Way back during Ways to Wear It, the subject of shoes came up – specifically, how do you choose what shoes to wear?  To be honest, I personally don’t premeditate my outfits much; I usually decide what to wear while I’m brushing my teeth in the morning.  #veryseriousfashionblogger  This means that if I can make my shoe choice in the spur of the moment, so can you with 4 quick questions:

1. What kind of shoes do I want/need today?

Since I started thrifting, my shoe collection has, eh hem, grown exponentially and I have a lot to choose from.  That, coupled with the fact that nowadays just about any shoe goes with just about any outfit, means the choice is indeed more about what I want – what will feel right and spark joy – than any particular style “rules.”  You can wear heels with joggers, ankle boots with skirts or leggings, sneakers with dress pants… anything goes.  Sometimes there’s no logical explanation why one pair of shoes feels “wrong” and another feels right, but you don’t need to understand, you just need to go with your gut!

Case in point, today I initially had on the green shoes you'll see later but they just didn't *feel* right so I changed into ankle boots and immediately felt better.  This is what I actually wore today!
Case in point, today I initially had on the green shoes you’ll see later but they just didn’t *feel* right so I changed into ankle boots and immediately felt better. This is what I actually wore today!

Most of us also need to consider what the day holds.  Some days, I accompany preschoolers to gym class and have to RUN LAPS as a warm up which was my suggestion so I can’t very well sit out.  I need to make sure I can run in whatever shoes I choose those days.  Most of us consider comfort as the biggest factor when choosing shoes.  I personally have pain almost all the time no matter the shoes due to my bunions the size of France and I’m so used to it, I don’t let it dictate my shoe choices.  We’ll see what happens after my surgery next week but hopefully I will be able to continue to wear all my faves *without* pain, eventually!

I didn't have to, but I CAN run in these Clarks booties!
I didn’t have to today, but I CAN run in these Clarks booties!
After work, I played shoe-dress-up and paid my kids wrestling cards to take pics of me in this $6.50 dress with different shoes.
After work, I played shoe-dress-up and paid my kids wrestling cards to take pics of me in this $6.50 dress with different shoes.  #modernmotherhood

2. Matchy, contrasty or neutral?

Most of us are pretty comfortable reaching for standard black flats, the ultimate neutral shoe…

Frye flats $9.10
Frye flats $9.10
It's not a "bad" look
It’s not a “bad” look, and accessories help to spice it up…
It's not a "bad" look, and accessories help to spice it up, but it's not very interesting.
but it’s not very interesting even with a background Berner…

Black and brown shoes are the standard neutrals and I do believe women should have some of each BUT keep your eye out for metallic shoes as a way-more-interesting neutral!

rustdressmetallicshoes

Thrifted accessories, thrifted shoes.
Thrifted accessories, thrifted shoes.
Which do you prefer - black or metallic as neutral?
Which do you prefer – black or metallic as neutral?

Right next to default black in popularity is the tendency to choose matchy-matchy shoes – and there isn’t anything wrong with that!

These Faryl Robin shoes have trim that exactly matches my dress.  #winning
These Faryl Robin shoes have trim that exactly matches my dress. #winning
Keeping my accessories in the same colour family...
Keeping my accessories in the same colour family…

matchyshoesrustdress

Matchy is fine, but an under-utilized styling trick is pairing CONTRASTING pieces together!

Orange and blue - opposites attract!
Orange and blue – opposites attract!
By adding blue accessories, I am contrasty AND matchy at the same time!
By adding blue accessories, I am contrasty AND matchy at the same time!
I LOOOOOVVVVEE this!
I LOOOOOVVVVEE this one million times more than plain black flats!
Here's another contrasty option - green shoes!
Here’s another contrasty option!
The scarf has green in it, so once again, the shoes are contrasty but the outfit is matchy.  #blowingyourminds
The scarf has green in it, so once again, the shoes are contrasty but the outfit is matchy. #blowingyourminds

greenshoesrustdress
3. What accessories can I use to “finish” my look?

With each shoe option, I felt compelled to change my accessories to achieve a cohesive look – to create the vibe!  I think the green shoes didn’t work with my first outfit because the accessories didn’t jive (and I didn’t have time to change them).  But the proper scarf and bracelet changed the game!  Accessories go a long way in helping you look put together from head to toe!

4. Do I want a “shoe spotlight”?

Sometimes, you just want to wear a special pair of shoes regardless of the rest of your outfit or the occasion and that, ladies, is totally legit.

Sometimes Mama just wants to wear her irridescent Stuart Weitzman slides.
Sometimes Mama just wants to wear her iridescent Stuart Weitzman slides.

When you wear a spotlight shoe, you just need to OWN IT.

statementshoes
Yeah, my dress is basically a socially appropriate nightgown, but I still want to wear my fancy shoes, so there.
Which pair of shoes comes to mind for you when I say, "shoe spotlight?"
Which pair of shoes comes to mind for you when I say, “shoe spotlight?”

I think maybe that’s how pumps with joggers came to be – somewhere, someone had her sweatpants on and wanted to wear heels, so she just werked it (I can’t do it) worked it with flair!

There you have it – 4 easy questions to help you choose your shoes!  A couple other quick things to consider:

  • buy the best quality shoes you can afford and YES you can find excellent quality shoes thrifted
  • if all you wear are ______ (loafers, sneakers, flats, pumps, whatever), strive to have a few different colours and/or styles of that shoe

 

Now you want to go thrifting for shoes, don’t you?!!

4 Comments

  1. Sandra Couture Reply

    My favorites are the metallic sandals (they’re gorgeous like you have Greek goddess feet) and I LOVE the cobalt blue polka dot ballet flats. I may, or may not, have similar shoes in my collection. U0001f61c

  2. Cathy Pattison Reply

    I couldn’t live without my multiple pairs of Fly London shoes. Most importantly, don’t ever, ever, ever wear shoes that don’t fit. You want happy, pain free feet to carry you throughout your life. Start with getting your kids well fitting shoes. they will thank you later in life.

  3. Uh oh, and here I sit with basic boring black ballet flats today. Ooops.

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