Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Àli Mode: My Shoe Problem

This post is reblogged from today's On This Day In Fashion.
The Charles James sandals that made the cut.
Don't let the title mislead you: I'm not a shoe addict, or even a "shoe person." A bag person? Sometimes. Jewelry person? Sure. But although I dream of wearing these and these and these, it’s probably not going to happen. Reason being that I wear a size 11-wide heels (size 10½ sneaker) and there is nothing fun about shoe shopping—let alone shoe wearing—when you have big feet. (I’m about one more back spasm away from investing in these.) So when Oprah starts praising Jesus over her fabulous Louboutins and how shoes are a woman’s greatest fashion investment because everyone looks good in them no matter what their weight, I just want to throw my Bjorn clog at the TV screen. (Okay, I lied; I don’t own any Bjorn clogs. But I’m too lazy to go upstairs and read the insides of any of the ugly clunkers I do own, the names of which either of us probably wouldn’t recognize anyway). The point is, finding a really hot pair of shoes that are also made well in my size is a challenge and usually depressing. Most stores stock one—one—pair of size 11s, absolutely no 10 1/2s and maybe two pairs of 10s. Forget about ordering online: Too many “11s” are 10s in disguise. At least there’s a Nordstrom Rack near my house—several, actually—with aisle after aisle of marked-down size 11s through 13s where I, along with a small group of cross-dressers, can usually find a few good scores. From there I’ve unearthed a pretty pair of black Louboutin pumps that fit terribly and four or five pairs of Taryn Rose
heels in buttery Italian leather, which fit like a dream, cost a fortune (I only buy them on sale) and, sadly, come in very, very few beautiful styles. I buy a lot of Seychelles, Joan & David and Calvin Klein. They’re practical if not a bit dull, come in size 11 and do the trick. But, in general, from the ankles down, I rarely look as chic as I do from there up.
My pretty wedding Ferragamos that stayed in the box...
All that said, shoes fascinate me from an artistic standpoint and I read Sea of Shoes regularly and all of that. And I’ve been loving the shoe-centric Stories Behind the Styles we’ve run this week (one of which, about Beth Levine, I wrote after going to an exhibition of her amazing work), making me want to get out there and give my big flippers another shot at sophistication. Yesterday’s Ferragamo story, though, might be my favorite, mainly because I recently invested in my very first pair of them for my wedding. Ever since I passed on a pair of $800 Prada booties in Fall of 2008, I’ve sworn I would reward myself and buy Prada heels “if I ever got married.” And once I was engaged earlier this year, I looked hard! But I couldn’t find a pair that was perfect with my Gary Graham gown and, frankly, still could not justify the expense of paying the equivalent of my rent for a pair of shoes that may or may not hurt my feet.

Read the full post, including what are the best and worst brands to buy for big feet and how even my personal stylist in Paris couldn't help my big feet, here: 

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