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Shoes for the Discerning Indian Woman

High Heels Hurt Feet: How to Avoid Shoe Pain August 13, 2013

I am a self professed shoe lover. Especially when it comes to heels, my knees go weak. (that rhymed!!)

However, I try and mix up my heel heights all the time. This is primarily because wearing shoes of only one height often damage your feet.

We all have heard about the impact of high heels on your feet. I mean, there are women across the world submitting to surgery because of the ill effects of high heels on their feet. The only exception is Russian women. I dont know how they do it, but I have not heard of Russian Women undergoing foot surgery due to their awesome yet continuous wear of high heels. Look at them! They hold an Annual Stilletto Race! They are just…Awesome!

For everyone else, going with only one heel height (especially ‘high’) means long term damage to your tendons and bones.

More recently Sarah Jessica Parker (Carrie Bradshaw) from Sex and the City fame proclaimed her foot injury due to high heels worn over years:

“For ten or so years, I literally ran in heels,” the star admits to Net-a-Porter’s digital fashion magazine. “I worked 18-hour days and never took them off. I wore beautiful shoes, some better made than others, and never complained.”

I can totally understand and envy that. But then, after years of wearing beautiful high heels, this is what she says:

“I went to a foot doctor and he said, ‘Your foot does things it shouldn’t be able to do. That bone there… You’ve created that bone. It doesn’t belong there.’ The moral of the story is, the chickens are coming home to roost. It’s sad, because my feet took me all over the world, but eventually they were like, ‘You know what, we are really tired, can you just stop – and don’t put cheap shoes on us?’”

Of course, do NOT wear cheap ill made shoes, but being in India I have seen some very good brands make shoes that may not be compatible with your feet.

 

Rule #1: BUY COMFORTABLE SHOES: Do not buy shoes that feel wobbly when you are still in the showroom. They may look pretty, but really, wearing shoes that are not stable doesn’t make sense. Everyone has a different center of gravity. Just try walking in your pair, they should not wobble and the shoe heel should come at the correct point beneath your actual foot heel to make you feel comfortable. The toe of the shoe should not pinch.

Don't Wear Wobbly Shoes

Don’t Wear Wobbly Shoes

Rule #2: BUY DIFFERENT TYPE OF SHOES: Many women I see are comfortable with a certain ‘type’ of shoe. Wedges, stilettos, flats, ballerinas. I would say that mix up the type you own. Especially keep two varieties for daily wear. Even a wedge and a stiletto mixed over a week is good enough. Just make it different, there is a huge world of choice out there!

Wear Different Type of Shoes

Wear Different Type of Shoes

Rule #3: CHANGE YOUR HEEL HEIGHT: This may not be everyday, but on weekends wear sneakers, or ballerinas. This helps tremendously in exercising all aspects of your leg and toe, and not allowing your foot to get into trouble because any one part feels continual strain.

Very Heel Height over a Week

Very Heel Height over a Week

Rule #4: WALK BAREFOOT: Whenever possible, give your feet a rest! Walk barefoot, preferably on grass, sand or mud. There is nothing quite as relaxing for your feet! (And it really relaxes and benefits all your muscles)

Barefoot Walking on Grass

Walk Barefoot on Grass

That’s it! Just try following these four simple rules, and you will be spared of the most painful, long term impacts of your high heels.

 

Strappy Black Sandals – my go-to party shoes! August 10, 2013

It is always nice to wear heels. However, with driving for more than 3 hours a day and incessant rains, it has been a chore to wear shoes that need buckling at the ankles, or have heels that can slip on wet streets.

The other day when we went out for dinner with family, I thought it was the perfect time to bring out my strappy black heels. Hubby was driving, and we were going to a restaurant which meant – no walking through rainy puddles!

They take me about four inches further away from the ground, and make me feel oh-so-happy. There is something about a delicate pencil heel that can make your back straighter, your stride longer and your smile wider. 🙂

Strappy Black High heeled Sandal

Strappy Black High heeled Sandal

I bought this pair a while ago from Catwalk, and considering the delicate nature of Catwalk shoes, have worn them sporadically.

The black colour ensures it matches most clothes, especially skinny jeans – the silhouette it provides is very sleek. There should be one such shoe in every girls wardrobe. A staple which can be worn with almost any colour, can match almost any occasion, and is feminine.

The criss-cross pattern of the straps makes this very feminine, and the gold/metallic loops on the side save it from being too black.

The material is a soft suede, with bits of elastic near the ankle which helps me slip on the shoe fast despite its steep angle due to the heel and the many straps.

This design per se is pretty standard, but there is a specific pair made for every girl out there. This is mine.

strappy heels 1The shoe is super comfortable notwithstanding the pencil heel. It is very well balanced, and the straps hold my feet in place perfectly. There is an ankle buckle, which is a little difficult to tie by oneself. The buckle is a small delicate thing, and the strap is as wide as the buckle. This makes it a little difficult to put it through the buckle keyhole, especially for someone with long fingernails. In my opinion they could have put a simple faux buckle, but then this is a small point, and probably makes the shoe more stable.

Strappy high heeled black sandal with open buckle

Strappy high heeled black sandal with open buckle

All said and done, they are a definite plus to my shoe wardrobe, and a very comfortable pair!

 

Charles & Keith – Awful Service: Update! July 19, 2013

So, I ranted about Charles & Keith and their service in Mumbai. Eventually, after multiple emails, I finally got a response from their Singapore counterpart, who then directed my mails to their Indian person.

The Indian marketing lady was gracious enough – but a little too late in the day.

My shoe was lost! In the C&K service blackhole. It went for a heel tip repair and was never, ever seen by me again. Sinff! sniff!

In lieu they gave me coupons for use (only in India) of the same value as the shoe. Well, I went and got myself another pair.

Thats all that I could do, but I never got another black and copper pair that can match with silver or gold embellished outfits 😦

 

So that’s that. My resolve? I will never, ever send a shoe back to C&K for repair.

 

My Tryst with Red Shoes: at Work & Elsewhere April 24, 2010

I really like your shoes. And you. I admire people who can wear red shoes I think they are very difficult to carry off

My colleagues comment left me speechless. A little flattered, but surprised as well. You see, shoes are the one thing that really don’t need confidence. They are just…worn.

Porphyra - A Beautiful Red Algea

Porphyra - A Beautiful Red Algea

I love the colour red, like almost all Indians. However, though keep few reds in my cupboard, I wear them with caution, and not usually to work. With shoes, it is a different matter altogether.

I have always had a pair of red shoes in my cupboard. Ever since I can remember, I have liked to pick up red shoes. Its a pity I did not take photographs of my shoes before this, else I could have given a nice series of photographs – vintage, really – of my ‘Red Shoes Through the Ages’ or some such thing.

They started off more as fun in college, and now I have these that I wear to office.

At the moment though,  I have two pairs, one rather dull red, and the other a shiny patent red. I am a little particular about the shade of red when I choose the shoes. I sincerely believe that red is a beautiful colour. However, it can look so very awful if the shade of red selected is

a) not suitable to the skin (warm shades and cool shades) or

b) not suitable to the occasion

Once I had red flats, with red sequins holding down the toes. They added zing to my dull blue jeans for a casual evening out with friends. I however, could not imagine wearing them to office.

Red Leather Peep Toes

Red Leather Peep Toes

To start with, are my red leather peep-toes. The design of these shoes are not exactly subtle, but the colour and the overall make of them, thanks to the leather, the stitching, etc., makes them my favorite for office wear.

They are not exactly from a fancy shop, but something I saw and was love at first sight. The toes are covered quite well, and the ‘peep’ is just enough to show a hint of nailpolish. And it covers the feet quite well from all angles. The leather scrunches up as it ends near the foot, to give a nice feminine ruffled look.

The heels are around 2 inches, comfortable and of  dark wood-like substance.

Red ShoesI wear this pair pretty often with either dull coloured skirts, or with a black and white outfit.

It brings in a splash of coliur to the black and white, without drawing attention to itself.

The leather itself is patchy in shades, and that brings its own angle into the shoes.

Red Shoes in Office

Red Shoes in Office

They go pretty well with jeans as well. The heel height helps in cigarette leg jeans, and the red colour adds to the glam look of the outfit.

However, I still like to reserve it for office wear. It is the bit of daring in formal wear which can make a day brighter.

The next pair of red shoes – and I must confess, I recently got them from Singapore – are anything but subtle. In design they are as formal as can be, but they are a bright red, made of patent leather-like material, shining and definitely drawing attention to themselves.

Shiny Red Shoes

Shiny Red Shoes

I got these shoes from a URS & Inc shop, and they fit like a dream – and I simply could not resist the sassy red.

The design, as you can see, is a very staid moccasin look-alike, with a bit of steel buckle for show. But the red is tomato, yet in certain light looks maroonish.

From Office in Patent Red Shoes

From Office in Patent Red Shoes

The heel is pure wood, and gives a nice hollow ring when walking on solid stone floors (marble or granite), which is nice to hear in its own way.

The sole is well cushioned, and in short, wearing this pair is a joy unto itself – and most of it is due to the colour!

Red Shoes with BeigeSo I pair this with my dullest trousers (photo above: shirt: Fab India, Trousers: G2000, Dirty room with tangled computer wires: mine!) The design of this pair of shoes is good for trousers, I dont think I will wear this with skirts, or even Salwar Kameezes.

In trousers as well, because of its shiny nature, it does not go very well with pure black, and thus I reserve it for camel, beige and brown trousers. It then adds an interesting aspect to the complete look, especially when sitting down – as then the shoes become really visible.

Red Shoe

My suggestion – on a Monday, when you have the Blues, there is nothing likea pair of Red Shoes to chase them away.

Try it, the next time in office. But do take care that the shade suits your feet, and complements your clothes. Red shoes need to be worn with care, and you dont want people pointing at your feet because the colour is so garish and bright, it robs the shoe and the wearer from any style quotient!

The colour red is known for its energy, its sanctity (in India and China) and its power. Feel free to dip into this reservoir and make a bleak work day some fun!


(Photograph courtesy Flickr)

 

Boots! Boots! Boots! Buy Boots for Winter and Shoots December 29, 2009

Alright, so enough. I have been away for simply too long. I must admit I started on a post, but then work caught up and it still lies unfinished. However, I think it is an interesting post and I will soon finish and upload it. It is about shoes you want to have for an Indian Wedding. Yep, its important. And if you know more than 3 Indians, its a must-have. There is bound to be at least one wedding you need to attend every year.

Boots Time!

However, we are sitting in December, post Christmas and pre-31st. This is the time most of the world population is experiencing cold. And this is the perfect time to take out your boots.

Since man invented footwear and since the time there have been winters, Boots have been worn by Men and Women, and I dont see them going anywhere away in the long term future either. They are way too wonderful to vanish!

Those lovely creations that cover up all of your feet and sizable parts of your legs yet look great. Yup, Boots are In.

Till recently all you needed was a pair of Ugg‘s and you were as hep as Britney Spears or <insert name of celebrity here>. However, times have moved on and it is time to update your shoe closet with something prettier.

The word of Boots is so large that I really do not know where to begin. So I will begin with me.

Boots for Hot India

I am in Bombay. And this place is probably worse than Australia when it comes to December chills. The temperature varies anwywhere between 30deg Celcius and 40 deg Celcius. Whee! What fun isnt it? I hate it. I hate having no winters. No chance of taking out the wollens, the boots, covering yourself up, snuggling up with hot coffee and putting my feet out to warm in the pale golden sunrays.

So, when I went to Calcutta recently, I prepared myself for a fun Winter Vacation. Even though its almost pleasantly cool there (between 10 to 15 deg celcius)

Considering where I live, I have invested in a pair of boots that dont necessarily keep me warm. They are made of Jeans. Very cowboyish but not really. They have a nice long pencil heel and pointed toes. They also have brown threadwork on the sides of the blue denim calf-length boots. Rather sassy. And very wearable. In any weather. From? A UK brand I cant remember now.

Ive always wanted leather and fur boots though, but since Delhi is probably the only place I can wear them without seeming daft, I have stayed away from them since I left that city. So instead what I did was get a pair of shoots (shoe boots). They are faux leather, have a not-too-high heel, and fold down near my ankles like elve’s shoes, exposing an inner lining of velvet. Yum!

What are Shoots? (Shoe boots)

Peep toe Shoots

Classic Black Shoe boots

They are basically shoes, but look like boots. So, they end somewhere near the ankle and have the shape a boot typically has for the foot. So, they give the convenience of shoes, but look like Boots. They can be worn with anything from midi-length dresses to jeans. They keep your feet warm enough and yet keep your ankles and legs free. A convenient addition to your wardrobe.

Boots for Winters

If you are getting boots to wear for colder climes, one of my favorites of course is the black leather look, with a bit of fur and lots of heel. Be careful though, because not only is it a difficult style to carry off with elan, its also a difficult one to get without being sleazy. Be careful about the loops and buttons and studs on such a boot! And of course, the shine factor. Try it out with what you would probably wear it with before purchasing it. You dont want to look like a slut, and neither do you want to look like a Ninja!

Length is personal choice as far as boots are concerned. Longer they are, cooler they look. Of course, the most standard length for a good boot is calf length. Its convenient and yet its boot-ish enough.

Thigh High Boots

If youve got the thighs for it, try one that reaches above your knee cap.

Flat Boots in soft leather

Heel height is also a personal preference. If you can walk with stillettoes, go in for high heels. But remember, with boots there is restricted leg mobility. So whats easy in a pump can be a little difficult in a stiff boot that covers up your shins, restricting movement. So try on the shoes and walk keeping in mind the kind of floor you will be on! Block heels also look good on boots, so dont you worry. Try out wedge heels for your boots as well.

There are flat boots apart from Ugg’s. And these too look pretty decent. I, however find them a tad difficult to walk on since the length of the boot restricts my calf and shin bone mobility. In case you want to go in for a flat boot, try one made of velvet or of a soft leather, which probably crunches up into confortable wrinkles all the way up your leg. Try some with ribbons and buckles in that case. Way cool.

What I would thoroughly recommend

This season shoots are in, in a major way. They can be worn with slim fit jeans and look great – just like the high heel pumps with ankle length jeans. So try and get a pair of warm comfortable shoots. Boots of course are classic and will make a re-entry every year for the wallet conscious. For the fashion conscious, the world is open!

And a word for Men:

There is no season for Boots for you! Men in boots always look good 🙂 Go get a good pair, probably tan leather?

Where to shop?

There is no dearth of boot and shoot sellers. However, if you need a guiding hand in India, follwing are some shops that I have seen with good designs. I wouldnt say collection, because they stock only 3-4 types, but the designs are decent without being OTT or sleazy. Remember, its my top-of-mind recall here, and not necessarily the only, or the best. Also, I dont have any tie-ups with these shops or their owners or anybody!

If wallet is no constraint, you know where to go. Sky is the limit and there is no lack of designers catering to your boots-whims!

Otherwise, Look out for boots and shoots at –

Premium Shops:

-Aldo

-Charles & Keith

-Nine West

-Catwalk

Medium Range Shops:

-Metro

-Regal

-Mochi

-Inc. 5

-Levi’s

Multi-Brand outlets:

-Lifestyle

-Marks & Spencer

-Shopper’s Stop

Happy Boot Shopping! Have a WONDERFUL 2010! One New Year resolution for you?

Get a bigger Shoe Closet! 🙂

(PS – Thanks to the many many websites I accessed for the photographs! I forgot to keep your links, but some are:

http://twistedphysics.typepad.com, http://www.shoemall.com, http://styletips101.com, and of course, the mighty Google)

 

My Walking Shoes October 12, 2009

The Shoes
The Shoes

I bought this pair of pretty looking heels from TresMode early last year, and have worn them on a number of occasions. However, what stands out the most in my mind is the fact that whenever I have worn them, I have not usually planned a day filled with walking around. Quite the reverse.

Since these pumps have a decent amount of heel height and are pointed towards to toes, I usually reserve them for occasions which involve more sitting and less walking. Like going for dinner or a movie rather than going shopping.

But, every time I have worn these shoes, my quiet outing has been converted into one where I have ended up walking around a lot!

So I call them my walking shoes.

With Pink Dress
With Pink Dress

With Multicoloured skirt

With Multicoloured skirt

A pair of pretty cmfortable pumps, they are well balanced and a colour unusual enough to match grey, blue and green pretty well, as well as compliment colours like pink with which I have worn them as well.

I especially like the small bow made in front with the faux leather, with rivets at the ends, which gives it its unique look.  The detailing on the front and sides are thread-work in a clever design which gives the shoe the look of a cowboy accessory, yet be feminine and anything but thanks to its one and half inch heel and pointed toe. The sole is also very pretty, black with the same  intricate design etched onto the hard material. I often have the urge to walk over sand or soft soil, just to see how the imprint of the shoe sole looks!

Let me give a few distinct examples of the shoe’s effect. There was this wonderful day when I was supposed to meet someone for a movie, and then that person would drop me back home after dinner. Not a chance of walking more than the required few steps in the theater and the adjoining diner. However, as luck would have it, we found the diner closed, and then proceeded to walk all the way around the area, chatting and having a good time, and yes, we ate something for dinner. But we walked kilometers!

Then there was the time I went on vacation. This particular day we were supposed to go on a cruise, so I expected a relaxed day on a boat, and really, no walking. So I wore the heels. And then we landed in Evian-les-Baines, and had to walk around that delightful town, through its uphill mountainous roads. Good fun, but walking for more than 10 hours is something this shoe was not designed for!

Yesterday, I was supposed to meet someone for breakfast, and I did not anticipate anything more than an hour in a restaurant. It ended up being a three hour walk through an extensive mall with cobblestones after the meal!

Walking Around Evian

Walking Around Evian-les-Bains

However, though every time I have worn these shoes anticipating a quiet time, I end up having a lot of wandering around and meandering through all types of streets. But it has always been good fun and I have enjoyed every moment of it. So, in a way I also look at them as the shoes I have fun with.

I must say, after all the walking I have put this pair through, they look very well, without a scratch or any other complaint. The only complaint that comes is from my feet by having to walking in heels over terrain definitely not meant for them (hilly areas etc) – so its not their fault at all. However, to that my shoes have a response. Recently I went to a mall and got a free foot massage the day I was wearing these shoes!

Walking Shoes

Walking Shoes

I must say, Tresmode has made a very pretty and sturdy pair of shoes, but they hold special mention in my shoe closet because of the special connection they have with me. They always give me a good time, lots of walking around with friends and even free foot massages!

They are indeed, my favourite walking shoes now 🙂

PS – I would like to thank Tresmode once again for the great quality, fit and endurability of their shoes which has enabled me to complete all my impromptu treks!

 

Small and Sweet Kitten Heels September 17, 2008

Filed under: Shoes — Dips @ 10:16 am
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“My foot’s hurt real bad.” Was my colleague rant as she hobbled down the road wearing flat chappals on Monday.
Yesterday I saw her sporting her latest chic black kitten heels. Duly admiring the asset I ask her about her foot.
“Oh its still hurting, though better than yesterday.”
“What about the heels?” I ask.
“Well, I wanted to wear nice shoes.” *Grin!*

And that, people sums up the beauty of affairs with shoes. She was in pain, but the pain diminished – by her causing more pain to herself. Idiotic? Not to her.

To most women, nothing can prep you up like a pair of shoes can – even though its something most people wont notice. You don’t need to have a substance abuse problem with shoes (ala Carrie Bradshaw), but you sure can keep yourself well stocked.

When you don’t want to wear flats, but want something to give you that slight elevation, kitten heels are the best. As the name implies they are not full blown heels, but are sweet and small like kittens. They work very well in office and out. Functional, while giving you a chic look for the fashion element.

Tiny heels with lovely designs, they elevate your foot just enough to give the impression of heels, yet are short and stable enough to be comfortable for all-day wear.

Unlike the ugy block heels of the past, kitten heels combine the svelte look of a stilletto, while curtailing it at a few millimeters. They look just amazing with full skirts. Better than the ballerina shoes or the old variety that women wore in 80s.

As with any heeled shoe the Kitten comes in a variety of toe types and designs but can wear the incongruous colours like pink really really well.

And, if like my colleague who hurt her foot and dint want to repeat her flat chappals, you want something fashionable to prep you up, I would suggest a nice kitten heel in your shoe cupboard for just these occasions.
Kitten Heels, finally, are the answer to the ugly square heeled, but oh-so-comfortable slingbacks your mother wore.