Category Archives: shoes

Spectre/Spectator

These bow-tie-bedecked two-tone wingtips by Comme des Garcons have me slouching all over the show, exhaling theatrical sighs and swoons (not kidding, that’s how I roll when it comes to tuxedo-inspired attire, in particular where accessories are concerned).

Someone recently told me I shouldn’t be so concerned with fashion. I had a private Miranda-in-Devil-Wears-Prada moment, as I took in the accusee’s fashion-conscious chambray and straight-cuts. I get so tired of hearing it, honestly. It is possible to be completely fashion befok and still not be a vapid, shallow creature that blinks, glassy-eyed at the mention of more authentic concerns like the environment, world peace and the economy. I’ll Murakami and Greenpop your ass back to self-righteousville, I will.

AND back to my swoon. Those sleek-stepping Comme des Garcons beauties remind me of this video:

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Old Faithful

In my first week at college they made us do all manner of awkward ‘icebreakers’ and get-to-know-each-other exercises. You know the kind: say your name and three things no one else knows about you, or even more cringeworthy, state your name and accompany it with an action that best illustrates your mood. So 90s.

One such exercise involved us each filling a shoebox with personal articles which would then be handed over to someone else in the group to deduce things about our personalities. This particular exercise actually had me interested – sure, you’re going to put in a couple of wanky things that make you look suitably cultured and interesting, but it really is telling to note the things that people want you to know about them.

The shoebox that I received contained a single, beaten up old trainer – scuffed, with worn down soles and fuzzy laces. What did it say about its owner, Johannes? That he was unpretentious, outdoorsy and not too concerned with fashion. ‘You got everything right,’ said Johannes, ‘but you missed one thing.‘ What was it? The fact that he is extremely loyal. He had been wearing the same pair of shoes for years and had no plans of swapping them for a new pair any time soon. I’ve never forgotten that.

My own old faithfuls, my suede Country Road ankle boots, have reached a similar stage of character building. I have officially worn through the sole of the right one, right down to the ground. The veneer on the heels has been superglued back into place, the buckle straps, I lovingly refurl into place on a regular basis. They’ve been to huge rock concerts, interviews, dinners, on dates and to festivals. I’ve worn them so smooth in the sole that I routinely avoid near-spills in public places. During winter I lusted after a pair of Chelsea boots which were to become their replacement, so I thought. Not the case. Now, just before their official first re-soling, they remain my first choice.

I feel proud to be so invested in my old faithfuls. I still routinely wear a pair of low-heeled leather Crayon wedges that I bought when I was 17, despite friends and family telling me to chuck them on a regular basis. I see a good, solid shoe as something that is hard to come by. When you find them, with a little love, care (and possibly, a sense of humour), they will last you a lifetime.

Allo Love

I’ve been lusting after these ever since I saw them parading down the catwalk during Lisp‘s show at CTFW. They were sold out at Aldo, and, because they were over £50 on ASOS, would’ve been double the price with import tax.

Amen for travelling friends. They will be on my ruby-toed pods come October.

My first espadrille wedge. Who woulda thunk?


Block Party

I love the brash, all-out-colour solidness of these shoes by Pierre Hardy. They are so unapologetically scene-stealing!

These bow-bedecked babies that he did as part of a collection for GAP are my real favourites.

Final image: The Coveted

Ready? Okay! CTFW Cheer.

Today begins my first experience of AFI Cape Town Fashion Week ever. Well, actually, today begins my first experience of any fashion week ever. How quaint? Thanks to both this here blog and 36Boutiques (my new place of employment, in fashion, no less) I am lucky enough to be attending some amazing shows this week. (I’d like to thank my long-suffering sidekick/confidante Olivia, Woolworths Italian blend coffee grounds and YOU, for reading my ramblings, rants and rhapsodies).

I had wanted to do a post about my idea of what might constitute fashion week essentials, but in the midst of a busy week I have run out of time. One would think that someone who has level 5 fashion crises as often as me would have stockpiled a veritable mountain of potentials for the week, but that’s not really the case. I have devised a loose capsule collection of basic statement pieces – lots of leather and black with a mix of rock ‘n roll and Mod Squad touches, bright lips and some serious height (see footwear lined up and ready to roll above). To me, edgy leather, tons of black, towering heels and a healthy sense of curiosity along with some interesting accessories will always equal fashion. I may slip in a little vintage homage/some mad colour somewhere along the line, and I am going to try and keep it as local as possible.

If you are also going to be at CTFW, you should try to do the local thang too, because there is going to be something called a Woza Wall there. Wear local to CTFW, pop by the Woza Wall, have your pic taken, and get 20% off your next Mememe purchase. Cool huh? I spy a shortcut to the navy hoop skirt with the snowy white piping along the hemline that I spotted when I was browsing there last.

Follow my tweets and 36Boutiques for street style snippets, catwalk commentary and other oddities over the next three days.

Peach Fuzz

Shoes have never really been my thing.

I used to say that they were peripheral to my outfit – that I would prefer if they simply blended in and did their subtle best to not call attention to themselves. This would mean that they would draw attention away from my prance of extraordinary accessories – hats, brooches, scarves, ascots, you name it. When my mom fawned over shoe shop displays I’d give them a cursory glance and head straight for the nearest accessories counter.

My, how things have changed. I think it has a lot to do with the fact that my job now entails a fair amount of desk work, making heel-wearing quite a wondrous and unpunishing reality. Best thing is that I get to admire then on my feet all day, in between cappuccinos, blog reading and emails. And then the mini strut to and from car, or to and from cappuccino haunt: just long enough to turn a few heads, just short enough to remain pleasant. I now spend a lot of time admiring shoes – online, in store windows, on the feet of others. I have a particular penchant for boots with Cuban heels, but anything with a slightly rock edge will also do.

This peachy parade of chunky-heeled beauties is tempting the hell outta me over at the ASOS clearance sale. They are all less than £40 a pair! With rumours of exorbitant customs taxes swirling sly-eyed around the office, I am on the hunt for someone en route to London with space in their luggage for just two little pairs… the tan T-bars and the piglet-pink pair, too.

Crown Jools

Yes, I know, the title of this post is deeply corny, but I couldn’t resist. My post-birthday hangover is to blame.

On Saturday night I celebrated my 25th with a collective a close friends and family over an imperial Indian feast held in my lounge. We were seated on sari-covered cushions around a massive square table dotted with florals, candles and my collection of skulls. Over the course of the evening we partook in numerous Cobra beers (which went down a treat despite initial concerns that they were low in alcohol) and indulged in glorious curries with all the trimmings that make Indian dining so sumptuous and intricate.

I hadn’t planned to dress to theme, but a particularly glamorous black and gold vintage kaftan that had been hanging alongside my Rah Rah Room stock for months won me over at the last minute. I accessorised with an ankle bracelet, a bindi, dark eyes and bare feet and had a bloody wondrous time, frolicking about, catching up with old friends, and munching on homemade onion bhajis. I opted for a nice stiff colonial G&T (or fifteen) and the night ended with some spirited drunken dancing to Fleetwood Mac in the lounge – eyes closed, swaying, singalong style. Perfect.

Together, my friends and family got my some really beautiful, meaningful and 25-worthy gifts. Usually people just give me clothes and jools, because that’s how I roll, but this year’s gifts were really thoughtful, so I’ve decided to share a few with you…

My parents gave me this beauteous chunky Le Creuset pot in ‘Coastal Blue’ – it’s the exact shade of those old enamelled Aga’s and I love it. One of my other favourite things to do is to cook, so this little baby is going to be the belly of many a curry to come.

What a cool mix of things! First mention goes to the White Stripes dvd, which was a gift from Ian and Gabi. I am a diehard Jack White fan and I haven’t yet seen Under Blackpool Lights. I plan to watch it whilst eating some  of that Honest chocolate spread gleaming in the top right corner (a gift from my handsome friend Arnaldo). Nicol gave me the bonbons, along with the crystal that’s resting on top of Jack and Meg. It’s supposed to ward off negativity and the harmful effects of electromagnetic impulses. Fitting, considering I sleep with my Blackberry by my side and work on a computer all day long. It’s really beautiful, metallic and multi-faceted – I plan to attach it to some kind of thong and wear it around my neck, nouveau hippie style.

The bird locket was from Luke and Ruby and I love it. The little brown leather bag has an interesting story. My friend Max and his sister Lulu have started a project to raise funds for a Malawian guy called Fortune who is desperate to get back home. The project is called Fortuneknit, and Max and Lulu are putting their craft skills to the test, making bags and other paraphernalia to help Fortune get home. If you met Max you would know why I am so touched that he completed each stitch in this bag just for me. Although he’s creative he’s not exactly the sewing type, so it really is special. More on Fortuneknit when I have more information.

These Pringle Chelsea boots are pretty much perfect. I have had my eye on them for my months, and finally, sensing desperation, my friends at my old company, Colourworks, saved the day. They’re the colour of dark chocolate, perfectly plain, and have a perversely pointed toe. Coincidentally, I scraped the veneer off the heel of my other old favourites the day before my birthday. Kismet!

Olivia gave me this painting – her mother painted it of her when she was a little girl and I’ve always loved it. She gave me the original to add to my small but growing collection of art and it means so much to me. Her button nose is unmistakable. She also made me this mad, amazing card – a swirl of citrus filled with heartfelt words.

These silky Honest chocolate bonbons from Arnaldo didn’t stand a chance in our apartment. They were with us for about seven minutes before being consumed.

All in all, some great presents from some great people, and this is just a sneak peek. Take a look at the chunkette of floral cake my mom baked for me, too: