Category Archives: Shoe Addict

Shoes – the Down and Dirty About ‘Um, by Cathy Berger

There are different degrees of shoe-awareness. There are people with “shoe fetishes” – obsessive collectors with Imelda Marcos-like stockpiles that fill closets. There are the Carrie Bradshaws of the world, patrons of Manolo Blahnik and Jimmy Choo‘s high fashion. There are those who seek out form over function and make comfort their main priority over style. Then there are those who never know the right shoe for the occasion.

There are different degrees of shoe-awareness. There are people with “shoe fetishes”, there are the Carrie Bradshaws of the world, there are those who seek out form over function and then there are those who never know the right shoe for the occasion.

I was recently at a reception, and the honoree’s shoes had really seen better days – they needed a scrubbing, a polish and a resoling. I can’t tell you how many people I overheard talking about it. Both men and women noticed. It isn’t just a cliché –shoes really can “make or break the man”.  Sadly, sometimes, we do need to send a favorite pair to shoe heaven.

Why is footwear perplexing? Any pair will provide basic protection from the mean streets of the world. But which to wear can convey so much about ourselves. Even when times are tough, spending a little more on a classically designed, well-made pair of shoes not only shows you are practical (real leather, sturdy stitching, and quality soles last longer and can be repaired over time at a fraction of the original price) but they tend to fit better and be more comfy. Remember this: A good pair will outlast almost any other item in your closet, especially true for high quality men’s shoes and classic women’s designs, like basic pumps, flats, and loafers.

But, some of you may be protesting, what about fashion? What about sexy stilettos, platforms with embellishments, and pointy-toe boots with kitten heels? Shoes are an important fashion statement, and we all know, it often takes some discomfort to look good.

Have you ever seen pictures of women who participated in the ancient Chinese custom of foot binding? It’s extreme, but it’s the result of, for lack of a better term, a “fashion craze” that went overboard. Even today, sitting in a pedicure chair, you can see the evidence of women (and men) who are victims of ill-fitting shoes. Pointy-toe styles cram toes into narrow spaces and can cause ugly, painful foot afflictions down the road. Wearing a shoe that fits well is so important, no matter the trend du jour.

If the proper shoe truly makes the person, then it’s important to wear the right shoe for the right occasion which looks good and feels good. It’s an obvious way to ramp up your social and professional image. When you get right down to it, out of anything you wear, shoes are the clearly the most important element of your style.~

6 Must-Have Men’s Shoes | Color Ahead Fall/Winter 2012-13

1. CaptoeConservative but elegant even in a casual format. Finally – what every man might secretly desire. Because what well-dressed man doesn’t love shoes? Blacksuede cap toe from Mark McNairy, $398.00

2. Monk Strap One step beyond the one thick strap you usually find on a monk-strap loafer, this modern version has two thin straps with a lighter buckles.
Choose this in the morning when you feel like making an understated, stylish statement. Leather shoes ($1,260) by A. Testoni.

3. Wing tip – Most high-powered execs have got a need for them Not all wing tips look right with suits. But this pair, with its closed-lace construction, slim leather soles, and rich brown patina, could hold its own with most any two OR three-piece suit.
Leather shoes ($595) by Fratelli Rossetti.

4. Oxford Lace-upCasual dress down days for sport coats with slacks You can’t get much more elegant than a finely made black lace-up, particularly when the toe looks like this: not too pointy, not too round, and not remotely square.

5. Loafer – Say no to laces. Face it; some days just call for no ties. A hand-rubbed, skillfully shaped pair of do-I know-what-to-wear-or-what loafers like these Berlutis are just the kind of shoes that command respect. Even at the office. Leather loafer ($760) by Berluti.

6. the Derby – For Every Day: The Shoe You Can Wear Anywhere. In dreams there’s one pair of shoes you can wear everywhere, all the time, from tuxedos to track pants. We’ve looked, and honestly, dreams are just that. What we have found though, is one pair of shoes that you can wear almost everywhere: these chestnut-brown derbies from the undisputed champion of Swiss footwear, Bally. Leather Scribe derbies ($725) by Bally

Color Rules: You need 3 different color shoes- dark brown, black and cordovan. Want to focus on one? Dark brown owes its versatility to a few key features: their rich color (a dark brown beats black for versatility any day), their knack for blending well and being less obvious than black, and their range in hue which reaches farther and wider than pretty much anything else around. Consider them the skeleton key to your closet and wear them with care. Because most other colors aren’t nearly as versatile. Relax on the weekend and on a casual evening with a light shade of brown and for an elegant night, or an important meeting, a dark chocolate-ly shade.