Happy Summer in Arizona Birkenstocks

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I’m planning to wear my Arizona Birkenstocks all over town this summer. I’ve had them a couple weeks now and they have taken a little longer to break in than my older Gizeh Birks that were soft and comfortable right out of the box. I’m breaking them in with the straps set really wide, and then as they get more comfortable will slowly loosen the straps. I got the straps in Black Oiled Leather since I thought they looked a little more polished than the more hippy traditional tan suede, and I am pretty happy with my choice. I’m picturing these both with army pants (pictured above) and with a sleek patterned pencil skirt. Bring on the summer weather!

My No. 6 Clogs

no. 6 clogs

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I’ve had my No. 6 clogs for about a month now and they have become my go to boots – the first shoes I reach for every morning when getting dressed. I am so happy that I made my purchase, and only wish I hadn’t waited 3 years to finally make the purchase.

To save some bucks I purchased my boots secondhand on Ebay. I know some people think used shoes are super gross, but I’ve had really good luck with Ebay shoe purchases. I always wipe down the inside with a clorox wipe, and then spot clean with warm water and some soap, especially scrubbing the bottoms. When these shoes arrived I had a temporary case of buyer’s remorse since they were REALLY beat up. The wood under the toes was completely worn down and wood was chipped on the sides. The leather on the front top and sizes was a scuffed and grey, instead of black. I was really worried I had wasted my money on shoes that really should have just been dropped in the trash.

However a local cobbler saved the day and was somehow able to fill in the missing worn down wood on the front, add a new front sole, and shine up the leather. The boot are still clearly not new with some chipping on the side and a worn heel, but my plan is to get those repaired later on.

Sizing for the No. 6 clogs is tricky! Since I am in NYC I visited the store on Centre Market frequently and kept trying on new pairs until it felt right. I had to size WAY up for the boots. My normal shoes size is a 9, which usually translates to a 40. The girls at No. 6 kept suggesting a 39/40 for me but I could feel my toes rubbing at the front. I finally sized up to a 41and they felt HUGE. Both too wide and too long, but since there are no half sizes I figured that was my only option. Then I waited months for a pair of 41’s to finally go on sale on Ebay so I could make my move!

Next up are shoes for spring and summer. I still love my Swedish Hasbeen sandal wedges, but I am also interested in a pair of the No. 6 peep toe mules in ash or mocha.

Jacket: Eddie Bauer Stadium Coat (blogged here)
Hat: American Apparel
Jeans: Gap 1969 Always Skinny Jeans
Bag: WNYC Ecotote – pledge to get yours! (also blogged here)
Boots: No. 6 5″ Leather Buckle Boot – via Ebay

Boots to survive the Zombie Apocalypse

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We recently started watching the Walking Dead on AMC and I am beyond obsessed. The episodes are so scary that I have trouble sleeping at night, but it is beyond worth it. In addition, imagine my surprise to see one of the main characters wearing a fantastic pair of harness boots day in and day out.

I wrote about my Frye Harness boots last fall, and the trouble I had incorporating into my wardrobe, and I feel Lori’s character gives them a whole new twist with her grunge apocalypse style. I really like how Lori wears a pair of straight leg jeans and then rolls them above the boots.

I think I will give grunge apocalypse a shot this fall…hopefully with no actual zombies!

 

Serious Clog Action: No. 6 Clogs 5″ Leather Buckle Boot

No. 6 Clogs

Any longtime TBB readers know that I’ve been longing for a pair of No. 6 clog boots for going on over three years now, but I was struggling with a serious case of sticker shock. I came close to purchasing a pair last spring, but just couldn’t pull the trigger. But FINALLY they are mine! I discovered a used pair on EBay in my (rare) size, and after a last minute furious bidding war I won the auction, and the boots were on their way from Berkeley, CA to my apt in Brooklyn, NY. Stay tuned for a detailed review, cobbler feedback, and clog sizing info!

Lost & Found: Frye Harness Boots

Boots: Frye, Vest: Gap, Shirt: JCrew, Jeans: J Brand, Sunglassed: Marc by Marc Jacobs

I read a post from Goop a ways back that mentioned “shopping your closet” and I’ve been trying to get in the habit of doing this first before I shop for real and spend more money. When I started thinking about fall boots this year, I “shopped” my closet and found my pair of Frye Harness 12R boots thrown in the back and covered in about an inch of dust. I had planned to bring them to a consignment store last year but never got around to it, and then had forgotten that I even owned them. Around the same time I read A.B. Chao’s post about the “Elegant Cowgirl” in her Fall Uniform post and I started thinking of giving these boots another shot.

I bought these about three years ago from Zappos after cobbling together a couple gift cards and some holiday cash. I always really liked them, and they were exactly what I expected but for some reason I was never really able to find a place for them in my wardrobe. Although I have small feet for my height the boots just seemed HUGE and clompy. I also felt they were too casual for work so that cut out five days of possible wear right there. I got a little bit of use out of them with some long boot cut jeans, but since you couldn’t really see them under the jeans they seemed a little pointless.

This fall, after dusting off the boots I stared wearing them  with my skinny jeans for a casual late fall weekend outfit. My favorite thing about these boots is how rough and tough they are, and the rustic harness details. I’ve found that the more fitted the jeans are the more the outfit works for me. I also like throwing on a preppy top (like this JCrew striped t) to add an interesting contrast. I’m thinking of also trying them with some black leggings and a chambray shirt, or maybe a lacy flowy blouse to really place up the contrast.

Bensimons for the Brooklyn summer

I first read about Besimons in a post on Cup of Jo at the exact time I was on the look out for some new summer slip on shoes to replace my beloved Tom’s which sadly developed a hole by the toe after almost a year of constant wearing. Instantly I placed an order on Shopbop for a gray and tan pair in my size and a half size up since most reviews said they ran small. Although the shoes were cute to my surprise even the half size up was too small and I had to send both back. And as much as I liked the idea of wearing the “French girl’s Converse” all over Brooklyn all sumer, at almost $60 they seemed a little pricey for the quality.

Of course once I sent the shoes back I started seeing Bensimons on the feet of every cute girl around town, and I really needed some new summer slip ons. I did think of purchasing a second pair of Tom’s but really decided I wanted something new.

Then a few weeks ago I got lucky on Ebay! A pair of slightly used slate grey slip on Bensimons popped up and I scored them for a cool $27.  This time I went for a size 10 (41) which is a full size up from my normal 9. The shoes were gently worn, but there was a slightly loose piece of rubbery lining that had ripped open, but I just snipped off with some small scissors. Once quick run through the washer in a mesh bag and my Bensimons were good as new!

Photos above from Instagram. Follow me at “thebagblog”.

Let’s Talk about Clogs

I’ve always had a soft spot for clogs. I think I like the combination of wood, leather, history, practicality, and the fact that they can combine cute and comfortable, all while looking a little old school. In the early 2000’s back in my Boston days I was all about clunky clogs from Troentorp. I had a pair of Picasso clogs  that I wore until they were literally falling apart.

But then after moving to NYC I forgot about clogs and started wearing heels or ballet flats instead. Until a couple years ago when clogs started to show up all over the streets of NYC. These were different clogs though, a little sleeker and thinner with (maybe!) a bit of a sexy vibe. Then clog boots started showing up on the feet of lovelies such as Michelle Williams, and SJP, as well as pretty much any cute girl walking around downtown.

I of course wanted to jump right on this new/old bandwagon, but found myself hesitating at the price point. I purchased all my old clogs in Boston off Ebay, so the idea of spending $300-$500 for one pair of shoes was a little scary. Plus in the back of my head I was worried it was more of a fad. So I waited.

Sweedish Hasbeens Wedge heels with mint jeans from Old Navy

During Summer of 2010 I was able to order a pair of Sweedish Hasbeens Wedge heel sandals with black straps through a 50% off Lucky Breaks sale, and I was smitten from day one. They fit right off the bat, and were comfortable from day one. Two years in these are still a great pair of shoes, though I do need to do some cleaning to get them back to looking their best.

Now here we are a full THREE years later since I started thinking about clogs again and I still want clog boots. Had I purchased them at full price three years ago I would still be wearing them today and enjoying a very low cost per wear. So even though it is June I am finally on the hunt for my fall/winter clogs boots.

The No. 6 store in Nolita at 6 Centre Market Place, NYC

No. 6 lead the pack with custom made clogs out of their Nolita store and I headed there first. I was surprised to not be thrilled by these shoes when I tried on a pair of aviator boots (#2) and some mules. The mules were cute but I could tell I would walk out of them, and the boots weren’t as sleek as I was expecting and I could feel the zippered side rubbing painfully into my feet. I’m still open to this brand since I have heard so many good reviews, but wondering if they are right for my feet.

Next up: the Sweedish Hasbeens Jodhpur boots. Since I already have the wedge heels I know that I like this brand. In the pictures they look a little sleeker & streamlined than the No. 6 boots. On my to do list: find a store in NYC that sells these boots so I can try on in person.

Cozy fall boots: Here I come! Have you purchased any clog boots?

 

 

 

Perfect black flats – Found!

Beautiful new flats….with guest appearance by my kitty’s foot

So I’ve been recently been trying to buy more classic shoes that will last forever. My goal was to have a go to pair of black boots, black heels and black flats that I could wear with any type of pants. Black flats are tricky though since they can easily be boring. I wanted a mix of classic with a twist. I had been looking at these cute Marc Jacobs flats which were on sale at DSW for $99 but of course were out of my size.

But then I found the Frye Emma Honeycomb Stud and I knew my search was over. Classic sturdy black ballet flats + punky studs and peep toe = perfect! I haven’t been able to wear them too much since I’ve been living in my shearing lined winter boots for months, but I can’t wait to pair these with skinny jeans and denim skirts for the spring.

Christian Siriano for Payless

I was going to write whole blog review about the Christian Siriano line for Payless…but then my favorite Fashion Herald went and did all the work for me..MWAAHAHAHA…so I’m going to be lazy and just link.

My takeaway for this line is that it is super fun & fierce and SUPER impractical, which I assume is exactly what Christian set out to do.   I already have a closet full of insane high heels that are beautiful but I never wear since I can’t walk more than one block in them, so why add to the pile?

Lots of shoes at the 34th Street & Broadway store. The will be showing up on Sept 8th for all the non-Manhattan folk.

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Beautiful peep toe pumps with ankle straps

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Ankle strap in full force

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Beautiful attention to detail, especially for a Payless shoes. But where would I wear it?

I also checked out some of the other designer shoes and I am one again linking to Fashion Herald’s review. My verdict? I am waiting for the Dauphin to show up. Now there is an impractical shoe I would take a chance on!