Sunday, February 19, 2006


Welcome to ShoeSense, the shoe blog with a feminist touch.

I LOVE shoes (like, what woman doesn't?). I've developed an obsession with them, and as with any obsession, I think there's no better way of dealing with it than to vent about it anonymously to the whole wide world, limited as it is for this first post to the 2 or 3 lonely spammers in search of new victims.

My eternal dilemma, of course, like any woman who aspires to have taste and sensibility, is: how do I wear gorgeous shoes that do not throw me into the ninth circle of hellish pain after the first nine or ninety or nine hundred steps for that matter? I used to like wearing high heel shoes, but that was in a place where I had to drive all the time, walk from the parking lot to the office, and sit at the desk or stand around the water cooler for most of the time. Since moving to a walkers' city and giving up my car--surprise, surprise! Walking even for 10 blocks to a bar in my 3" Dries van Noten heels, comfortable as I previously thought them to be, was like methodical, well-paced torture.

Alas, this is, to quote the Master Manolo, the Holy Grail of shoes. Designers do not care, ladies, about the comfort of our feet, about the fact that women, too, like to be mobile AND look good at the same time. So while I recoil in horror at the sight of Birkenstocks (please! enough already!), I now also shudder at the sight of dainty 4" Jimmy Choo or Louboutin stilleto heels. As beautiful as they are, they belong on display, not on real women's feet. Unless, of course, you confine said women to a sofa or bed while they wear the shoes, which of course, denies the ultimate purpose of all footwear and reduces women to museum objects as well. Or sex objects. You get the picture.

High heels, especially stilettos, are supposed to make your legs look slimmer, your butt perkier, your sillhouette more elegant, your appeal sexier. They are also, for the most part, uncomfortable, painful, constricting, and create debilitating back problems with prolonged use. They do a good job in objectifying women because of their enduring association with "sexiness." I'm pretty sure that's a recent development, historically speaking. I will have to consult a book about that. Of course, there is the rare shoe that has the high heel--usually chunky--and still manages to remain comfortable for a while. I've heard that about Taryn Rose shoes, and believe me, I will put it to the test some time soon.

I still believe that it is not impossible to have stylish AND comfortable shoes at the same time. If some people think we can't, well, I can only
blame it on the patriarchy.

So here are my rules for footwear:

1) Beautiful. It was hard to put this first, but really, if a shoe isn't beautiful, what's the point of wearing it at all. Of course, this is a highly subjective feature, and I may not be the ultimate arbiter elegantiae, but for the sake of argument let's define beautiful shoes as shoes that are at the same time stylish and aesthetically pleasing (I believe there is a subtle difference there, but the two will overlap most of the time).

2) Comfortable. Let's define comfortable as "able to walk at least 1 mile at a time or standing/dancing 30 minutes at a time without feeling tired or feeling pain or getting blisters." How's that for starters? This definition may evolve, of course, but really: comfortable is comfortable. You know what I mean.

3) On sale. That's my own subjective bias of a woman still on a budget. And let's face it, who doesn't love a sale? Rarely should one pay the sticker price for a shoe, I believe. I am on a constant lookout for bargains, and found both ebay and particularly Zappos to be of great help in that domain. I will post here my finds, ok?

This blog is therefore devoted to find such examples of sensible and tasteful footwear. Let the journey begin!


At 6:19 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I would like to send the editor an email to propose a review of a new product that is ideally suited for your blog. I just cant seem to find contact info.

Please respond to: alan at weinkrantz dot com

At 7:03 PM, Blogger Scarpediem said...

Hi--I'm open to suggestions at shoesense at gmail dot com, or at other various accounts I give out liberally to whoever thinks they found appropriate incarnations of the Holy Grail of shoes!

At 8:01 AM, Anonymous hifashionloprice said...

I'd like to invite you to check out our store Hi Fashion Lo Price which may qualify as the Holy Grail of shoe bargains.

We are, hands down, the lowest price online vendor of shoes. Our prices don't allow a large advertising budget but the word is spreading.

Love your blog and will be coming back often.

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