pairs including Jeffery Campbell's Ibiza last. I like this shoe - bit of a flatform, patent leather, bootie style and this fabulous extended heel and tongue detail. The overall shape reminds me a bit of an elf boot so just right for the season. Unfortunately, the Ibiza last is not for me. It's just too thin through the toe box. Boo hiss for me. Don't feel badly for me though. I did indulge and took advantage of their construction sale. A sexy new, comfy Melina beauty from Coclico AND an edgy new Micky combat boot by United Nude came home with me. Check out my Instagram to get a peek. Shoes of Salvation posted every Thursday.
After several days of torrential rain, I thought I'd say a few words about the humble Wellie. Available at a variety of price points and with some very fashionable styling, the wellie is an essential part of any shoe wardrobe. I have several pairs (well of course I do). The pair at the farm came in particularly handy this weekend. Stuck under a low pressure system coupled with a passing hurricane, tides were exceptionally high. Good thing it wasn't too high. These wellies are on their last legs and have a slice in the right vamp:( It's a good thing the farm settles next week or I'd have to buy another pair. Wellies are also an essential at the beach. They are the best for running the dog on sands and surf. (I'm feeling like I have Martha Stewart voice today...) From a fashion standpoint they are an essential as well. As a public transportation commuter that needs to look fashionable at work, it is important to have fashion wellies in my repertoire. I have selected a low heeled leopard print and glossy black flat chelsea boot to pair with any rainy day outfit. My final pair are suede, that's right sued. Who in their right mind would wear suede in the rain? Me, that's who. This pair of waxed suede beauties are just right for fall. From the great orange color to the rugged sole and warm lining, these fit the bill when it's dark, dreary and damp. My collection has cost from about $15-$100 per pair. They are well worth the investment.
One of my most favorite shoes for spring is the slingback. It's sexy and ladylike all at the same time. It's a fabulous transition to sandals. You can get your feet into sandal shape gradually. Heels are so much easier than toes to present after a long hard winter. These are on of my most favorite and versatile pairs of slingbacks. I purchased them from M&S in London in the early noughties and have had the lifts replaced several times. They are retro and ladylike with the square-toe and buckle, as well as practical with the kitten heel. They work with slacks and a skirt or dress. They are a fantastic show for travel. Next up a wonderful pair of Fluevogs - I got these in Boston several years ago and they do not disappoint. I love the color and texture (soft suede). They are pre-distressed so not to worry if they get kicked about a bit. They are wonderful transitional shoes with maximum coverage while working on your spring reveal. Again a good pairing with trousers and dresses. One of my favorite outfits is these shoes with a turquoise dress. The orange and blue are complementary colors and when combined they make quite a statement. These are a bit less practical with the heel height, but the heel is sturdy and there is a bit of a platform so they are not as high as one might expect. You've seen these before, but I couldn't resist showing them again. They are an excellent 3rd pair to round out my slingback collection. They are still going strong on trend at 3 or 4 years old. Oxford, slingback and metallic all in one and quite practical too with the Fluevog take on the kitten heel. As you can see, dress them up or down, slacks or skirts and dresses. Another great investment. So treat your heels to some foot cream each night and a pumice in your bath or shower each day and enjoy Slingback Season.
I've been asked to participate in an article on shoes for the d&mMagazine through the Design & Merchandising program at Drexel University. I was interviewed about my Icelandic shoes by KronKron, featured in my City in a Shoe post earlier this year. I was also asked to participate in a shoe photoshoot. I decided to take my entire Icelandic shoe collection. The photographer, Leah Bank and stylist, Jacquelyn Fleurant selected 2 pairs, the KronKron's and my red perch booties with optional buckle by MKM, Maria K. Magnusdottir. Here's a couple of my faves that made the final cut. (NOTE: I have taken the liberty of cropping images further.)
I re-discovered a delightful little book filled with shoe wisdom this week, The Shoes of Salvation by Edward Monkton. My favorite shoe enabler gave me this book as a gift. It is worth remembering the lessons imparted in the tiny tome. Shoes do offer happiness, pleasure and ecstasy, although they often come at a cost and I'm not just talking about dollars and cents. The most beautiful shoes can pinch, hurt and cause pain. When you feel that agony, just remember it is the shoes reminding you of their presence! Grin and bear the agony knowing that a pair of fabulous shoes really can make you feel beautiful and complete. Find a seat, preferably where you can show them off;)