I consider myself pretty typical when it comes to shoe shopping. A successful shopping trip usually includes a new pair of shoes. It doesn’t matter how many I have, if I see a nice pair on sale, it is a foregone conclusion that they will be going home with me. There is an unbridled joy that emerges when you take them out of the box, remove the tissue and slip them on your feet. And when you strut in front of your mirror? Pure bliss. When I was a child, I can remember putting on my mother’s high-heeled pumps, my foot sliding to the toe, as I struggled to walk in them. I felt so grown up.
To me, good shoes are a great investment. Well-made shoes last a long time. If you spend the money and time to care for a classic pair of shoes properly, they can last decades. I bought a pair of hand-crafted cowboy boots while in university and I have had them for over 30 years. They are nicely broken-in and fit like a glove. I dread the day I have to get a new pair.
It doesn’t matter if it’s the wrong time of the month and I am feeling bloated, a pair of shoes will always fit. Unlike your favourite jeans, if I put on ten pounds, my shoes will still fit. They will never send me into a depression – there are no “fat shoes” or “skinny shoes”. Plus, they come in so many colours, styles, and heel heights, you can never really have too many.
The best part about shoes is their power to completely change the look of an outfit, and your mood along with it. What you put on your feet can dress you up or dress you down. They can instantly boost your confidence. An outfit of trendy ripped jeans worn with a t-shirt and sneakers gives off a very different impression than if you wear the same outfit with a pair of shiny high heels. The best part of playing with your wardrobe choices is mixing things up and trying something different. Here are a few of my favourite styles and why they hold a special spot in my closet.
These are so versatile. Slip them on with a pair of skinny jeans, and you still look sophisticated. They will also work with dress pants. They are great with any summer dress and the best part is they are so comfortable. While many flats look too “sensible” a fair of ballet flats still allow you to look chic. They are a godsend to tall women who don’t want to tower over their friends while in heels. The best part is that they fit in your purse. I always bring a pair with me when I attend a wedding. After standing in high heels or hitting the dance floor, it’s great to whip them out of your purse and slip them on your tired feet.
What are statement shoes, you may ask? They are that over-the-top, high heeled shoe that screams for attention. They may be red or multi-coloured, strappy or a pump, adorned with feathers or rhinestones, but when you put them on, you are demanding that the world notice you. They are the shoe you wear when you are meeting your ex’s new girlfriend, or any situation when you need that extra boost of self-assurance. If you don’t have any, go get a pair now.
Whether tall boots or booties, a nice pair of good-quality boots look great. They exude style. They go great with skinny jeans, providing the right note of carefree and casual. Riding boots that have a low heel will give you a certain look while a tall boot with a higher heel will change the mood.
What would Saturday morning be like without a pair of comfy sneakers? These are your workhorse shoes. The “I have-a-million-errands-to-run” shoes. They take you from grocery store to soccer practice. Made in canvas, they can be thrown into the washing machine. Made in leather, they bring a little extra sophistication. They go great with jeans, sweats, shorts and even a summer dress.
So, the next time you are looking at an awesome pair of shoes, wondering if you should splurge, think about the power of those shoes in your hands. How they can boost your mood and make you smile. Think about how many outfits they can go with, how many outfits they can transform and how long you will end up keeping them. Then walk to the cash register.
Dani K. is a shopaholic with too much of her closet space dedicated to shoes. She is also a marketing writer and self-professed grammar geek who believes that words matter, exercise is a great drug, animals are the best therapists, and that most problems seem smaller after a bowl of ice cream. When she is not shopping, you can find her creating beautiful art or dancing in the kitchen while cooking up a storm, wearing heels of course.
Oh…yeah, she reads a lot too.