shoes, glorious shoes

Ugh, you guys. I may have a problem. I acquired four new pairs of shoes yesterday.

In my defense, I only bought 2 pairs. See, I bought red and blue satin plum blossom China flats from Good Goth back in April. Because I now live a few thousand miles from the nearest Chinatown — New Orleans has many fine features, but it lacks a Chinatown. And I waited for them to arrive. And waited. And waited. And 4 months went by, and every time I remembered and thought “Gee, I oughta email and find out what the heck is going on”, I was always in my car or at work or at the grocery store, and I always forgot.

Anyway, I finally remembered last week and got back a reply that was basically OH SHIT OKAY HERE’S WHAT HAPPENED: they were out of stock when I ordered them, but they never told me that, and the authorization to charge my Visa expired after a couple of weeks. But they’re back in stock and we’re going to ship them priority mail and not charge you any shipping and handling OKAY SORRY.

And they arrived literally when I was at Stage buying MOAR SHOOZ. They were having a BOGO 1/2 off sale, on top of regular sale prices, and I need both a basic black pair of shoes (the only black pair I have is patent leather, which doesn’t always go with certain outfits, and is getting kind of old besides), and a navy pair. The black pair I found but a navy pair eluded me; but since it would only cost another $15 to buy a 2nd pair, I bought these ridiculously pretty sparkly silvery-purply-pink flats. They’re a brand called Chinese Laundry and I looked on their website and OMG NAVY BLUE SHOES AND I NEED THEM NOW. But I’m not paying $59 for a pair of shoes that, what with the near-daily rain in these parts, probably won’t last a year. I’ll just haunt their website and Stage until they go on sale.

See, I have SOME restraint.

I am also expecting these shoes in the mail next week, but they’re only replacing an identical pair that have gotten really scuffed up. I wore them a lot the last 6 months I lived in California, and I was on foot a lot because I kept having trouble with my bicycle.

The funny thing is that I didn’t give a crap about shoes for most of my adult life. I would have a black pair, a brown pair, and a pair of sandals for summer, and that was enough. Then something flicked on in my brain about a year and a half ago, and I turned into shoeholic stereotype. Except for where I refuse to wear heels higher than 1 1/2″ or pay more than $40 for a pair. And almost all of my shoes weren’t more than $20. When you have a lot the same pairs don’t get worn as often, so cheap shoes won’t fall apart as fast.


foot prettiness has become a higher priority since i moved south

I never used to pay much attention to my feet. They were just the things at the ends of my ankles that made me ambulatory. I discovered the embarassingly stereotypical love of shoes rather late in life, in my mid-30s. (But my shoes are all flats; I’d sooner bind my feet than wear high heels.)

I still didn’t pay much attention to how nice my feet looked under my shoes, though. Seemed kind of pointless, since I wore sandals maybe once a year. Except for the two weeks I spent here in Louisiana last August, I think the only time in the past 2 years that I wore them — not including drugstore-purchased flip flops donned only to take out the trash or retrieve the mail — was at my sister’s wedding. But then I moved down here permanently, and the weather started to get warm, and it occured to me that hey, I may not always be comfortable in socks and shoes.

So I embarked on a foot-prettifying campaign. My main weapon: the Tweezerman Callus Shaver & Rasp. Over the course of several nights, I removed what felt like a pound of dead, callused skin from my heel bottoms and balls of my feet.

Second prong of attack: Nail polish. Nothing radical, just a light pink. (Luckily I always kept my toenails neat, because raggedy corn chip nails gross me out.)

And today I delivered the coup de grace: Sandals. I have trouble finding sandals that fit properly. I guess I have a high arch, because often my feet won’t fit under the part that goes over your foot, even when the bottom is the exact right size. So no online shopping for me, sandals have to be tried on. The only options in town were Payless Shoe Source, who seem to go out of their way to stock only ugly, shoddy, uncomfortable footwear; and Stage, which had all three of Payless’s faults while also managing to be overpriced.

So I went to Target, like I probably should have to begin with, and got these sequiny thongs with a soft, corky wedge. I swear I saw the EXACT SAME SANDAL at Stage, only under a different brand name. Not only did they not fit me, they were about $30 more. I also got these strappy white sandals that are nothing out of the ordinary EXCEPT FOR THE SEAHORSE DETAIL WHAT

It’s weird, because I just bought a seahorse pin a couple weeks ago. Everything’s coming up seahorses.


outfit of the day: black, red & grey (cold weather version)

ootd black red grey cold weather version

I went to Target on Saturday and added a few long-sleeved shirts to my wardrobe. (And one purple shirt that turned out to be short-sleeved. Curses! My “I don’t try things on, I know my sizes” policy backfires on me occasionally. Oh well, it’s a nice color, I’ll find something to do with it.) I’ve worn this outfit before, here I’m just adding a shirt under the dress (and tights under the socks) for warmth. Everything else I already had, the pin is my black lizard.

purple suede button ballet flatsSpeaking of Target, I’ve had my eye on these shoes, waiting for them to go on sale, and it looks like this is my week: they went from $24.99 to $19.99.




mustard suede ballet flatscranberry ruffle flatsI also want these shoes, but I’m not going to pay full price for them. I just have to be patient, they’ll go on sale eventually.




brown wool sweater dressThis wool sweater dress I’ve had bookmarked for a few weeks is down to $37.99 from $49.99, but I bet it will go down more. However, if I wait too long they may run out of my size; plus it’s 100% wool so it’s probably not ever going to be as cheap as my cotton dresses. Unless I wait for final clearance, and then I’ll probably only have a couple weeks before it’s too warm to wear it. I have to ponder this.

outfit of the day: spring formal

ootd spring formal

The shoes I bought a few weeks ago at Target. It’s odd that I love them, because usually I hate fussy little bows on clothes. If I see underwear that has a fussy little bow (on bras they always stick them on the piece of cloth that connects the cups, which drives me batty), but that I otherwise like, I’ll buy it, then remove the bow with a seam ripper. But on the shoes, they work. The fact that they’re flat bows is part of it, I think.

Everything else I already owned.

Sock Dreams answered my email complaint about the socks before noon yesterday. They immediately mailed out the correct pair, and said the package would include an addressed, pre-stamped envelope. I just have to stick the wrong pair of socks in it, along with my receipt, and send them back. I like that they didn’t make me send the wrong pair back first (and pay for postage and packaging myself), that’s excellent customer service.

black toed shoes and black eyelet socks

pink cherry blossom furoshiki

blue cherry blossom pin

outfit of the day: brown & green

ootd brown and green

Halp, I’m missing the top half of my head!

This is the dress I bought on clearance for $15 from Target a couple weeks ago. I don’t know why I haven’t worn it until now.

Pros: Nice shade of green, just the right shape and length, loose enough to accomodate long-sleeved shirts underneath when it gets cold.

Cons: No pockets, not made of cotton. But here’s the thing: If the label didn’t say rayon/polyester, I would totally think this was cotton jersey. It feels like an old, comfortable t-shirt. It even breathes better than synthetics usually do — I can tell because my back didn’t get all sweaty on the walk to the bus stop.

So overall, I would say this was the best $15 I’ve spent all year.

The shoes I bought a couple weeks ago from Target, the socks I already had (also from Target), and the neckercheif I’ve had for years. I also meant to wear 2 Buddhist prayer bracelets, one green jade and one brown cat’s eye, but I totally forgot. Consarn it!

outfit of the day: grey & black

ootd grey and black

Trying out a different location in my office to shoot from. It’s kind of creepy-looking, no?

Anyway, this is a skirt I usually only wear in fall/winter, because it’s wool. But except for a few hot weekends here and there, this summer has been downright chilly. The expected high today is only 72 degrees! So I figured, what the hell, might as we rotate ’em (I have the same skirt in off-white) in as long as the weather permits.

The socks are from Sock Dreams, $10. The pin I bought a couple weeks ago from Thrift Town. The shoes are from Target, $16.99. They were the last pair of the batch I bought last week and I just got them last night. The skirt and blouse I already owned. It’s hard to tell in the photo, but the skirts isn’t black, it’s a dark charcoal. I like the A-line silhouette a lot. It has pockets, too.

grey and black tights and shoesThe shoes kind of blended in with the carpet in my office, so I put my feet up on the desk to take this photo! Also, OMG, I just realized that these shoes are totally the shoe version of the hat Aretha Franklin wore to Obama’s innauguration. Now I love them even more.

dragonfly pin black shirtIs my hair really that red? Maybe it’s just the lighting from the flash. Also: I may need a stronger dandruff shampoo. At least if I’m going to wear a black shirt. *blush*

outfit of the day: smoky pastels

ootd smoky pastels

I hate what I think of as “Easter pastels”: sickly greens, blues, and pinks. But pastels that have a grey base are awesome. They are pastels for adults, not children.

The socks are from Sock Dreams, $8. I used to never wear vertically striped socks, because I’m so anal that it bugged me that I could never get or keep the lines perfectly straight. I’m trying to get over such behavior. The shoes were on clearance at Target for $12.48. The pin is the same blue crystal cherry blossom one I wore last week. And the neckerchief I’ve had for years.

I know it seems like I’m spending a lot on shoes lately, but a) I really needed them, b) they were almost all on clearance and less than $15 (and ALL of them were under $20), and c) I consider them an investment. I had, literally, just 2 pairs of shoes. One was brown and could only be worn with brown-based outfits. The other was made of ribbons of several different colors and, while they were cute, went with almost nothing I owned.

Like any other lifestyle change/hobby, there’s an initial investment before you start saving money. At least that’s my justification for buying nearly a dozen pairs of shoes in the past 6 weeks.

pastel checkered scarf

lilac socks and silver shoes

outfit of the day: autumn in july

ootd autumn in july

I have no idea why I can’t seem to take in-focus photos lately. The batteries are fairly new, and I haven’t dropped my camera lately. Grr.

Anyway. The shoes are part of the batch I bought last week from Target (online), and which have been arriving one by one at my house. It’s like Christmas every night! They were $16.99. I love the thin double line of bronze leather that runs around the tops of these shoes. I didn’t even notice that on the website, so when I got them it was like receiving an even better pair of shoes than I thought I was getting.

The scarf I bought last month at Target (in store) for about $10. It makes a good belt and breaks up the line of the dress nicely, so it’s not so sack-like.

Everything else I already owned. The rosary I bought a few years ago at the Mission San Jose gift shop, it’s one of my favorites. The beads are wood and the centerpiece is pewter. I think technically it’s a man’s rosary, but who cares? I’m an atheist who loves Catholic iconography; the fact that I’m a woman wearing a man’s rosary is the least weird thing about it.

brown and bronze scarf belt

orange headband

tan shoes, brown and orange socks

wooden bead rosary

outfit of the day: cherry blossoms

ootd cherry blossoms

The socks are from Sock Dreams, $7. The shoes are from Target, I bought them online and got them just last night, $16.99. The furoshiki is from Daiso, $1.50. And the pin is from Thrift Town, it was about $5. Wearing both the pin AND the furoshiki might be a bit overboard, but how could I resist?!

pink cherry blossom furoshiki

blue cherry blossom pin

cherry blossom socks

brown nailhead shoes

The socks really pull the outfit together, because they contain all the colors — blue, brown, and pink — of the individual accessories.

outfit of the day: blue & black blossoms

ootd blue and black blossoms

Sorry about the cheesy pose. I took a second one where I had my head at a more normal angle, but it was blurry.

Blue and black was my favorite color combo when I was a tween (although we didn’t use that word back then). Then for a long time I hated it, I think because it screamed REAGAN ERA! to me. But recently I’ve started to enjoy them together again.

The socks are from Sock Dreams ($7), the shoes from Target ($14.99), and the tie from Daiso ($3). You can’t see it in the photo, but the tie has lighter blue polka dots. It’s actually the same deep blue as my shoes, but photographed kind of purple for some reason.

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