Prompt: What piece of clothing did you wear again and again all through the year? Why? Is it all worn out? Are you going to replace it or keep wearing it?
It’s not a surprise to anyone that knows me that I love my clothes. But the one piece I’ve worn out this year is not actually a piece of clothing, it is a pair of shoes. Getting office-appropriate shoes is hard for me because I have a wide toe-box. And more and more, designers are limiting their wide-shoe selection. When I can find a nice pair to go with any office outfit, I grab on and wear them into the ground. I’ve reached the age where I wear heels often enough that I’m done with finding mediocre shoes that “will stretch”. I’m now at an age where I can accept that most designers will never stretch enough to “make do”.
And then I found The Pair. Chocolate brown with a subtle texture. Pointy toe, but not too exagherated. Mid-height heel to go with most of my pant lengths. In stock in an 8W, and perfect fit from Day 1.
The tip of the point is now worn down, and the fabric has worn off most of the brown. The same wear is showing on the inside near my big toe. The rubber stopper on the end of the heel has worn through and I can see the tip of the nail head (which also makes this slippery to wear). All traction on the bottom has worn off, and the inside lining is no longer independently attached to the sole. These shoes are no longer functional as shoes. I think there’s even a hole at the bottom to let rain in. They literally no longer perform the function a shoe is meant to. They will be thrown out in January.
And yet, despite looking for replacements as early as over the summer, I have yet to find a replacement. The designer, Nine West, no longer makes this shoe. In fact, this 8W might have been a magical unicorn because wides are not stocked in their store, in Macy’s, or online. I’ve turned to others for help, but with no luck. For example, Ivanka Trump has a line of shoes at Nordstroms. It’s a flat leather, pointy toe, and a slightly shorter heel. It’s even available in the perfect chocolate brown. But she only makes wide shoes in 1 or 2 colors. I got the pair in black, but it simply isn’t made in the brown or in other fun colors. The same is true for many designers.
Don’t get me wrong, I’ve been able to find other shoes in other colors and styles to work. But this simple brown bump for my strange feet will be my unicorn. And when I see it, and it fits and the stars align and angels sing out from above about the beauty of my toe cleavage, I will get them. They might not even be on sale when I do.