I do not want a 12-step program. I do not need Shoe Shoppers Anonymous. I will admit to 50-some boxes of gorgeous shoesstacked in my closet, and yes, an assortment by the bookshelf, beneath the bed, and gathered around the living room sofa.
My last few months? Stressful. My need for shoe therapy? Urgent!
And no, these “Iron Fist” numbers are not shoes I would purchase. But they’re cool, creative, and fun. Come on. Be honest. Doesn’t their panache perk you right up?
Now some may say I have a little problem. Others will never understand the Shoe Shopping Sisterhood. But I don’t consider it anything unusual. After all, shoes – unlike clothes – always fit. And you know what they say… if the shoe fits, wear it!
My personal style? It’s never been very “in your face.” My whimsical tendencies are more likely to be expressed from the ankles down, with a preference for pumps and strappy stilettos. But I nonetheless appreciate shoe styles of all sorts, especially those that compliment a woman’s foot as well as the shape of her legs.
And now may I offer you Exhibit Number 1? In my search for therapeutic exploration, feast on this exquisite Kate Spade “Lisa” High Heel. It is flirty, girly, and with a hint of naughty. It has the perfectly pointed toe, sheer fabric sides, a coquettish bow… and when I tried these beauties on, quel plaisir. I felt as though I’d slipped my tootsies into fine lingerie, and the experience was sublime.
As for those harrowing heel heights that remain surprisingly prevalent (5” is no longer uncommon), even a footwear fashionista like myself rejects the prospects of a broken ankle. I wear everything from 2″ to 3″ routinely, 4″ when I go out on the town, and I own only one pair of 5″ platforms (surprisingly comfortable). I might also add that my true Achilles Heel is anything with graceful design that is well proportioned and easy to walk in.
Care to verify? Peek at these Kate Spade styles, and note the range of heels available. Good news for all of us, and I’ve noted this trend among many designers and price points.
Speaking of proportions, well-proportioned not only means the shoe, it means you. A tiny woman with gargantuan heels? Ridiculous. (That would be moi if I attempted anything clunky.) That means a No Go on the Monster Heels, but a taller or larger woman can carry off something more.
And now for Exhibit 2: These magnificent Stuart Weitzmans, and do pay attention to the colors.
Exhibit 4 – Via Spiga is also showing remarkable variety in heel heights, from flats to 5″ and more. Et les couleurs! The reds and blue-purples are fabulous!
And now I must digress. I was dumbstruck by these Brian Atwood metallic platform pumps, which an amicable sales person at Bloomingdale’s most graciously agreed to model. This remarkable sparkling surface actually changes color in the light as you move – transforming from silver to gold and back again. Mesmerizing! Also, while the platform + heel yields 5.5″ in height, these shoes are absolutely fantastic on a woman who is both tall enough and confident enough to carry them off.
I give you Exhibit 5 – Brian Atwood’s Platform Pump “Fontanne.”
Goody Two Shoes
As you may have noticed, jewel tones pop at every turn – vibrant purples, cobalt and deep fuchsia, along with a range of reds, plum and burgundy, Bordeaux and oxblood, and delicious browns like espresso and chocolate.
I must give a nod to two bold beauties – Exhibit 6 (above) – Vince Camuto pumps in a deep blue-purple and Enzo Angiolini “Cimino” pumps in dark purple suede with an irresistible lacing detail on the heel. They’re comfortable, stunning on the foot, and under $100.
Putting Your Best Foot Forward
Time for an educational tidbit?
I used to think that snazzy heels dated to the days of Marie Antoinette. (Poor girl. Don’t want to be in her shoes.) But it turns out thatMaria de Medici had a special pair of hauts talons designed for her in Florence in 1533, for her wedding to Henri II. Apparently, the trend took hold in France by 1580 – and no, I am not a Fine Footwear Historian. Not yet, anyway!
|There she is, the gorgeous D.A. Wolf (left) with the lovely salesperson whom she told me was not only pretty, but also extremely sweet. I like her dress.|
As is the case for millions of women – my best therapy is shoe therapy. I’m a happy camper when digging through the racks at Nordstrom’s or, when I’m very lucky, managing to find myself in Paris in time for the summer soldes. And yes, of course, I delay gratification and shop those sales on both sides of the Atlantic!
But when I need to put my best foot forward – to look good and feel good – I make sure I’m in shoes that are comfortable and beautiful. I don’t assume that the most fashionable options will be difficult to wear, nor too expensive for my budget. And I certainly don’t worry about what others might find age appropriate.
After all, as with other fashion choices, isn’t it all a matter of confidence?
A huge merci to Kim, Jeff, and the staff at Bloomingdale’s who were extraordinarily gracious in assisting with this Shoe Therapy!© D. A. Wolf