Sunday, March 27, 2011

The Circle of Footwear Life

In response to a post on Shoe Smitten asking for a show and tell of shoe collections, I Iooked at my closet (and spare bedroom) full of shoes this weekend with pride and a little embarassment and snapped a photo to send in. I refuse to admit to any specific numbers by the way - I only checked the "46+" box!  But it got me thinking, about why women love shoes so much. It's such a part of our lives. The love of footwear is a journey: honed, developed and grown into an eventual full out obsession almost from the time we are born.

Our adoration starts at a young age; as a baby girl we get our very first pair of cute little pink booties, and then the shiny red Mary Janes, and next a pair of beloved black and white saddle shoes. Even the socks made for baby girls have bows and straps and lace embroidered into the fabric, just like the fancy embellishments on a shoe. Yes, we start loving footwear young indeed.

Eventually, from baby girls we grow into little girls who watch Disney films. Enter Cinderella and her lovely glass slippers; Cinderella who has a fairy godmother and mice helping out with the chores, Cinderella who gets the handsome prince and a pimped out castle in Disney World. We start to wonder, “maybe it was the shoes that made all the difference.” Then when Mom thought we were old enough to handle the Wicked Witch, we were allowed to watch The Wizard of Oz. If you thought animated simple clear shoes were cool, then the sparkly, vibrant, Technicolor, ruby red slippers were etched into your mind forever. After seeing that movie, "red" and "heels" go together forever in your mind! 

Then we get a bit older and go off to school. There we participate in a multitude of after school activities. The options are endless--dancing in perfect pale pink ballet slippers, become a short stop and get brand new black Nike cleats, glide across the ice and get figure skates and warm boots, cheerleading in Reebok cheer shoes, basketball in Air Jordans, tap dance in capezios, the list of activities with matching shoes could go on for quite some time.

Eventually from tweens to teens and all bets are off. Now it's time to "fit in and to be cool." What’s considered cool of course, changes; the Candies, Jellies and platform clogs of yesteryear (yes, I’m dating myself) have turned into today, where cool consists of 50 different styles of UGGs, sparkly Chuck Taylor Converse, oversized skateboarding shoes, and an extensive variety of flip flops, just to start the closet collection, and we haven't even mentioned the heels!

Once our teenage self moves off to college we begin to become the woman we want to be. At this point, we start develop our own real sense of style and shop, not for our parents, or our schools, but for ourselves. Maybe we experiment with Birkenstocks and combat boots (don't remind me - it was only a phase) or maybe we buy our first pair of real stilettos. We browse and shop. We discover the classic chic of the Audrey Hepburn look in cigarette pants and black ballet slipper flats. We're bombarded with the likes of Carrie Bradshaw and powerhouse celebrities in red soled Louboutins. We read all the fashion bloggers and Vogue, Elle, and Glamour and start to equate fabulous shoes with power and success. Finally it makes sense--when we wear heels, our legs appear skinnier, our butts look better, we look taller and thinner, and we definitely feel more confident in them.

Eventually we get married and have children (ok-some of us, like me, remain single).The married ones race between PTA and soccer camp; we cook, clean, and chauffeur the world from place to place. As we get older and gain a few pounds, we realize that no matter what our dress size, we'll always fit into our shoes. We can always slip in to the cobalt blue scalloped edged pumps, the champagne colored velvet peep toes, and the over the knee, too sexy for a mommy, black lace up boots. We ’ll always have our shoes.

The future perhaps? As we age, our preferred heel length will undoubtedly become lower and lower until we may be in loafers the majority of the time… and really, so life goes. Of course one day we’ll pretty much just shuffle around in comfy slippers, enjoying retirement. But by then our granddaughters will be scouring through the attic reviving our old footwear as vintage, bringing new life to them through their love of shoes, and so goes the circle of footwear life!

Friday, March 25, 2011

Shoe of the Day: Christian Louboutin

Hello! I thought I would start out your Friday right by showing you some delicious shoes, aka Christian Louboutin. Many of these "I want you right now!" shoes are listed on the site and believe me, when you see them you will want them right now! Let's take a look and if you just click on the shoe it will take you straight to the shoe's auction. How convenient, right?!

 Hopefully these beauties got your attention! They got mine as I posted them! ;) Not to put the pressure on but the auction for most of these shoes end in about 7 hours...hopefully enough time to catch your eye or I should say your feet. ;) I have my eye on every single pair. Hope you have a wonderful Friday full of shoetastic fun!

Thursday, March 24, 2011


My inspiration was showgirls…I started my career working for the Folies Bergère, and ended up combining shoes and showgirls.
~Christian Louboutin

Monday, March 21, 2011

There Was An Old Woman Who Lived In Her Shoe…

But How Did She Get There???

There was an old woman, who lived in her shoe… but she certainly wasn’t always old and probably didn’t always live in that darn shoe either.  So how did she get there then?  I was supposed to be working this weekend, but I couldn't get the thought out of my mind.  There are a lot of possibilities and so I decided to jot down a few and share them.  Let me know what you think, and share your own ideas too.
There’s a great chance she was just hit really hard by a recession.  She was a single mom and had a lovely little three bedroom home in the suburbs where she commuted to the city for her corporate job.  Her many kids were able to sleep comfortably between two bedrooms through the use of bunk beds and their love of one another.  They probably attended private school, most assuredly had a dog named Buddy, and enjoyed a quaint white picket fence.  Well, cutbacks and the economy had an impact on everyone and the old woman was no exception.  After selling Buddy to the neighbors, using the fence for fire wood, and eventually foreclosing on their home, the family had no choice.  Mom’s collection of sensible work pumps suddenly seemed completely capable of being mortared together and used as a make shift home.
Then again, perhaps the Old Woman was married … and married well at that.  She was the college sweetheart of a man she stood by while he worked his way through medical school.  They married young and she kept a clean and organized home for the good doctor.  She was content and well cared for.  She popped out a couple of babies and continued to be the trophy wife her husband so desired.  She thought they would grow old together, but after she turned 40 she noticed her husband had grown distant.  When confronted, he confessed that he was not only having an affair but that he planed on leaving his wife and marrying his young mistress.  She becames all too familiar with the term “starter wife” as the doctor upgraded and the Old Woman officially joined the First Wives Club.  To add insult to injury she was turned out without a penny and regreted signing that pre-nup.  She packed her bags and realized she has an inordinate amount of shoes (the doctor was good for something, most notably his credit cards).  Falling back on the only skills she has (domestic ones); she whips out her sewing machine and stitches her footwear together into a shack that resembles a large boot. (alright, I know it’s tough to sew shoes together, but do you have other ideas???)   
Or maybe she was just a really fabulous single gal in the city who used her trust fund to have a designer residence built in the shape of an amazing shoe.  Feeling awfully lonely despite her fantastic footwear collection, she began adopting kids.  She couldn’t stop… acquiring them like designer handbags and quickly finding out how much joy and fulfillment they brought to her life.
There are surely more explanations for the Old Woman’s predicament, but I’m guessing she was just like so many other woman: obsessed with shoes and trying her best to be a good mom!    

Saturday, March 19, 2011

I Can Do Anything...

Oh,  I can do anything in high heels.

~Holly Jankofsky

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Initial Thoughts

Shoes. While they’re undoubtedly a necessity, they’re also the subject of many a splurge, the talk of countless conversations among girlfriends, sometimes the reason given for an outstanding athletic performance. They’re made to protect feet but also to decorate them.

People of all walks love them and for lots of reasons. They’ve been embedded into popular culture. There are entire movies based around them: The Wizard of Oz, Cinderella, The Devil Wears Prada, The Christmas Shoes, and In Her Shoes. Musicians have been writing and singing songs about them for years: Elvis had his Blue Suede Shoes and The Beatles had an Old Brown Shoe, KC and the Sunshine Band had Boogie Shoes, Nelly had an outright obsession with his Air Force Ones, and Nancy Sinatra had a one wicked pair of boots.

Walk a mile in my shoes, wouldn’t want to be in his shoes, goody two shoes, who’s going to fill their shoes… there are lots of sayings we use about shoes; in fact, shoes have infiltrated the way we talk. If someone said, “I would kill for some Jimmy Choo’s” or “Check out my new Nike’s” most people would know exactly what they’re talking about.

Bowling, ballet, baseball, skiing, skating running, climbing, hiking, the beach, the bath, the bedroom; for the work room, for the weekend… each sport we do, each place we go, a person needs a different pair of shoes for every little thing they do. It’s no wonder there is such an obsession with shoes!

And while everyone needs them, some of us want them just a little bit more. Some people want 100 pair; 300 pair, 1000 pair! We want shoes in leopard print and purple patterns and every imaginable height heel. We want shoes for $1.00 but we'd pay $1000 and eat less (it makes the shoes look better anyway). We want vintage as well as new and special releases. We want to bronze them (it started when we were very young...), and we want to display them like art. We want the funky, the freaky, the fabulous. We wear odd sizes, or average sizes, it doesn't matter. Our boyfriends and husbands think we're crazy, our girlfriends think we're goddesses. What can I say, some us were born to be shoe addicts, and we've learned to live with it.
Take a breath… all you Carrie Bradshaws of the world, there is now a place to connect shoe lovers everywhere.  If The Shoe Doesn't Fit, is an auction site for shoe lovers.  A place to sell, swap or shop for shoes and shoe accessories, and this is the site's blog, dedicated to connecting all those people, whose lives are touched by shoes, in some way, for whatever reason. 
I hope you'll join me, and our contributing bloggers in a conversation as we chat about shoes, life, and everything in between. 

(Note -- portions of this post were originally posted on Speaker In Heels)