Friday, April 26, 2013

Miller Time Friday - Sunny, with a chance of shoes...

Happy Friday! 

Many thanks to all those who chimed in with words of encouragement as I try valiantly to "stick to the plan!"  Or perhaps, simply shop more mindfully. 

In that spirit, I decided that I must stop talking about getting out all of my things and ACTUALLY get out all of my things.  Today, that involved shoes. 

I don't have enough room to store my shoes and boots from all four seasons together.  So down into the hellhole that is my crawl spaces to get the spring/summer shoe bin.  I thought that would help settle in my mind what the gaps were in my shoe wardrobe.

First I went through all of my fall/winter footwear.  Never wore most of it, though that was in large part due to my personal circumstances after Christmas.  I certainly was not going to give away or throw out something out for that reason alone.

However, I was going to rid myself of things that were

a) uncomfortable
b) too high for me
c) simply old and worn out and worst of all
d) never really fit me. 

Now you know why I order and try on and send back.  I find trying on things in the boutiques here very misleading.  If I bring it home and wear it for an hour or two around the house, I know that it is good or bad. 

So a lot of shoes left, because at present, it is not my intention to work in a 9 to 5 Monday to Friday corporate environment again.  So if any of you are a size 6 and would love a pair of nude Ivanka Trumps for spring or lovely Cole Haan black patent leather peep toe high heel slingback sandals for all 4 seasons, let me know - you can have them for the price of postage!  The rest have gone to other homes and to charity!

And then I went through the summer shoes.  Again, worn out things were thrown out, similar criteria used above.

Here is what's left and it is still a LOT!



I have two pairs of pumps - one black, one nude left, the sequined pumps I bought last fall and my new Tory Burch wedges.  A lovely pair of tortoise shell/leopard print wedge sandals from Pliner and another pair of leopard print peep toe slingbacks from Nine West.  That is the really dressy stuff I can pull out for meetings between me, myself and I.  I realized I have 13 pairs of ballet flats.  Yikes!


And then all of the sandals, sneakers and flip flops!  I could not believe how many pairs of sandals I have, most of them quite pristine because a) the summer is so short around here and b) most of them were too casual to be worn to my office.  I realized I do not need gold or platinum sandals this summer - got 'em.  I have navy, royal blue, yellow, an orangey yellow, cream, ivory, black as well.  I am set (although I did notice that I do not have chambray blue espadrilles!).  It's like my summer footwear knew I would leave the corporate world before I did!

I did note some particular favourite that I will make a big effort to plan outfits around:



The espadrilles I bought in Normandy in 2008.


Wendy, that tortoiseshell bracelet would match me perfectly....
The Pliners.  I have been mostly wearing these with black.  Can I treat them as a summer neutral? 




The Vince Camuto rose gold crystal sandals.  One of the blouses that I bought from Nougat London is the palest peachy pink, and I think it will go great with this.

Looking at my shoes, there is nothing there I would not wear now.  There is still too much, but I have decided that I do not need anything, though I might benefit from some walking sandals.  I will likely do another purge and weed out more at the end of the summer that do not get worn.  I also think that my feet are getting wider as I age, which is why I am finding some of my shoes uncomfortable.  Anyone else over 40 finding that?

I can see the benefit of a list and a plan.  When I see all of these shoes, besides the obvious embarassment that I have so many shoes, I am also struck by the fact that if I had gotten them all out sooner, I would never have thought that I SHOULD have purchased those marina espadrilles this year.  So the inventory I shall start immediatement!  And then I need to shake it up and put together some outfits and see if I have a colour story (cause usually it feels like I have a "paint thrown up against the wall" story!  :-)

In honour of the shoe follies, I propose we mix up some Blue Suede Shoes cocktails:

Ingredients
  • 1/2 oz Southern Comfort
  • 1/2 oz Creme de Banane
  • 1/2 oz Blue Curacao

Directions
Pour ingredients over ice. Shake and strain.

Short and sweet!  

I hope you are all having a wonderful day and if nothing else, are getting a chuckle out of the fickleness that is me!  Have a great day and stay safe out there!

64 comments:

  1. Blogger hates me these days, I left a comment this morning to your last post but it didn't want to publish, no matter how many times I hit on Publish!
    Isn't it amazing how many shoes we have that we don't know we have? And counting can be really a surprise!
    I am glad that you feel all set in terms of shoes for the summer. I am trying to control how many shoes I add each season to my shoe closet but it seems I can't resist sandals, that's the tougher bunch. I usually resist JCrew shoes until they are very cheap or I loose interest in them (for example, I wanted the Darby suede loafers but I waited and waited for them to go on sale and now I don't want them anymore).
    I love the Seville chambray wedges but I fond closed espadrilles tough to wear in the summer (and heavy). I will get them though if they come down enough.

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    1. HI Ema! Blogger has been cruel to me lately as well! I have decided that I will need a couple of pairs of shoes or boots this coming fall for around the house and which are dressy casual and honestly, it is still weeks before sandals come out here. I only anticipate moving into ballets next week! So when I think of that, i think 'hold on old girl!" I am seriously thinking of the new tunic dress - I do not have one and it is something I could start wearing very soon and I did like the pring on you and M!

      I am with you on the closed espadrilles - mine only get a workout in the evenings and usually until June - then I am all, toes, toes, toes!

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  2. I'm so glad you've shared your shoes, 'cos now I don't feel like such a shoe hoarder!!
    My feet are getting wider with each passing year. I always thought it was due to yoga, but perhaps it is just age!
    Those tortoiseshell shoes would look great with some nice tortoiseshell jewellery!
    I'm going to get my winter shoes and boots out next week, so will take some pics and do a boot post.

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    1. Ruth - I think it is age! I am still looking at the Jack Rogers sandals as I see they have some wides! I may wait until I hopefully hit Maine this summer and try some on in person though to be sure! Oh - can't wait to see your boot and shoe post! It is kind of fun that you are on the opposite weather!

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    2. I agree with Ruth -- it is great to see someone else's shoe closet! I love shoes -- they look reliably good notwithstanding weight fluctuations, which I definitely experienced over the last 3 years of getting pregnant and having kids. I think you are very right to weed out anything that is uncomfortable or worn out -- it is hard sometimes to be objective about it.

      I love the tortoise shell slingbacks and think they would look brilliant with khaki/stone/white bottoms or dress.

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    3. Thanks Michelle! Shoes are my friends!Have now cleaned and packed away the winter shoes and boots! I love to put them away!

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  3. So funny,i also have plenty summer shoes,even though the summer here is pretty short too.
    Yesteday i got the Seville chambray wedges and they will be my first jcrew shoe. I also got a few things for our upcoming vacation in Italy next month,but i resisted the flower and butterfly hype:)

    We have spring festival at preschool tomorrow,but the weather is supposed to be rainy and cold.It will be outside,so I guess that calls for Hunters and my Fieldjacket.

    Have a great weekend!

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    1. Oh Ina! You have to let me know about the shoes in Italy! ALl of my flat, flat sandals are a complete homage to those sexy italian women who wear the little flats with beads, etc!

      Have fun at the spring festival!

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  4. I like those leopard wedges a lot. I'd definitely wear them with more than black.

    I have 21 pairs of shoes, including flip flops, hiking, and biking shoes, but not including slippers or climbing shoes :) But, I haven't really hit the sweet spot. I have some shoes that I never wear, and I also have some gaps.

    In the last few years, I have been focussing on shoes because I realized that I had so many items in my wardrobe that I wanted to wear but didn't have the right shoes for. That has improved, but I'm not all the way there yet.

    Funny that today should be a shoe day chez Wendy, because I've been cleaning up and polishing my shoes for the season change - putting away the boots, bringing out the flats. We splurged on some really nice shoe care products and wow, I cannot believe how nice my shoes look. There's another motivation to not have many shoes - the more you have, the more there is to take care of (or not take care of, as the case may be). But then again, shoes can really make an outfit and I do envy those who always have the "right pair."

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    1. Abby I need to splurge on those shoe care products as well! SOme of mine were looking ratty! That is how (except for all the ballets!) that I ended up with certain shoes - I needed this for that event, etc, etc. But really, if I did not buy another pair until Fall, I would be absolutely fine. I need to wear all of these and wear them well and often!!!

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  5. Yowsers what a huge selection of summer shoes! I love the torty wedges, and your flats are all so beautiful. What does blue curacao actually taste of?

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    1. Tabs - I have never tasted it! I am kind of scared of it because it glows! We will have to wait for GF to wake up and tell us!!!

      There are too many shoes! Can you tell I found my job stressful for the last few years. A lot of those shoes were bought on lunch hours when I would flee my office and go for a "visit" to our local shoe boutique which has very nice, and sadly expensive (but not Jimmy Choo expensive) shoes!

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    2. Hello Gels. Would you believe that I grew up, in part, on Curacao where they created the stuff, at Landhuis Chobolobo. Good Curacao liqueur is made from a real permutation of Valencia oranges, known locally as the laraha, and should not be day-glo. The clear, untinted stuff is the most versatile if you are not a tropical bartender. Tabs, it tastes a bit like a cross between the orange flavour in a choc orange and San Pellegrino chinotto, if you've ever tried that. Not as sweet as the choc, not quite as "herby medicinal" as the Italian soda.

      WMM, strongly suggest not mixing with creme de banane, which has "sickly" risk written on it. Much better for ex. with vodka, or just for you, in a pineapple juice based drink, where the blue stuff, in moderation, turns a lovely aquamarine colour that's still drinkable.

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    3. I see a trip to the liquor store in order today since it is one of my two "drink" days of the week!

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  6. I like to think I am on a firm foundation when considering my widening feet. Shoes are hard to resist. Especially cute little summer sandals. Like handbags they are hard to resist.

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    1. BB - you are a smartass - too funny!!! At least you have great weather that justifies this many (or more) summer shoes!!!

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  7. I need to get the shoes out too. Mine aren't exactly in storage, but the previous owner of my closet put in strange shoe shelves on the sides that I cannot see into very well. So I can never really see what I have. I need to take stock and purge. First to go should be old flip-flops. Next should be ballet flats, which I like in theory but I never wear them. I'm feeling inspired to do something about it now, thanks! :) I love your Normandy espadrilles and would like to see what outfits you put together with these.

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    1. HI Cate - I too would like to see some outfits with these! Now I have to get my butt in gear and try and make some! I have hardly worn them!

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    2. Cate, I was so excited about WMM's tortoise wedges (can you tell I wanted that JC bracelet), I gave her a whole list of outfits below. I think several of those could work with her stripey 'drilles too. Also curious to see what Gayle matches the JC multi-stripe shoes with in the next "style (ahem, mash-up) guide". That might fuel some ideas.

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    3. Great ideas you gave her! Those are fabulous sandals.

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    4. it is funny, I have had those sandals for 2 years! I needed GF to send me this list a LONG time ago!!!

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  8. Your ballet flat collection is so beautiful, like a jewelry box of shoes! The tortoise sandals are killer excellent, you can wear them with anything.
    Like Abby I spent some time yesterday cleaning my winter shoes before putting them on their shelves in my storage closet. Especially the boots, I clean them and then stuff them with tissue (though I'd love to have some of those cedar boot things to help them keep their shape). At one time I had way more shoes, and just this week I brought two pairs of too-high summer Chie's to consignment. Had to get down to nine pairs for summer because that's what my regular closet has room for! I also have nine pairs for winter including my boots but at one time I had much more.
    Happy Miller Time Wendy!!

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    1. Hi Dani! I think I need less shoe room and then I wouldn't keep so many! I still have to clean my winter ones before I put them away for the winter! 9 is a good amount! I am trying to recall if you have any flip flops or capris or are they all heeled?

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    2. No flip-flops or anything flat, they really do hurt my feet. My heeled espadrilles are for every day, my only flats those sneakers. Also I can't wear shoes that go in between the big toe and second toe with a piece of fabric or leather so that cuts out a big category of summer shoes right there (including flip flops). I did buy a pair of flip-flops for my swim bag but never wore them, out they went.
      Of course I also love being barefoot (but NOT in the kitchen) ;), one of the reasons I like classical stretch and pilates is that I don't have to wear shoes!!

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    3. DaniBP, your use of the word "CollectIon" has me thinking. People collect all kinds of things that are beautiful just to look at, that don't have any practical use. I think we all feel obligated to wear all of our shoes (and our clothes too), but I don't think it's that terrible to own something that is just pretty to look at even if it has no practical use. The only bad thing about shoes as art is if they are hidden in a dark closet and you never see them. Maybe Tim Gunn & and Project Runway are onto something with their Accessory Wall :)

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    4. I like barefoot, too! ANd Cate - I think Jenna and Tim's accessory wall led to my little shoe wall in the backroom. WHat you can't see is up above it are all of Barry's shoes!

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  9. Wow, that's an impressive collection of shoes. I have a very small shoe collection, I've given away everything that's not comfortable. In summer, only ballet flats and wedges (Camper Damas 21573) work for me. Further to my comment yesterday on the app, I use Stylebook. Knowing what I have at a glance helps me avoid multiple purchases (well except for navy sweaters and striped shirts). At first I used a spreadsheet but I can't connect what I am wearing to the names in my spreadsheet (what the heck is a Cecelia or a Bettina or a Calista or a Bria cami)? So I needed something that will allow me to use pictures.

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    1. Marie - I think I am visual like you are - out of sight, out of my mind!!!

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    2. Marie, did it take a long time to get your photos into stylebook? And do you find the app really is useful? I've toyed with the thought of getting it.

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    3. Hi Abby, I do not have time to take photos of everything I have, so right now I am just adding as I wear them. There are a lot of functionalities which I don't use (creating outfits, style inspiration & shopping). I just want to keep track of what I have & what I wear. Very helpful is the closet stats which shows me what I don't wear (must give away), the packing list & the calendar with pictures of items I wore that day. I avoid looking at the closet stats on closet count and total value of closet. For $4 I think the app is worth having.

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  10. SHOED THING Well WMM, now that I've sorted your cocktail to my liking, let's move on to the subject of those wonderful DP tortoise wedges. I would definitely treat them as the summer version of wearing "neutral" leopard. Some ideas:
    - Blue chambray, red/ bright or khaki or black capris or skinnies
    - White top, black bottom, scarf, shoes, red bag if you have, your H&M anorak might also work here
    - Black top/ sweater, jeans or blue-green skinnies, tan bag
    - White top, khaki bottom, maybe your new skirt depending on neutral hue
    - With a combo of easy blues top and bottom or a grey top and lighter wash jeans
    - Your white jeans
    - Denim jacket, striped neutral tee, black skinny pants or skirt, tan bag, and a scarf with either coral or even floral hues in it
    - Cobalt blue and military green + shoes
    - Ines: Black jacket, white tee, khaki bottom, shoes

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    1. As Dani says, that collection of ballet slippers is like a jewel box, and makes me a bit gleeful from here. NOW I understand your where to start challenges with the inventory (condos have NO crawl space and tight spots for racks/ shelves). I think it is a very positive idea to live with what you have and see what gets worn, you are innately drawn to. So you don't feel deprived maybe add either the Jack Rogers or the walking sandals? And given how you were about the Tory wedges and your French espadrilles, instead of stress-shopping, try to pick one special pair a season a/o trip that really makes your heart sing. There will always be more shoes... ;-)
      PS Thank you for sharing, luff the DPs, happy Friday.
      PPS Your espadrilles remind me of the JC stripey pumps that came out this week (I think). Can be surprising how many times we already have something evocative of what the retailers are trying to foist on us, buy now.

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    2. GF - you are a marvel! I am printing this out and trying some of these combos this weekend!!! I was struck by your last thought last night after i had gotten it all out, as really, J Crew has simply been revisiting a lot of its items for the last few years! The Jack Rogers are a definite maybe for me as folks swear by their comfort!!

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    3. "definite maybe" :)

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  11. Thanks for sharing those pictures Wendy, I feel much better! I had many, many shoes and I was wearing most of them only a couple of times a year. I think I have half my shoe closet, I still have a couple of them to be sold and yet, I think I have too many of them... But I so love shoes... I was just wondering, is it a women thing???

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    1. My husband has a lot, but not like me!!! I love shoes! Shoes are the perfect friend as they don't mind if you gain or lose weight!!!

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  12. I loved to have a peek into your shoe collection, they look so pretty, at first I thought it was a picture from magazine. You know, one of those 'how the fabulous ones live' articles :)
    I have plenty of shoes but for some reason I don't feel guilty about it or wasteful. I am with cate here, shoes are more sculptural, therefore I can think of them almost like art objects, or so I foolyself, lol. Happy weekend to you ! Cocktails always help.

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    1. AJC - you and Cate have helped my guilt. It is funny though, I really realized that I was not buying shoes for the life I was living, but for the life I wanted to be living and am now!

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    2. Always happy to enable! :)

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  13. Looks like you do have room for these shoes so enjoy! I am celebrating Topsiders with NO socks for the first time today, for my annual journey 2 hours north for garden stuff. Then time for some wine-- no blue liquors, thank you.

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    1. Lane - nosy here - where do you go? We stopped into the nursery after I went to the doctor this a.m. and bought two bowls of pansies for my two big pots on the front steps. I also bought 3 little pots of basil to start growing inside here, as I LOVE the smell. Today is more yard work - I am still cleaning up beds, but it is a glorious day to do it!

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  14. No flats here. A day in flat sandals a few years ago caused six months in a sleep cast and 2 years of phys therapy. Even my bedroom slippers have 2" wedges.

    Of course that didn't cut down on my shoe buying, just shifted the focus.

    My shoe weakness - well, one of them - is cute evening sandals. Still holding on to some naked Lilly things, pea green straps, tiny pink leather bow, kitten heels. Ya buy good, it lasts.

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    1. Fred - you are right! ANd not only that: they tend to be more timeless than the mass market stuff!! Oh you gotta post a pic of those puppies on your blog for me to see!

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  15. Hi WMM, your shoe collection is lovely and colourful! I just tidied up the floor of my closet yesterday, ie. my shoes, but I still have to clean and put away the winter boots.
    By the way, I was watching Elementary last night (Jonny Lee Miller!) when Sherlock mentioned sea monkeys for some reason. Because of you, I knew what they were!

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    1. I laughed at that because of WMM too, Patricia!

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    2. Hi GF, by the way, the linen skirt from Coldwater Creek arrived yesterday. It has a polyester lining - I'm going to see how that goes in the summer heat, might not be as bad as a polyester-lined dress. Otherwise, I'll have to investigate re-lining à la Dani. I like the shape, colour is good too (similar to linen pants I have). At the same time I ordered a navy linen jacket on sale - $30 - and I really like that too, so thank you for the link!

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    3. Oh I missed it - I keep forgetting to tape it! You will now see sea monkeys popping up everywhere! Is the law of the universe! And so glad about that skirt and jacket!

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    4. Wendy you can watch it online at GlobalTV I believe (day after it airs for a week or so.)

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    5. Patricia, boo on the poly lining. But like BR they do a lot of poly among the cotton and silk things, so not really shocked. Glad the jacket worked. I am sized out, but know a few people who are big CC fans.

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  16. Your shoes are great - I especially like all of the jewel-coloured ballet flats!

    I have to do an inventory of my shoes too, I would say I have probably 12-13 pairs total? I do have to get a pair of summer shoes (probably espadrilles) and a new pair of ballet flats, but we shall see! Have a great weekend!

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    1. Oh you have so much more self-control than I do! Although so far I have only bought the $19 peach Joe fresh sneakers!

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  17. I love the Pliners, you could definitely treat those as a neutral. I laughed at your note to actually get out your summer things. I have to do the same this weekend. I've been picking through for vacation and then my business trip South but spring has arrived in Calgary and now the real flip can begin.

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    1. It is so sunny here! Have a couple of errands to run after lunch and then off to do yardwork! We are expacting sun and warmer temperatures, so I may be able to join the the Lane "no socks" club! xoxo - I would LOVE to see your shoe closet!!!

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  18. Love that trio of sandals that are so individual but will go with so much - a triple threat, love the colour of those crystally ones!

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  19. Wow, you do have an assortment. Now, you are right, you need to remove the uncomfortable ones. I don't know if our feet change, or if our tolerance for discomfort does. I certainly suffered through many uncomfortable shoes, and I won't do that anymore. I always enjoy you blog WMM- a chuckle, indeed! Enjoy your cocktail. It sounds great!

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    1. Thanks Knityarns! Comfort is everything!

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  20. I'm ashamed to say that my number (including slippers and flip flops) is probably north of 100. I agree with ajc about looking them as art. The best thing about shoes is even when my weight fluctuates they still fit and they don't go out of style as fast as clothes. That's why we build up such collections. They may not be something you want to wear all day, but you can wear your little art object to dinner!

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    1. SHopping Celle - no shame here! If you add in my winter shoes and boots and slippers, I am there with you! I think that for me the key now is getting complete value and comfort. I just gave away some shoes that I bought that even as I bought them I knew that they were either uncomfortable or slightly too big. But they were on sale. Sigh. Never again! I have decided that sales don't really work for me, as I tend to buy things I never would buy. I don;t mind a friends and family event on regular priced items, but have decided that if I wouldn't pay full price, I shouldn't be buying it!!

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  21. Oh my, what a collection! I love the range of ballet flats that you have, and very envious of the shelving you have for your shoe collection. I have a large collection of shoes but because we don't have much storage space, most of it is crammed into the two crawl spaces we have near the roof.

    The Pliner tortoise wedges are gorgeous - they are most definitely a neutral that can go with practically any outfit.

    Hope you have a wonderful weekend!

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    1. It is hard when you can't see or get to them all, I think! I honestly forgot about some of the shoes I had until I got them out! Thanks for helping make me braver about the tortoise wedges! I hope you have a wonderful weekend, too!

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  22. My feet have always been wide. I haven't noticed any difference as I've gotten older but I do place comfort before fashion more than my younger days. More than, but not always. I am working toward always.

    We wear the same size but I'll let someone else claim your shoes, there's a reason why I've been nicknamed Imelda. Sad but true.

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    1. They call me Imelda in my house, too... :-( I feel your pain!

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  23. Love the sandals. I also secretly like some old George Jones songs.

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Kindness is a virtue...