How nice it would be to have the perfect pair of shoes for every outfit? I would love to have a pair of flats, pumps, wedges, boots, kittens and booties in every shade to effortlessly match my handbag, earrings or belt for all occasions from casual to office to party… but sadly I live in the real world where paying bills and groceries (usually) comes before shoes.
When shoe shopping on a budget it is sometimes easy to get side-tracked. Pretty pumps in eye-catching hues, impractical heights, satin, feathers, bows are all danger signs. I have often come home from a trip to buy ‘work shoes’ with a pair of sky-high heels in a vibrant colour.
Are they breath-taking? Yes.
Do I ever wear them? No.
They clutter my wardrobe, looking beautiful and useless, a constant reminder to my husband that I should not be trusted with a credit card during sale season.
The truth is with some practical direction most of us could save money on the basics of our shoe collection. Those of us on a fashion budget should consider, if we can only wrangle five new pairs this season, which shoes are an absolute necessity.
Black heels – from work to evening a great pair of black heels is the staple of every woman’s wardrobe. A good black heel can be the perfect accompaniment to a blazer for work, a dress for evening or jeans on the weekend. They might not be exciting but they will take you anywhere and match with almost anything. There are some things to consider. Firstly, can you walk in heels without a little wobble? A woman tripping down the street in too tall heels is not attractive. Opt for a pair that suit your ability to move confidently. A wedge or a kitten heel gives you a little height and femininity without the wobble.
Ballet flats look great with jeans, skirts and dresses. The ballet flat is a tired foot’s best friend, ridiculously cute and they can comfortably go from office to evening when paired with the right outfit. A pair of flats in black are multipurpose and go well in the office but can be a little boring, choose a pair with cute detailing. You are better to invest in a good leather pair, or at least avoid fabric as these often don’t survive their first outing on a wet day.
When you find a pair of good boots you will never want to wear anything else. Comfortable, warm, edgy, stylish and they look good with a skirt or balance out skinny jeans. The length and style should really depend on your body type. Consider what outfits you may wear your boots with as certain styles, you want to avoid looking like you are a stripper or in the military. Get a colour, which matches with the handbag you use most regularly.
No one should ever wear gym shoes with jeans. EVER. There are times when it is necessary to wear something sportier. Opt for a canvas sports shoe or casual sneaker. These are not the shoes you wear for jogging or athletics. If you are unsure check out the feet of the nearest under 20 and take notes, sporty not sports.
The fifth pair of shoes in ever woman’s wardrobe should really depend on her specific needs. If a you spend a lot of time in corporate situations or going out in the evening a good nude coloured heel would be an asset as it blends with a range of colours and looks sleek. If not a fun pair of ballet flats in a fun pattern or a cute ankle boots should round out your collection.