Wardrobe Essentials: The Five Pairs of Shoes I Couldn’t Live Without
Sometimes people ask me which of my many, many, too many pairs of shoes I couldn’t possibly live without. No, seriously, they do: they ask me that. Once you commit yourself to documenting everything you do, wear and buy on the internet, you get ALL kinds of questions, trust me.
Anyway, people ask me about my shoes. And normally when they do, I’m all, “Pshaw! AS IF I could possibly choose a favourite! Why, it would be like Sophie’s Choice! Only, you know, not even remotely like Sophie’s Choice. I feel like I’ve probably just offended someone now by comparing my shoes to THAT book, so I’m going to quickly move on and hope you didn’t notice…)
Like I say, NORMALLY when people ask about the shoes, I flip my hair and say I can’t possibly answer. Lately, though, I realised that I most definitely CAN, actually: If I had to choose just one pair of shoes to keep, it would totally be these nude pumps:
If you’ve looked at my outfit photos, like, ever, this will come as no surprise to you. I wear these shoes all the damn time. Honestly, most of the time, I don’t really want to wear anything else (Which actually bothers me a little, because I have all these shoes, and I feel like I should be doing them justice. Also, shoes are my THING. I have an entire blog dedicated to them, for God’s sake. But lately, all I want to wear as these ones.
I’m not going to pick just one pair of shoes, though. Because that’s just unrealistic, isn’t it? It would never happen. No one is ever going to tell me I can only have one pair of shoes, and that I’ll have to wear them now for the rest of my life. No, they’d be much more likely to tell me I could pick five pairs. Five is a much more reasonable number, don’t you think? So if that imaginary person asked me to choose just five pairs of shoes to wear forever more, a) I’d hate that person, seriously. Because who DOES that? And b) here are the five pairs of shoes I’d (grudgingly) choose, working from left-right…
01. Black shoe boots
These were rarely off my feet last winter: in fact, I wore them so often that although they’re still going strong, I actually bought a back-up pair, just in case. They’re not the most exciting shoes to look at, unfortunately, but then again, boots rarely are, as far as I’m concerned. They ARE practical, though, and when it comes to winter footwear, I tend to favour shoe boots (which I WILL NOT call “shoots”, and you can’t make me), purely because I find them so much easier to wear. Because they hug the foot so closely, they don’t have all of the calf-width issues that come with knee-high boots, and you don’t have to deal with the gaping ankle you get with ankle boots (which never fail to make my feet look at least five times bigger than they really are…) either. These work with skirts/dresses and with trousers, so that’s a good enough reason for me to wear them until they fall apart, basically. (Mine were c/o Spartoo, and you can find them here.)
02. Nude pumps
As I said above, these “nude” high heels would probably be my number one choice: I know a lot of people would describe them as boring, but I find I’m OK with that. Mine are by Christian Louboutin, and they really do work with just about anything, which is why I wear them so often – and would probably wear them even MORE often if I didn’t feel an obligation to the rest of the shoes…
03. Gold italics
Gold is one of my favourite shoe colours, because, like “nude” (I feel I have to put that in inverted commas, by the way, because I know they wouldn’t be “nude” on everyone. Christian Louboutin actually makes a whole range of nude shades, though, so there should be something to suit everyone…) it goes with most other colours, so it’s pretty versatile – which will be handy, given that I’ll have to wear them forever in this totally bizarre, fictional scenario, huh?
I also love wedges, and swear by them in the summer: they’re usually my go-to holiday shoes because I find them really easy to walk in (and often more comfortable than flats, thanks to the arch support), but they still have a bit of height – which you need when you have legs as short as mine are. [Mine are by Michael Kors, and seem to be sold out, but there are usually tons of gold wedges around every summer. I wore these constantly during our recent holiday, and they were super-comfortable, even on days when I walked miles – or felt like it, anyway.]
04. Fun peep toes
I couldn’t not include these Vivienne Westwood/Melissa peep toes, could I? They’re a few years old now, and probably one of the most frequently-worn shoes in my collection, as anyone who’s looked through my outfits archive will be able to testify! These are another pair of shoes that are much more versatile than the words “cherry-front jelly shoes” would suggest, and they give a bit of a pin-up inspired twist to whatever you wear them with. I have already started to worry about how I’ll cope when they finally give up the ghost…
05. Red flats
Totally flat shoes aren’t very flattering on me because of the whole “long torso, short legs” situation, but they do come in handy, and I’ve been wearing them a lot more often recently: I find them an easy way to dress-down some of my less practical outfits, and, of course, they’re easy to walk in. Red is almost a neutral in my wardrobe, because I wear a lot of navy, white and black, and red works really well with all of them. These flats were from Zara about a year or more ago: they’ve lasted pretty well, but I did recently buy some replacements from Dorothy Perkins, because I know they’re not going to last forever.
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Obviously these five pairs of shoes wouldn’t work for every possible situation – you’ll notice I haven’t included any exercise shoes, for instance, or boots that would work for snow/very cold weather. If you’re going to force me to wear just five pairs of shoes for the rest of my life, though, I think the least you can do is allow me to move somewhere hot, and never do another minute of exercise again, don’t you?
(I’m joking: I was thinking about style rather than practicality here, as always, so now you can tell me which five pairs of shoes YOU’D pick, without having to worry about what happens if it snows…)
[Related: How to walk in high heels]