SHOE CARE ESSENTIALS

My nearest and dearest know that I’m not a fan of tenuously footwear-related paraphernalia: shoe ornaments, things with shoes embroidered on them, shoe-shaped items that aren’t shoes…

I’m keen to own items which are either beautiful, functional or both, and I love shoes….actual shoes.

With all of that in mind, my brother cleverly selected the perfect entirely functional shoe-related gift for me.

 

Inside this lovely red textured leather pouch, was a compact little shoe polish kit.

A neutral polish, a black polish, a brush and polishing cloth. These really are the essentials for looking after your shoes.

My method:

  1. Apply the polish with kitchen roll
  2. Leave it to sink in for 20-30 minutes
  3. Remove any excess polish with more kitchen roll
  4. Buff to your desired level of shine with the cloth

Just as beards are back on-trend, I feel that looking after your best assets (no not those, your shoes!), is having a renaissance.

Polishing my shoes is one of those easy manual tasks which I find almost meditative, and highly satisfying. Plus I love that polish smell!

People ask me how often they should polish their shoes. That depends how often you wear them.

I recommend not wearing one pair of shoes two days in a row: alternating pairs allows moisture to dry and increases the life of footwear.

For frequently worn shoes which need to look smart, you would be wise to polish them every two weeks. If you like a more lived-in look, you still need to nourish your footwear regularly. Shoe polish is like moisturiser for leather. Make time to give all of your regularly worn shoes some TLC every month or so.

Do you polish your shoes? If so, how often? Let me know in the comments or on FacebookInstagram or Twitter.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

WHY IS TOE CLEAVAGE SEXY?

Have you heard the term “toe cleavage”? If you haven’t, it refers to being able to see the lines between your toes, for example in a low-cut court shoe or ballet pump.

The comparison between toes and breasts is an intriguing one. Whereas breasts are frequently seen as objects of sexual desire, the love of toes is considered to be a fetish.

Isn’t the current norm for defining toe cleavage as sexy, therefore bizarre?

According to modern thinking, depending on the level of sexuality you wish to evoke, you can opt for a cut of shoe which shows the gaps between all, a couple or none of your toes.

My practical advice is to be aware that the lower the cut of your shoes, the less support they will offer and the more likely they are to rub. With slip-on court styles, low cuts can mean that the shoe is more likely to come off, potentially causing injury.

If you believe the correlation between sexiness and amount of toe cleavage, you might be keen to exercise caution when it comes to exposing your toe cracks (ahem) in work or other formal situations.

Discover more useful tips on the meanings of shoe shapes, and how to choose footwear to flatter your figure, in my book Outfits in Minutes: A Guide for Time-Pressed Women.

 

Do you think toe cleavage is sexy? Let me know in the comments or on FacebookInstagram or Twitter.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

A SIMPLY STYLISH 2016

Have you ever wished for a fairy godmother to wave her magic wand, and provide you with an instantly perfect outfit every day?

I know a book which gives you the skills to be your own fairy godmother.

Outfits in Minutes: A Guide for Time-Pressed Women, which I co-wrote with the fabulous Samantha Clarke, is packed full of tips, tricks and our signature formulas for getting dressed quickly in the morning.

We help you to simplify your dressing decisions, whilst understanding the meanings of colours and shoe styles, and how you can use them to flatter your own unique figure.

There are also plenty of opportunities to discover how to experiment with different looks, without making mistakes.

Why not give yourself the gift of easy style for 2016?

Don’t forget to write your review on Amazon, and recommend our book to your friends.

Thanks and happy 2016!

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

MERRY CHRISTMAS!

A Merry Christmas to all of my readers!

Best wishes for a wonderful 2016 full of comfortable, beautiful shoes.

© The Shoe Consultant Ltd

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

FOR SHE WHO HAS EVERYTHING…

If you’re struggling to think of a thoughtful Christmas gift for your loved one, I have an idea that could mean you’ll win massive bonus points this year.

Do you know a lady who has a wardrobe crammed full of clothes, but can’t seem to get out of the front door on time each morning? Why not help her discover the formula for looking fabulous every day with minimal stress? By the way, I don’t mean buy her multiple black T-shirts and blue jeans à la Steve Jobs.

In my book Outfits in Minutes: A Guide for Time-Pressed Women, co-author Samantha Clarke and I provide methods, charts and easy formulas for dressing confidently every day.

As you would expect from me, there are plenty of shoe-specific tips to help create the perfect top-to-toe look.

I know that for those of you who don’t live in the U.S., it’s tricky to buy a Kindle book as a gift. To solve this for you, I found this website which lets you give a customised gift card instead. The ASIN you need is B00SOYBHSS.

Let me know how your gift is received, and don’t forget to buy a copy for yourself, to avoid being out-dressed by your loved one.

I’d love you to add a review on Amazon too!

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

PRESENT LIST PT 2

  • Blond ambition
    Blond ambition
    This tongue-in-cheek tribute to Madonna's early '90s tour gives glamour to the wearer, at the same time as displaying a fabulous cultural reference.
  • Coffee porcelain
    Coffee porcelain
    With the delightful illusion of coffee pouring out of a decorative porcelain pot, the 12cm liquid-look heel is countered by a 2cm platform.
  • Mallard duck
    Mallard duck
    There's something very pleasing about the colour and material combinations of this curvy court shoe, based on the male of the water-loving species.
  • Write
    Write
    The simplicity of this slingback makes it all the more appealing, with its classic yellow pencil heel and upper with the look of lined paper.
  • Orca
    Orca
    Mr Levi cleverly combines black and white shapes. Ordinarily I'm not happy to be compared to a whale, but in this instance I'll make an exception.
  • Chinese 2015
    Chinese 2015
    In celebratory gold and red, this style displays subtle details of traditional Chinese decoration such as a delicate tassel swinging from the heel.
  • Stork
    Stork
    Ever wanted four dainty legs? There's something quite perfect about the cute heel detailing, contrasted against the stark white upper and beak detailing.

For lovers of show-stopping footwear, the ultra-creative designer Kobi Levi produces magnificent creations (with price-tags to match).

Worn by the likes of Lady Gaga, thrill your shoe-obsessed loved one on Christmas day with any one of the awe-inspiring styles in the slide show.

Let me know how your gift was received in the comments or on FacebookInstagram or Twitter.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

A TRIBUTE

With only a few short weeks until Mini Shoe Consultant is due to arrive into this world, I thought it appropriate to expose my pregnancy shoe comfort secret.

It is recommended to wear flats when you’re pregnant to help support your changing centre of gravity, avoid back pain, and prevent slips and falls. I found I had to temporarily retire even my most comfortable wedges fairly early on, due to the extra weight on the balls of my hard-working feet.

I owe much of the contentment my feet have experienced throughout my pregnancy to a particular pair of shoes.

 

My Nike Air Max Thea trainers perfectly suited the sport-lux trend this year, meaning I could get away with wearing them with all but the dressiest items in my wardrobe. They’re not available in all black now, but the white-soled versions are just as chic.

Now my big toes have nearly come through the uppers, and the heel linings have almost worn away, I thought it was time to replace my beloved footwear with something suitable for an aspiring MILF.

Reluctant to hang up my own personal style on the door of the labour ward, I thought now was the time to treat myself to a somewhat blingy early Christmas present.

Time to graduate into a different colourway of my favourite comfortable shoes: Bronze/Black Air Max Thea.

I hope these will encourage me to get out and lose the baby weight. Maybe I won’t be so eager to get back into my heels now…

Which were your favourite shoes during pregnancy? Let me know in the comments or on FacebookInstagram or Twitter.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

CRAFTY SHOE GIFTS

Do you have a friend, relation or partner who loves to make stuff?

When everyone is hibernating between Christmas and Spring, they’ll love the satisfaction of making a pair of slippers by hand.

I’ve sourced a diverse range of kits you can buy your loved one, so that they can make their own footwear.

 

Joe’s Toes (love the name), offers an excellent selection of slipper kits, from ridiculously adorable knit your own baby slippers…

…to plain or fun adults’ options in a selection of colours.

 

Stitch & Story have created this excellent knitted slipper kit, which provides everything you need (including needles), to create your own slippers. It’s aimed at beginners, so the recipient doesn’t need to be a knitting whizz already.

 

I Can Make Shoes is a company which provides workshops on shoe-making to the public. If your budget won’t stretch to a gift voucher for a course, you can buy this slipper making kit for your favourite person instead.

 

Prym sell the components you need to make your own espadrilles. You can start by using the base fabrics they sell, and when you get more expert, buy another pair of soles and make your own uppers (perhaps out of something cosy).

 

If simplicity of aesthetic suits your recipient’s taste, Iriss of Penzance sells reasonably-priced kits for making these warm felted slippers.

 

If you know someone who would prefer to learn the craft of slipper making with like-minded people, you could send them to the Learn to Wet Felt Slippers course at the Fluff-a-torium in Dorking, Surrey…

 

…or one of the excellent courses run by moccasin expert Rose Choules in Bude, Cornwall. I’m sorely tempted by this Baby Moccasin Workshop.

 

I hope my guide makes your Christmas shopping a little easier. Let me know how your gift is received in the comments or on FacebookInstagram or Twitter.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

DANCE ALL NIGHT

  • Multi hued
    Multi hued
    These sleek points remind me of the black scratch paper I used to play with as a child. A subtle way to add colour interest to wearable black.
  • Sharp snake
    Sharp snake
    Snake and jewels together should be OTT, but the subtlety of the greyscale colour palette keeps the look of these flats very elegant.
  • Glaminal
    Glaminal
    Not everyone is a fan of classic leopard print, but if ever there was a time to try the furry feline look, it would be during the party season. Give it a shot?
  • Slipper style
    Slipper style
    The smoking slipper gets a glam twist, with the diamanté-embellished gold heel, and tassel cuffs. Navy gives it a richness which black can't emulate.
  • Glitter ball
    Glitter ball
    Try this new take on a ballet pointe shoe for a pretty somewhat Cinderella-inspired look. Equally delightful with cropped tuxedo trousers or a dress.
  • Dorothy feet
    Dorothy feet
    Red patent pumps can add happiness to your outfits all year-round, so these would make a good investment. Also the perfect Christmas shoe shade.

 

Ah it’s December already! Time for partying with friends, family and colleagues. I shall be your Christmas shoe fairy today, and help to save you from foot pain.

As much as we tell ourselves that alcohol will numb the burning pain in the balls of our feet, sometimes the wisest decision is to wear footwear we’ll be comfortable in all night.

How lovely to be the smug one at the end of the evening, who can keep her shoes on for the journey home.

I often share secrets about how to select comfortable heels, but today I’m giving you Russell & Bromley’s finest selection of the easy option: flats!

Click through the slide show and let me know which you’ll opt for in the comments or on FacebookInstagram or Twitter.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

PRESENT LIST PT 1

  • Glam adventures
    Glam adventures
    There's nothing cooler than these comfortable hiking-style boots for wearing the outdoors trend, in a luxurious street-styled way.
  • Rose-tinted view
    Rose-tinted view
    Gibson shoes have been making a big come-back. This twist on the classic gives the cuteness of pastel pink, with a Geisha-style elevated flatform.
  • High and mighty
    High and mighty
    Everyone needs a go-anywhere boot. This style offers the height and stability of the 8cm heel, comfort of a shearling collar, and grip of the camo sole.
  • Simply sleek
    Simply sleek
    These beautifully shaped lace-ups are in delicate pale grey patent leather, with a classy dip-dyed effect on the toe. The crepe sole gives a casual feel.
  • Comfy classic
    Comfy classic
    To pull on as you're running out of the door, opt for these traditional-looking brogue boots. The rich tan colour brings warmth to dark winter outfits.
  • Party style
    Party style
    Show up to festive events in these metallic patent flats, and walk home with your shoes still on. Ribbons give a feminine contrast to the sharp pointed toe.
  • Hug me boots
    Hug me boots
    These are the ultimate cold weather boots. In warm grey sheepskin with a lightweight but grippy sole, are they just too beautiful to wear in the snow?
  • Stand-out slip-on
    Stand-out slip-on
    Sometimes in the winter we want a chunkier shoe style. The bulbous toe and chunky crepe sole are contrasted by soft merino wool embroidery.

 

Have you written your letter to Father Christmas/your family/your partner yet?

 

Italian brand AGL (Attilio Giusti Leombruni) is run by the three Giusti sisters, who are third generation shoe-makers. These ladies know good shoe-making, and have a fondness for the luxurious and unexpected.

Have a browse through the slide-show, and you might just find something to add to your Christmas list (or that you can’t wait ’til Christmas for!).

Let me know which style you can’t live without in the comments or on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment