Monday, December 14, 2015

Monday Musings: A Shoe Story

Let’s talk shoes. 

I’ve always been a huge lover of handbags, but I’ve only recently started to understand the adoration for shoes. Just like a statement bag, shoes can be the accessory that ties your look together, or the exclamation point on the end of an outfit. Alternatively, a worn out or badly matching pair of shoes can take away from an otherwise awesome look. Plus, aesthetics aside, it's important to have shoes that you can comfortably walk in (limping around all day is definitely not what you are going for). Although I have several pairs of shoes that I love, I haven’t invested heavily in this part of my wardrobe, and I wanted to change that with the purchase of a classic designer pair: the black pointed toe pump.

While I was in Dallas last month, I made a stop at Neiman Marcus and tried on all of the brands I’ve heard of but never owned: Manolo Blahnik (the most comfortable), Christian Louboutin (the sexiest style), and Jimmy Choo (a mix of both). I 100% recommend doing this, because I was a different size in all three! I was all set to buy the Manolos, but decided to put them on hold and keep shopping around the mall before committing. I am so glad that I did, because I wandered into J.Crew and was very impressed with what I found! I tried on several pairs of their pumps, and noticed that the leather upper and sole were of the same quality as the others I’d tried on at Neiman’s, and were a fraction of the price. I loved the Colette style out of all of the black pumps, but I decided on a different shape altogether: these gray Adele suede booties. They are comfortable, unique, super well done with the suede covered heel, and I’m sure I’ll be wearing them for several years to come. There are limited sizes left in gray suede here & here and in black suede here, if you love them as much as I do.

Once I got back to Baltimore, I realized that I did still want what I had originally set out to find, so I started the search once again. Lucky for me, Nordstrom put these awesome Sam Edelman sling backs on sale for $70, and I ordered them in my usual size. I was honestly amazed when they came in the mail - they are the perfect pair of black pumps that I have been searching for. Truly beautiful in person and comfortable enough to walk around in all day. At this price, I cannot recommend them more! 

So at the end of the day, while I did save up with the luxury brand name in mind, I ended up with two pair of beautiful shoes of similar quality and even better style for less than half of what I would have spent on one designer pair. I am sure that I’ll splurge on a really special pair of heels someday, or even better, a beautiful pair of flats, but for now, I’m really impressed with the quality and style of what contemporary brands are offering. Sometimes it is very fun to have the name brand, and in those cases, I’ve had great luck with my favorite online retailer: The Real Real, and with my favorite brick & mortar store: UAL. This may seem like a silly or superficial experience, but it reinforced the reason that I started this blog. Buying the best quality you can find doesn’t always mean you have to break the bank, and splurging on something just for the name doesn’t always give you the style that you are looking for. With so many places to shop and so many designers with their hats in the ring, you have many options to use to your advantage! Don't spend where you can save, and put that extra $$$ toward a killer handbag :) xx H

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