Shoe Money

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High heels are interesting. I meet clients who love heels and wear them every day, in fact they say that heels are more comfortable than flats.

I meet clients who never wear heels, no matter what the occasion, they are just too uncomfortable for them.

I like both heels and flats. Heels work better for me with longer skirts and I feel more dressed up in a pair of heels. But I’m a mum and need to run around after my kids. Also, when I go shopping with a client, I walk an average of 4000 steps (I’ve worn a pedometer a few times to calculate this) during a 2 hour shopping trip, so flats are a must for me when doing this.

I may wear heels one day, but the next will definitely be a flats day. I love the look of heels, and pointy toes, but won’t wear them day after day so that my feet can relax and I don’t exacerbate my bunions and make them grow any larger. If I know that I’ll need to stop off at the supermarket on my way home from work, I’ll keep a pair of flats in the car I can slip on to walk around the shops in so my feet don’t start screaming at me. I love heels, but they are for sitting down in for me (unless they’re less than 1.5″ high).

When I get home I immediately take off my shoes. In summer I love to wander around barefoot, but in winter end up in ugg boots to keep my tootsies warm.

How to love everything in your wardrobe

I own around 70 pairs of shoes and boots. They are all different colours, though I have more black shoes than any other colour. I live in a climate that needs very different shoes summer to winter, so there are around 35 that are in rotation at one time. Of these I probably wear 15 pairs a lot, 12 pairs frequently, and the others are dress or occasion shoes that only get a look in with the right clothes for the appropriate occasion.

I never wear the same pair of shoes or boots 2 days running – after advice from my doctor that each shoe rubs your foot in a certain place, thus creating bunions, corns and calluses over time. By rotating shoes my feet are not irritated in the same places every day, my shoes get to dry out completely between each wearing and last longer, and I get to dress up and down my outfits depending on shoe choice.

Shoe Money

Why influences your choice of shoe? How important is comfort? Is it about the look? Is it the brand? The colour? What makes you buy a pair of shoes? How many shoes do you own? Do you wear the same 3 pairs of shoes all the time or wear all your collection?

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25 Comments

  • I would have a lot more pairs of shoes than I do (maybe 10?), if it were easier to find shoes that fit well, look good and are comfortable. (Because I am a 7 1/2 and half sizes are so rare in the shops here in NZ.) Of those shoes I own, only 3 pairs have heels – and I hardly ever wear 'em. I have yet to find a pair of heels that are comfortable enough to walk a couple of km's in.

    Hey I love your blog by the way. I can always do with style advice.

  • Violet – thanks so much for the comment. I don't think I'd ever find a pair of heels I could wear and walk for a couple of Kms, I'd definitely only wear flats for that. Heels get worn when I'm driving somewhere and then know I'm going to be either just standing still (for not too long) or sitting down (like dinner!).

  • I have about 50 pairs. Most I wear to work summer and winter. Most are court shoes. I wear flats (old lady shoes with orthotics) if I am out shopping or the like. I love heels but can't walk in them for long – perfect for my desk job 🙂

  • I think I own close to 100 pairs now (I need to cut back!), but maybe only 10 of those are in rotation at any given time. I also live in a region where the shoes in rotation depend heavily on the weather/season, so right now I'm wearing many of my flats and sandals as it's summer here. I love heels, but much of my commute to work involves walking and so I gravitate toward wearing flats or sandals most of the time. If I ever move back to my hometown, I can go back to wearing heels because I'll be driving more often and not walking as much.

  • I haven't counted in a while, but have well over 50 pairs and rotate them at all times. Like you, I never wear the same pair two days in a row.

    After years of nothing but flats and wedges, I'm a convert to heels. Actually having a hard time finding a pair of flat shoes that I like … which is more than a little ridiculous.

  • I have somewhere between 70 and 100 pairs and they are in rotation seasonally, and then constantly within each season. I alternate between heels and flats, and cannot walk great distances in heels.

    I was always taught to rotate my shoes both for the health of my feet and prolong the life of my shoes and I usually had two pairs of shoes I was expected to rotate even when I was still in public school, except for one period when I was 12 when I outgrew a pair of shoes in 2 months.

  • Wow, that's quite a collection Imogen! I have about 10 pairs of summer shoes. Only 3 get worn regularly. I don't know how I'd choose if I had many more. Not that I wouldn't like giving it a try occasionally when nothing is working with the pairs I own…

  • Wow, everyone here has so many shoes. I have less than 10 pairs and we have 4 seasons here ! That 10 pairs include my stable wear too. A reason for this small amount probably is, that I simply don´t want to have more than I really need.

  • I have too many shoes (maybe 35 pairs not counting slippers and flip flops which are summer house slippers) but really only wore 5 pairs of my heels. I worked on my feet (until laid off) and choose a kitten heel for comfort. Got into a rut of picking up all the comfortabel kitten heels I could find! Now, I have a collection but all look similar. I am trying to choose and put some in boxes for later closet shopping.
    I need more variety – wedges, color – so when I do buy another pair I will force myself to go for it.

  • Currently I have 3 pairs. Same design, 3 different colors. Every few years I get brave and try another style and end up with back, leg and foot problems with only a few wearings. So far all those try-outs have been wasted money… I can wear heels as long as I never have to stand up! lol

  • I probably own about two dozen pair of shoes currently. Some are "specialized" (riding boots, snow boots) so don't get much wear. In any reason, I probably rotate between 4-6 pair regularly. These days, I can do a 3" heel max and *usually* only if I won't be doing much walking. Most comfortable for me are 1-2" heels, more so than flats.

    I will only sacrifice a small degree of comfort for looks. I refuse to wear shoes that hurt, no matter how gorgeous they are.

  • At last count I had 17 pairs of shoes but I think it's now 18 (hey, big spender!)
    My main problem is, I buy shoes which I think are going to be comfortable and then find out they're not… if I won the lottery, custom-made shoes would be one of my fastest lifestyle changes!

  • I have 100+ pairs of shoes and wear nearly all of them, close to equally, though I do develop favorites from time to time. Shoes are My Thing so I pretty much plan my looks around them. I am an equal opportunity wearer of heels of all heights, despite being 5'10"

  • Vicki – orthotics always make it difficult to find shoes.

    Kathleen – sounds like a great collection

    Sal – are you finding the heels comfortable?

    Mardel – we sound like shoe sisters!

    K.Line – it's about the shoes working with the outfit – even with the number of shoes I have, I still feel sometimes that I don't have quite the right pair of shoes

  • Chris – I'm with you on variety and different heel types!

    Goodworks1 – it's a pity so few shoes are comfortable for you.

    Deja – I have a comfort level, that even if they're heels they have to be the more comfortable ones rather than the ones that push your weight forward over your toes.

    Struggler – wouldn't it be great to have custom made shoes!

    rb – I love that – cobbler pin up girl!

  • Very few, as they are all expensive comfort shoes, as pretty as possible, and I don't have a lot of money.

    Which is not such a great problem for other aspects of fashion, as I have a fine arts degree and an eye for beautiful things, even secondhand, but no to secondhand shoes unless they have been sent to the charity shop immediately as they don't fit the owner.

    I agree with rotating shoes but have not always had enough in each season to do so.

    Am also one of those for whom low heels are more comfy than true flats.

  • I just love your posts! I honestly would have to get up and count them and right now my feet are too tired from running around all day styling a house for a photo shoot! So I will just say that yes i do the same rotation, especially in the summer, because I'm in bare feet it's easy to get blisters so then I'll be thinking. . . okay I can't wear those shoes for another 4 days because they hurt at the part and so on.

  • I think I have about 20 or 25 pairs (too lazy to check for sure) and an equal mix between flats and heels.
    I am only in my mid-twenties, but a couple years ago when I started wearing heels every day, I started getting awful spasms in my arches when I ran, danced, or did lunges or anything where I had my heel off the ground & pressure on the ball of my feet. The heel height has been coming down to 2 1/4" or less for daily wear, and it's made a lot of difference. That's the highest heel I'd purchase. I also pay close attention to the shape of the arch in the shoes. The remaining higher shoes are "just for pretty" only since I just can't stand the pain from wearing them for long stretches of time.
    Now I try to wear heels 50% or less of the time. I'm lucky that I can get away with flats at my current job.

  • I walk a lot, so comfort is extremely important to me. But, I also like being a little taller, so heels are great. I can usually find a few pairs that satisfy both needs, but it takes some effort to find them!

  • PS: I really love your blog and look forward to reading more. I have no style (seriously!), but am trying to get one!! Having kids took me out of the fashion loop, so I'm working on developing a style that works for me.

  • Lagatta – I agree – only every buy a second hand shoe that is basically new.

    Maria – I have more summer shoes because of the sweat/comfort/blister issue.

    Kari – count them – I often find that people underestimate how many shoes they have. I can't do the stupid high heel – I look at so many shoes and just think – completely impractical!

    Arizona – thanks so much for stopping by – you don't have no style – I can see you have style from your photo!

  • I love love love shoes, but I have far fewer pairs than I used to. I like the look of heels, but only wear them if they're comfy (or I'm going car-to-bar). I probably only have about 20 pairs these days – and usually about 5 or 6 on high rotation. I need new boots … And seeing everyone else with so many pairs, I feel almost justified going out and buying some! Also, I am a shocker at buying a pair on a whim and then getting rid of them after wearing them once because they're too high and I know I'll never wear them again!

  • 50ish pairs BUT how many do I really wear? Probably 4-5 pairs in a given season. Always looking for a low wedge or platform (1 to 2 inch) with low vamp. In fall thorough late winter am nearly always in Blundstones at home and while negotiating ice and slush in the street. Favourite brands: Arche Thierry Rabotin, Donald Pliner… just bought a pair of Rabotin leopard sandals.

  • I’d love to own more shoes, but have a terrible hit rate – more than half I am unable to wear longer than a few hours without pain. Although I have 18 pairs, I only wear about 4 pairs regularly in Autumn to Spring (two pairs of coloured boots, silver lace-ups and a pair of walking shoes) and 3 pairs in Summer (flatish sandals in different colours). As I’m a relaxed type who wears mostly jeans and works in a very casual environment, these are suitable choices. Or perhaps my career has been dictated by my need for comfort!

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