Diehards

Monday, 27 April 2009

Some Light Relief for Scarlet

Scarlet has been through the mill and needs some light relief and I can't think of anything more lightly relieving than shoes. The right pair works wonders for the legs, will see you through from dusk till dawn, and will garner many an admiring glance. It doesn't matter how much weight you put on, or lose, your shoe size will (usually) stay the same. They are easy to try on at the shops: no skulking off to changing rooms and having to strip off your thermals, and there are plenty to choose from for all budgets.

When I was about nineteen my future in-laws said you can tell a lot about a person from their shoes. I was only just being initiated into the ways of the middle-classes and this was news to me, but it must have worked its way in as for a time in my early thirties I was pretty obsessive when it came to shoes. The way I see it, it all began when I bought my first pair of Jimmy Choos


in the Frasers of Glasgow sale. I couldn't get over the fact that they were comfortable from the off. That, and everyone commented on how gorgeous they were. They seemed to take me to a new level of stylish, whenever I wore them I felt grown-up and in control. They gave me a kind of unquestionable power. Suddenly people listened to what I had to say; shop assistants and waiters seemed drawn to serve me. Having always been pretty invisible I reveled in my new status as noticeable in a good way.

After that I was hooked on 'good' shoes and rarely deigned to give even a sideways glance to the cheap shops. I wanted comfort and style, I didn't want to spend weeks breaking in someone's tacky efforts at providing the masses with fashionable footwear. I bought Prada, Gucci, Dolce and Gabbana, Dior and all number of others. Wherever I went I was praised for my shoes. It didn't seem to matter what else I was wearing or whether I'd washed my hair, my shoes said all that needed to be said about me: I was the right sort.

All this changed, of course, when I entered academia. Suddenly my shoes felt like fripperies. One needed more than a pair of Prada trainers or Jimmy Choo slingbacks to prove one's worth. And although a beautiful pair would still draw the desired comment from most women on the campus, that was no longer enough. Shoes had lost their shine. I spent my money on books instead.

For years I didn't buy shoes at all, I had enough to last a lifetime after all. But there's more to shoes than quantity, and recently I have begun to treat myself to the odd pair again. There are two reasons for this: my trainers have become embarrassingly smelly, and my heels are too high and wobbly for my aging sense of balance. Well that's what I've been telling myself, but I picked these up the other day in T K Maxx.


They are irresistibly soft and delicate, elegant and fashionable. Lord knows when I'll wear them, but they were a bargain and they make me feel like Carine Roitfeld. To compensate for their ridiculousness I bought these on Saturday.



They are high enough to do what only a heel can do for a leg, yet low and sturdy enough to not hinder walking. I will wear them all summer, they will give my old dresses a boost. I also got a pair of plimsolls for proper stomping, just to make doubly sure that I'm not an air-head.

18 comments:

Scarlet-Blue said...

You are lovely Eryl. Hmmm... I seem to be either stuck in plimsols or wellies most of the time, perhaps I should indulge myself with a pair of stunning shoes too...
SXX

Eryl Shields said...

I think you should Scarlet, you have certainly earned a pair of Louboutins in the last week or so. XXX

debra said...

I love the way those shoes look, but I am a sandle, clog and sneaker kind of girl. Must run in the family: #2 daughter declares that the best shoes are NONE.

Kim Ayres said...

This is the kind of subject that leaves me, and I suspect most men, completely baffled.

Shoes - for keep your feet warm, dry and comfortable.

I can't think of another reason for having them.

And yet none of the shoes most women buy seem to fit any of these criteria...

Eryl Shields said...

We all have our problems Debra – only joking, really!

Kim ~ if I stop to think about it I, too, become baffled. There is no practical reason for such shoes. I agree with David Hume though, that reason is and must stay a slave to the passions, and I suppose one could reason about mating. However this would infuriate those women who insist they dress only for themselves – possibly because they don't, really.

PI said...

Shoes can be a bit of a problem as one gets older and tends to teeter on anything higher than one and a half inches. My latest solution for the summer is to wear a maxi skirt which makes almost any footwear permissable. In fact i snapped up two bargains today;a flimsy brown Next creation and a sturdy denim Principles and bless you for teaching to stop hand washing. They have both had a quick swirl in the washer.
The shopping was inspired by my step-daughter who also picked up some good buys.

Kanani said...

I went through a shoe phase and at one time had 70. Boots, heels, sequins, fur, studs, fine leather --I had them all.
Then, like you, I found other things to be interested in. I gave away most of the shoes and now --well, I have to admit a fondness for flip flops.

Mary Witzl said...

I live in flip flops now. And when I'm teaching, I utterly rely on Josef Seibels. Those tan ones of yours look great, but even they would be too high for me (sighhh).

Conan Drumm said...

I'm with Kim, but I do believe in buying good shoes/boots that will look after you if you look after them. That said, I spend 80% of the time in pretend Birkenstocks that cost £8.

Eryl Shields said...

Pat ~ there are so many good buys to be had at the moment, I thank god I don't live nearer the shops or I'd be going hungry. I have identified the shoes I will wear when I can no longer manage heels: Ferragamo pumps, but I'll have to start saving pretty soon!

Kanani ~ I have never had as many as that! Wow, my niece would be so impressed.

Mary ~ I think climate has a huge influence, if it was drier here my flip-flops would get out more.

Conan ~ I love Birkenstocks and only wish they didn't make me look like I had deformed legs. Thinking about it, perhaps I do have deformed legs and that's why I need fancy shoes, they help disguise that fact.

savannah said...

can't speak, still sighing over those glorious shoes! (and beautiful floor) xoxoxo

(it's almost summer and all i plan on wearing are flip flops or sandals if i MUST dress up!)

Eryl Shields said...

Savannah ~ I used to love dressing up when I was younger (much) and would invent reasons to do so, now I still like the idea of it but find it tiresome when I have to do it. I had to don skirt and heels today for a meeting and was exhausted by the time I got home. I'm now safely back in jeans and flip-flops, bliss.

Glad you like the floor, it was a labour of love polishing it, now it has a few large chips in it again. XXX

Scarlet-Blue said...

I like Birkenstocks, and I have a really lovely pair, but I can't walk uphill in them. I can't walk uphill in UGGs either. Odd.
Sx

Leigh Russell said...

I usually wear purple shoes, Eryl, but I can't say shoes are very important to me, as long as they're comfortable. Some of the young staff at my school wear the most gorgeous creations, somehow managing to glide around elegantly in shoes I couldn't even stand upright in. They make Sarah Jessica Parker's feet look positively frumpy. I've no idea how they manage to walk around in them.

Eryl Shields said...

Scarlet ~ I've never tried UGGs, but I always think they look lovely and cosy. My problem is with walking down hill, I can't seem to do it in anything these days.

Leigh ~ colour is an interesting way to choose shoes, or anything else, do you remember that time (sometime during the late 80s I think) when everyone wore only black everything even jeans? If I was to choose shoes by colour it would probably be red.

I have nothing but admiration for the young: they can do anything with ease, and they always look beautiful doing it.

angryparsnip said...

I agree with what you wrote about shoes. . .
I remember when I wore a new great looking and comfortable shoe to a meeting... I felt great thought I looked great and the meeting went well. The power of shoes.
Love Love your choices, but alas, I can not wear a high heel anymore just somewhat smaller ones now for me ! and no flats just as bad...

Scarlet-Blue said...

I have given you an award...
Sx

Eryl Shields said...

AngryP ~ I find flats worse than heels, real flat-flats with thin soles, I hate too thin soles you feel every stone!

Scarlet ~ Ooh, coming right over!