Shoes are tough for me since I have always had somewhat messed up feet. I had surgery on my left foot in January 2016 and while this made my left foot more normally shaped, I have had some issues with pain in that foot since then. Wearing heels on a daily basis is just not in the cards for me. I’ve never been a heels-on-an-average-day type person, but I still have about 5 pairs of heels or heeled sandals sitting in my closet that I can wear to weddings and such. Do I need that many? Definitely not.
My feet are also wide, which makes shoe shopping difficult. And since I tend to do most of my shopping online, I have purchased quite a few shoes that don’t fit exactly right. I’ve been trying to upgrade my shoe collection since my surgery, both to help with the pain in my left foot and to try to prevent the need for surgery in my right. Shoes are so darn expensive though! I really should have a few basic pairs that are high quality, nice looking, versatile, and comfortable and wear those all the time, but I struggle to do this. This is partially because I have a hard time spending a lot of money on any one item, and it’s also hard to tell in advance how comfortable or wearable a shoe will be before you own it. I have bought about 6 pairs of Clarks shoes in the last year and thrown out cheaper, less supportive shoes, but I still own and wear a bunch of shoes that are probably not great for my feet.
For me, my struggle with shoes mirrors my struggle with possessions in general. I want high-quality items, not too many of them, and ones that work well that I love. There is also a tension between comfort/practicality and fashion/looks. Ah well. I said that I would be going through my shoes and getting rid of some this week and I did. Here are the shoes that were in my closet at the start of the week:
- 4 pairs of heels (two black, nude, silver)
- 7 sandals (two flip flops, tan sandals, brown sandals, metallic sandals, white heeled sandals, silver strappy heeled sandals)
- 7 boots (black high boots, black low boots, black heeled boots, tan heeled boots, rain boots, hiking boots, snow boots)
- 3 athletic shoes (bike shoes (which clip into the pedals), two pairs of sneakers)
- 8 other casual shoes (red Clarks, brown leather Clarks, black Croc flats, silver Sperry flats, Converse, gray Clarks walking sneakers, black Clarks flats, other brownish casual Clarks, brown Merrels for outdoorsy stuff)
A grand total of…. 31 pairs. Four more than I had last time I counted! This week, I decided to donate the black heeled boots, brown heeled boots, one pair of black heels, the Converse (which makes me sad but they hurt my feet too much), the Sperry flats, one pair of flip flops and the silver strappy sandals.
That’s 7 gone, and down to 24 pairs. I brought one pair of sneakers and the Crocs to school to be my gym and shower shoes respectively, so they will live in my locker there now. One pair of flip flops and the Merrels are on our screened in porch to take the dog out, depending on the weather. Three of the remaining shoes are functional and only worn during specific times/tasks (snow boots, hiking boots, bike shoes). So I now really have 17 pairs in my closet that I will wear day-to-day.
I think 8 would be a more reasonable number. If I could just have 8, I would choose a black flats, black heels, comfortable but stylish full coverage shoes for winter (these have been hard for me to find), black ankle boots, black tall boots, tan sandals, dressier sandals, casual walking shoes. This will be my goal shoe wardrobe for 2019, when I can shop again. Ultimately, I’d like to replace the black flats, which are too big, with a pair that fit better, the three pairs of tan, brown, and metallic sandals with one nicer tan pair, and find a good pair of dressier winter shoes that are not boots. Then I have to convince myself to get rid of the other perfectly good pairs once they wear out and not replace them. Baby steps!