Monday, April 12, 2010

Make Believe Monday | Vertical Illusions

As a borderline petite gal (I'm 5'4" and I'm sticking to it, although petite-size pants are almost always too short), heels are my go-to for weekday footwear. And while I am taking a break from buying new clothes for the next year, I am allowing myself to really take a look at building up a solid shoe wardrobe. As shopoholic as I have been in the past, I've never really paid as much attention to my footwear as I have my clothing, and it has sometimes put a damper on what my outfits could be.

Every working gal should have some shoe basics: a classic black pump, a classic brown pump, a peep-toe, and a Mary Jane. The last two can be in brown or black, and the entire shoe collection in a variety of heel heights and toe-shapes.  Add on an unlimited amount of fun extras, and you're ready to go.

I've got the gamut *pretty much* covered, but one thing I'm definitely on the market for this year is a pair of nude-colored pumps. They do wonders for elongating the leg when worn with a skirt or dress, and are versatile enough to be worn with both your brown and black staples.  My requirements: around 3" heel (my comfort zone), a barely-rounded, still-slightly-pointed toe (I have too many pointy-toed shoes already and normal round-toes are not flattering for my foot), preferably leather upper, and under $90.  It's a tall order, but I like a challenge.

As I've been perusing the plethora of free-shipping-and-return shoe sites (one of the most useful Internet services I've ever come across), this one pair has been my Holy Grail of sorts.

Totally out of budget, but the search is on.

Front runners:

ranco Sarto Napoli

Nine West Rocha

A slightly shorter, thicker heel for those who do lots of walking is available from Bandolino as well.

Still mulling it over in my head but chances are one of the two beauties above will be making its way toward my apartment this week (with a free return if necessary of course!). The Nine West feels a bit casual for the office with its slightly rugged finish and wooden heel, but I know the brand fits my foot well and will last me at least the next 5 or more years.  I've never had Franco Sartos but the pretty patent and classic shape could make the higher price tag worth it.

Some notes on nude pumps:
  • Lest the name fool you, nude pumps really aren't usually the same color as your skin (as nude implies).  And that's okay.  Anything that hints at skin-colored that might be mistaken from 100 feet away could do.  Usually this does not include print or snakeskin textures.
  • Toe-shape is a personal preference.  While I love the look of round-toe pumps, whenever I put them on I feel awkward, which I'm sure leads to me acting more awkward.  Follow your instinct on what makes you feel good.  But make sure you revisit even your most staunch no-gos every few years--you never know how your perception may have changed!

I already know it will go great with my khaki-colored pencil skirt (seen here), and any of a number of dresses and shifts for summer (which have yet to be whipped out as Northern California gets yet another spring storm).

What are your shoe-collection standbys?  What do you hope to add this season to round your stash out?


  1. oh, btw, i like the nine west nude heels. plus, if your slacks are the right length, you wouldn't see the more casual wood tone heel anyway, right?

  2. I would also suggest a nice dressy flat in a jewel tone for those of us who don't walk well in heels and do a lot of walking at work. Also, a knee length black or brown boot is good for skirts and can go under slacks and in my experience, tend to be more comfortable than the average heel.

  3. How could I forget about flats? Argh. Well, they're a subject I can write another entire post on.

  4. Hmm...I was thinking nude-colored heels more for skirt wear (like extended legs...ooh la la). But I think I'm going to hold off and scour some stores for sales instead of rushing to buy some online. :)

  5. Ok, stumbled on this post on the same topic with lots of other options. LOVE!


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