If you do not have a big budget to spend, all the more you have to select your shoes carefully. Buy basic colors like black, beige and navy in classic styles.
For everyday shoes, choose a low to medium shoe with a solid heel. Calf court shoes for the afternoon. Leave the high heels for evening wear.
The important thing is that they have to be comfortable. Walking in terrible fitting and painful shoes will ruin your day (and your posture.)
Try not to compromise quality for the sake of saving money.
Low quality shoes may cheapen your outfit.
What are the recommended shoes then?
The most elegant heels all closed pumps. They go well with almost every outfit. The concept of elegance here is to prevent “too much fuss.”
This also helps if you’re not the type to get regular pedicures!
Try not to wear white or chunky shoes if you have big feet, they will only make your feet bigger.
Slimmer heels give the illusion of smaller feet.
Shoes with ankle straps draw attention to the ankles. It somewhat causes a ‘disruption in the silhouette’ thus are only recommended if you have long long legs. This applies to ankle boots, ankle straps, sandals that have a high back.
If your shoes shows your toes, then ensure your nails are neat, clean and polished-looking. See also pedicure.
Elegant Shoes, Elegant Heels
Categorize Your Shoes
I split my shoes into three categories: 1) Walking shoes 2) The Dress shoe 3) Evening or Cocktail shoes
Elegant Shoes, Elegant Heels Basics
These are my daily shoes. They are for going to the library, grocery store or a casual cafe for lunch.
Maybe I’ll need another pair if I’m in the country or in the mountains.
Despite their casualness, they can still be elegant. For instance, my preference for these shoes are in neutral colors such as beige, black or white and maybe grey or brown.
That way I don’t have to think too much about how to match them.
I’ve gone through many of these’walking shoes’ in mainly off-whites, beige, black and navy.
Ballerinas or ballet shoes and loafers make the perfect shoes for the casual ensemble.
Ballerinas are very sweet and feminine. These elegant shoes are very slimming for the feet especially those who have wide feet.
They tend to be a bit too flat for me, but now there are ones with a firmer heel.
It helps to get a shoe-padding insert as well.
I like to wear loafers with linen pants.
They make the perfect travel elegant shoes as well.
Easy to take on and off, comfortable enough to walk for hours, lightweight, you can wear this in all seasons and go with almost everything in your travel wardrobe.
A good brand to buy is Tod’s, though I’m sure you can get similar styles with same quality for probably less.
One of my favorite activities to do to get some exercise is to go for long walks. If you walk for exercise, it is essential to get a good pair that will help reduce the impact of walking in your joints and ligaments.
I’ve been advised to change them every half a year.
The other very popular form for walking shoes are ‘flip-flops’, as they call it.
I personally have a pair but I don’t advise you to wear them unless its a short distance from your house or unless you are going to the beach. Most of them offer poor support for your feet and back, and the impact from the ground causes you to hurt your back if worn extended hours. They provide no coverage and protection for your feet.
I’ve also seen people tripping and hurting themselves due the sloppy nature of the sandal, such as getting caught on stairs and on escalators or resulting in a fall because others stepped on them accidentally.
Also it is hard to walk in a proper dignified way and you tend to walk with a ‘sweeping motion’. It is hard to walk gracefully in flipflops.
They also cause your feet to pick up a lot of dirt as well. I understand the convenience of wearing one, just let it be saved for the beach.
The Dress Shoe
This type of shoe is slightly dressier events such as lunch in the city, high tea, shopping downtown, a dinner party etc.
This is basically your ‘social and leisure’ activities shoe.
I am in favor of the medium heel as it helps you have better posture and not look sloppy. Also, since its a dressier event, a medium heel would suffice. Sometimes a low heel creates an impression of negligence. A very popular city shoe are known as ‘court shoes’. You can ask for them in shops .
I have a similar pair to the one above. It is dark chocolate brown, which I think sometimes, can be a bit more elegant than black (less harsh).
It goes with all my day dresses and some evening dresses.
I also have another pair with a slimmer heel in cream.
Again, as the elegant principles apply for choosing elegant shoes… that is why it is always recommended that you build your basics first such as classic styles and colors.
When shoes were first made, they were made with protection of the feet in mind. As time goes bye, style became more important.
To meet the demands of fashion, many shoes these days compromise on quality and instead place a strong emphasis on style. It is the “buy-and-throw-away” (after 5 uses) generation of manufacturing.
(It is okay to buy inexpensive shoes for fashion because you know that you won’t wear it everyday, just be careful in whatever shoes you wear that it provides adequate support otherwise it may result in future knee and back problems.
The Evening or Cocktail shoe
This is for the dressiest events in your life.
When you head out for a fancy party, charity ball, glamorous party on a boat, basically any time you want to look your absolute best.
How formal a cocktail shoe will depend on the material, the heel, and its color.
If you love high heels, this is the right time to be wearing a high heel without looking ridiculous.
In the past, it was considered very lovely to match the color of your elegant shoe to your dress or your bag (not both), or have matching material to your bag or dress.
Whether you should do it in current day? It is really up to you.
Custom shoe makers are becoming a rarity of course in this fast world of mass production, as well as those that will make a matching shoe and bag with the material. I still see it around in some countries. Since they are unavailable, if you have the luxury, shop well for matching shoe and bag.
For extra feminine elegance, invest in elegant shoes made of satin or silk when you have some spare savings. They are very lovely. For those with a limited budget, you only need a couple of pairs that will go with everything.
Bright colored shoes always add a little spark to your outfit. These elegant shoes can be very chic. If you do love your shoes, ensure your entire outfit is of only one or two colors that blend with each other and not contrast, then add a little pair of red heels at the end.
It’s been said that too high a heels are vulgar. While that is true, I do feel that wearing high heels is more accepted these days than in the past, but please confine them to wearing them only to dressy events, not to ski slopes, mountains, gardens or anywhere in the country.
Extra Caution: Choose Shoes Carefully
The height of your heels affect the way you walk.
Check yourself in the mirror when you walk in those heels.
Also, though it sounds silly but train yourself to walk, not with a runway walk, but a walk that is a little “still.” It is distracting to see someone bopping up and down or swaying side to side or ‘marching’.
Your Comfort Comes First I’m sure all of your have had the experience of wearing shoes that are ill fitting and they ruin your day. After that fateful day, we are left with blisters to heal over the next few weeks. One note – it is not really worth it.
Even if you can bear the pain (I was told people who love fashion have a high threshold of pain), a “tortured” look, “awkward walk” are something that cannot be prevented no matter how much pain you can endure. It doesn’t matter how many fashion magazines have esteemed the designer.
A good shoe does not necessarily fit your feet because we are all unique. Train Yourself To Know How To Fit Your Shoe It is also hard to tell whether a shoe simply needs breaking in, or whether it’ll be ill-fitting for life. I have wasted perhaps thousands of dollars trying to ‘make it work’.
If it doesn’t break it by the 10th time you wore it, forget it. Wear them at home for a week each time for 2 hours before you take them out.
I find it helpful to stick to boutiques and brands that I know who can offer reliable elegant shoes. Sometimes I find it very helpful to identify a salesperson who is very good at fitting a shoe to your feet and I tend to shop only when he/she is working. Have fun with your shoes!
Thank you for reading Elegant Shoes!
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