A couple of weeks ago I received this email from one of my Style Class attendees.
“My biggest headache is choosing comfortable (yet smart) footwear for my commute. It’s such a faff having to carry a pair of heels and switching around! I find I opt for trousers and boots more often than not but it’s rather limiting!”
Trousers and boots are indeed a winning combination, but to be able to pop on a summer dress or a skirt and top combination with a smart pair of comfortable shoes, should not be a big ask.
I know that this particular problem affects most working women on a regular basis. Of course, the type of shoe that you will find most comfortable depends on many factors, not least the shape of your feet.
The good news is that some footwear brands have been listening to our request for comfortable, smart and stylish shoes. In today’s blog, I’ve concentrated on three major high street brands that do this particularly well, but there are lots more out there. I’d love for you to leave a comment here on the blog and share your best brands for ‘walkable’, smart shoes.
I’m definitely having a love affair with flats these days, thanks to the trendy and interesting styles that are now widely available. I’m loving loafers (thanks to Gucci), brogues and high fronted slip-ons which are all suitable for day-long wear and walking around London. I particularly love the look of a flat shoe with a slightly cropped trouser leg, again something that is all over the high street.
However, if you like to wear a heel for work (or god forbid, the dress code dictates that you must), here are my picks of the season.
When I was a wee lass, my mum would take me to Clarks and they would turn us away because my feet were so narrow, they didn’t actually make any shoes that would fit me. Thankfully, the situation has massively improved and they cater really well for narrow as well as wide feet, the prices are great and they do half sizes. They have Cushion Plus™ technology for comfort as well as rubber soles (so less likely to slip in wet weather/spilt coffee…). If you haven’t been to Clarks since you were a child, it’s time to revisit!
Traditionally, this brand was all about the trainer and the ugly flat shoe. Nowadays they do a great range of heels that are very comfortable and office appropriate. Their unique technology (breathability, perforated sole and memory foam) means all their styles are totally wearable.
Here are my favourites but do check out the website, there are lots more worth trying…and they do half sizes!
Marks and Spencer
Insolia® technology, (which I believe is now in all their heeled shoes), redistributes your weight away from the balls of your feet. This reduces the pressure in your foot as well as increasing ankle stability, making their shoes perfect for all-day-wear. On top of this, half sizes are available so you are more likely to find your perfect fit.
*I am not paid for recommending any of these bands. I genuinely rate them!*