Thoughts About Shoes

When I was younger I was a voracious manga reader, it took me less than an hour to read a volume and my concentration could get me through multiple volumes in a day. I probably couldn’t remember most of what I read now, but when I read Hana Yori Dango (Boys Over Flowers) a quote from one of the characters has always stuck with me.

“Good shoes take you to good places.”
I find it difficult to buy things just because they’re pretty, not to say I don’t ever do it, but I don’t own a lot of accessories for this reason. However, beautiful shoes have a great loophole in that they are inherently functional. I think that’s why a lot of women like shoes, they’re beautiful and despite often absolutely destroying our feet we can still class them as a functional and useful purchase.

This particular pair; velvet peep toes with a platform and stack heel, are definitely not a functional and useful purchase but they were an unmissable purchase. They also make my legs look amazing. I think MIU MIU is a beautiful brand, they’re optimistic, fun, glitzy and glam. I’ve been a quite, sparkly eyed admirer of the brand since seeing one of their detachable collars on Tavi Gevinson way back in like 2009 or something. Everything they make looks like it should be in soft focus on a glittery, dream like background and that is absolutely my vibe. All the models should look like Aubrey Beardsly illustrations.

However, retailing at £445, a MIU MIU shoe purchase such as this one was never going to be within my grasp. Not in my current situation for sure. But of course, dear reader, I didn’t get this pair for £445. Due to a beautiful bit of retail pricing glitchery I didn’t even pay 10% of that. So, despite not needing these shoes at all, I laughed and bought them because designer dreams don’t just float in to your life at high street sale price every day.

And they are beautiful. Leather uppers, inner and soles. Deep Bordeaux velvet, so the box says, somewhere between magenta and plum if you ask me. Every detail is precise and every stitch perfect. I need to find some kind of platform in my house where I can elevate them to the highest status. Is it really uncool and common of me to be excited about designer brand purchases? I don’t care. I was laughing my way out of the shop. I’ve mentioned before, about an article I’ve recently read wherein women of a certain wealth and status in New York will not wear black tights, and therefore others seeking to emulate that status will not wear them too. There is a certain type of behaviour, and clothing, for a certain type of person – and even though sumptuary laws are long gone I feel like they are still unspokenly there in signifiers of class.

I wondered, was my behaviour in the shop laughable for “real” designer shoppers? If someone saw me turn over every pair of heels in the sale section until I got to this pair of heels, light up, try them on, smile, get excited about the price, get hyped with the shop assistants and walk up to the till giggling, would they cringe? Would they cringe because it’s just a pair of shoes and we’re all supposed to be cool and not care about how much money were spending when designer brands are concerned? Would they be disgusted that I was happy about getting them for so cheap? I’ll admit, I was a tiny bit embarrassed when I walked out, thinking that I must have identified myself as a scrub, a serf. But that quickly passed when I spent some time strutting around my house and taking pictures of an insanely beautiful pair of shoes. I’d really like to not care about class and status, but as always they are inseparable from fashion.

I know this all seems a bit much for a post that is essentially “I bought some shoes” but I see social strata getting more and more defined these days. I suppose an instagram blogger with 1.5 mil subs wouldn’t post a picture of these shoes because they’re so later than last season, but I’m just hoping they’ll take me to good places.

30s Evening Wear at The Lady Lever Gallery

Seeing dresses on mannequins in a gallery always gives me a strange feeling. We see dresses on mannequins all the time around us in shop windows and yet put them in a gallery and we feel the need to pay close attention to them and take close up shots of them. Would I take close ups of mannequins in Toshop? Probably not, but then the lighting isn’t half as good. It’s all context I suppose.

Continue reading

WWMW: What Would Mayu Wear Week Day 5 – Zara

Today was the first time this week where I screamed “YASSS” while putting together an outfit. I rarely make it into Liverpool Zara because there is always a queue about 20 minutes long minimum for the dressing rooms and tills and I just don’t have the patience for all that. Nonetheless, I am incredibly interested in Zara. Did you know they can take an item down the fashion chain in two weeks? That’s two weeks from seeing it on a designer runway to being on the shop floor. It’s terrifying to be honest.

Continue reading

WWMW: What Would Mayu Wear Week Day 4 – River Island

Another day, another set of outfits. I’ve got back to daily wear for today’s theme. I was actually impressed with River Island’s selection of work wear and accessories because I was able to put together some outfits quite easily all from one shop. I like the consideration had clearly been taken by the designers to match accessories to match each other so that shoppers can easily create well put together outfits.

Continue reading

WWMW: What Would Mayu Wear Week Day 3 – Topshop

It’s actually really hard to buy an entire outfit from the same shop. It’s also definitely not something I’ve ever done myself. I’d rather get my shoes from somewhere that just does shoes and does them well, my clothes from somewhere that does clothes and does them well and my jewellery (which admittedly I don’t buy a lot of) from a very niche seller on etsy, ha!

Continue reading

WWMW: What Would Mayu Wear Week Day 2 – Oasis

I can honestly tell you dear reader that I’ve only ever bought two things from Oasis in my lifetime; a denim dress and a really 80s peplum skirt. I got really excited when they released a collaboration with the V&A but in the end I was really disappointed with the items themselves. I’ve always thought the target demographic was maybe someone more feminine than me, but I wear dresses about 80% of the time so I think we can surmise that they’re basically just not my style. However, I did spot a few pieces that I thought would be great for both Mayu and Nanjo and thankfully created vastly different outfits from the ones I chose yesterday.

Continue reading

WWMW: What Would Mayu Wear Week Day 1 – Warehouse

Happy new year! I spent new years day on the couch eating and watching Atelier on Netflix. I started the series a week or so ago and have been totally obsessive about it ever since. It’s fantastically written, the lighting and staging is my favourite TV lighting I’ve seen in years and I am incredibly invested in the lives and motivations of all the characters. I watched the whole series as quickly as possible and spent the final three episodes crying my eyes out for pretty much the entire time because I was so invested in the choices that the characters were making towards the finale. Atelier is the kind of show I will always go for; it’s about a small group of people who care passionately about their chosen way of life or profession. In this case, Mayuko Tokita is a new employee at the custom made lingerie brand “Emotion” in Ginza.

The two central characters are the new employee Mayuko and the boss of Emotion, Mayumi Nanjo. My favourite thing about the series is the dynamic between them and how they slowly come to have so much understanding and affection for each other. To be honest, the dynamics of the characters in relation to each other are excellently written; nobody has stupid or shallow motivations and while you may not agree with the actions the characters take you can always understand why they’ve made their choices. I honestly wished they were real people.

Another thing that I loved about the show was the style. Obviously, fashion is a key element but the characters have such great and unique style. Shopping around in the sales yesterday I found myself thinking “Ohh Nanjo would totally wear this, Mayu would totally wear this” so what a fun blog feature for this week! If you’re interested in stealing their style on the British high street I’m dedicating my week to what each respective Mayu would wear.

Continue reading