The Ugly Shoe

The Ugly Shoe Header

Since we’ve crossed into 2014, there has been a ton of chatter about new trends, new styles and new designs that are gaining traction for the upcoming seasons.  As far as trends go, I wouldn’t necessarily call myself a HUGE risk taker, but I’m willing to push the envelope at times in the name of personal expression and individuality.  For me, part of every trend is a balance between aesthetics and function.  The nerd in me breaks it down like so:

1) Does this trend appeal to me visually?

  • If NO, move on.  Find something else.
  • If YES, proceed to the next question.

2) Is there a place/function for this trend in my current life?

  • If NO, stop right here.
  • If YES, then green light to purchase and be trendy.

One trend that no matter how hard I try I truly CANNOT get on board with, is this ugly shoe thing going on lately.  I’m referring to the return of Birkenstock-esque footwear in plastic/leather/fur, in addition to the resurgence of clunky soles, lug bottoms and essentially anything that make your feet look like they belong to a long-lost cousin of Fred Flintstone.  Luxury brands and top designers are touting their ugly shoe wares and what shocks me, is that people are actually spending upwards of $1000 to buy them!

As somewhat of a luxury shoe fiend, I am all for investing in beautiful shoes.  The “ugly shoe” was created by designers as a shift away from the precipitous, impractical 5+ inch heel (occasionally, with added platform) to more practical and comfortable territory.  That notion, I can respect.  But why does practical have to equate to so much ugly!?  Again, this is wholly my opinion and I know there are folks out there that can see the beauty in these ugly shoes and pull them off seamlessly.  I’m talking to you, Alexa Chung.  Seriously, she makes anything look cool.

But, tell me, how is THIS practical!?

Balenciaga buckle boot

Wouldn’t a chic ballet flat, or even more masculine brogue be just as comfortable, lighter weight on the foot and 1000x more flattering? Don’t the cutouts leave your feet and ankles cold?  Perhaps, Balenciaga just didn’t account for #polarvortexproblems.

Behold, the “IT” shoe of Spring 2014.  Isabel Marant, seriously!?  You can do better than this.

Isabel Marant Holden Slide

If I’m going to walk out of my house in what essentially looks like a gym shower shoe, I know a place where I can buy a pair for under $30.  It’s called Dick’s Sporting Goods.

As they say, “Beauty is in the eye of the beholder.”  In the case of the “ugly shoe” trend, I’m turning a blind eye and walking away…  in my classic, pointed-toe, single-sole, high heel pumps.

Are you on board with the “ugly shoe?”  I would love to hear your rants and/or raves!