Back when I was a young, starry-eyed girl graduating from college, I made a promise to myself that my first paycheck would go toward my very first pair of designer shoes. I had worked hard in school, landed a great job, had a bonus tacked on, and I was going to reward myself!
Post for shoe lovers ahead! / Photo from Keropok Man
Well, as it turned out my first paycheck went to cover my credit card bills that I had racked up gallivanting around Disney World finishing up my College Program with BM M. OK, that’s plenty rewarding enough. I wasn’t too hard on myself.
The 11th drink—margaritas in Mexico—of our EPCOT “Drink around the World”! Matching T-shirts FTW. / Personal photo
So I knew that the wedding would be the perfect excuse reason to buy some amazing designer shoes! I’m not spending much on shopping these days, so I figured I could splurge a bit on the perfect pair. But with so many brands now available to me, I got a little overwhelmed trying to narrow them all down!
I scoped out all kinds of brands, putting my price cap around $600. Yikes…that looks bad when I type that out. Let’s move on.
I knew I wanted heels, not white or satin, reasonable height (for me, that’s under four inches), peep toe or sandal-like, and some kind of embellishment.
I’m a tall girl, so I don’t like towering above everyone else—including Sphinx (we’re about the same height). Over the years, I’ve gotten used to posing with heels on so that I don’t look like an Amazon woman with him, but let’s not push our luck here.
An early inspiration photo / Image via Wedding Places
While I like the colored shoe trend, I just knew that I was too picky for it. I’d be too particular about finding the perfect color and that would limit me in choice of design and comfort. I had been scoping out Kate Spade, Badgely Mischka, and Manolo Blahnik to see if the perfect pair of purple shoes popped up—being unsuccessful, I hopped off the colored shoe bandwagon.
I did like the idea of gold, silver, or blush colored shoes.
Kate Spade platform…probably a little too “satiny” for my tastes, but I liked the security of the ankle strap! / Image via Lyst
Kate Spade Clarice—love the glittered heel! I couldn’t see this anywhere in person, though. / Image via KateSpade.com
Well, the oh-so-tragic part of this story is that New Orleans has a severe lack of accessibility of high end designers. We have one Saks store. They have a small Kate Spade section, none to speak of for Badgley, and a decent selection from Jimmy Choo. And unfortunately, most of the bridal line* for Jimmy Choo isn’t sold in Saks. Insert weeping bride.
I took a trip with Momma Pyramid and Nanny to Saks one afternoon, and I did get to take some pairs for a walk. FYI, Nanny is used in Cajun as the word for godmother, so that’s what I’ll call her here. Nanny is a big fan of Choos, so we focused on those. I tried on some Manolos too, but for the price they weren’t doing it for me.
Can’t seem to find this d’orsay pair online anymore. The heel height was nice.
Shoe on the right is a JC slingback platform. / Image via Jimmy Choo
I did love the metallic pattern of the pumps, but I wasn’t sold on either of these styles. The d’orsay might become uncomfortable over hours, and the slingback was too casual for me. And with that I had exhausted my top shoe choices in the area.
Fortunately, I had a business trip to Houston in April, and I braved the Galleria on a Friday night to try on some of the lovely shoes that I had been eyeing up online. I learned a few things in that trip:
1. As much as I love Kate Spade everything, I wasn’t loving any of their shoes enough to choose them.
2. It turns out I have an oddly shaped foot and can’t wear a Badgley Mischka pair as shown above. The front part of my foot was just too wide for that front area, even going up like two sizes. Guess who feels like an ogre?
I also tried on Jimmy Choos in the boutique. The sales associate opened the bridal shoe drawer and angels sang! The Jimmy Choo Luna became a front runner, and it was not available at Saks.
Foot modeling Jimmy Choo Luna at Nordstrom. I’ll keep my day job. / Personal photo
Houston Learning # 3: The DSW and Marshalls right across the street from the Galleria have the BEST selection. I found this pair of Badgleys for $40 on clearance! Purple is a wedding color, so I figure I can wear these for a shower or the rehearsal dinner.
And no weird foot compatibility problems in this one!
So I was narrowing in on my search. But the final part of my shoe journey has a bit more adventure to it! I’ll share that next time!
Are you shoe obsessed too? Did you find shoe shopping to be way harder than it should have been?
*I am strongly of the opinion that there is not such thing as a “wedding shoe.” OK, they ARE shoes that you wear on your wedding, but I think the categorizing of it is unnecessary. But of course, the shoe I ultimately picked IS what they call a bridal shoe. Oops, marketing success. My point is if you’re having trouble finding a shoe you really like, spread your search out past the “bridal” tab.