The perils of vintage – Part 1: Shoes

Like my boots? Yeah, well don’t get too fond. These fuckers have walked their last. To be honest, I should have thrown them away a long time ago, the heels are absolutely wrecked and I look like a bow-legged marionette shuffling about in them. But they just looked so cool with all my floaty gipsy/opium fiend outfits and it’s not like I was going to go trekking in them or anything.

Well, no. But I did wear them to go stomping around Chelsea Harbour looking for furniture showrooms and as a result I am now sitting on my bed with an ice pack on my ankle. The bastard things have crippled me. I had to do an emergency ballet pump run this morning (‘run’ being a very loose term in this context) because I couldn’t physically make it to the office in them. That’s the last time I buy vintage shoes.

Except… I say that every time. It occurred to me today as I hobbled to the shops that a frightening amount of my flat shoes have been the result of emergency purchases after a pair of vintage shoes has failed me.

Now, DbyDC loves a bit of vintage but this is not couture we’re talking about. This is been in an attic for twenty years, found ’em down the back of eBay, BARGAIN hunt. They are not antiques; I am not ‘investing in a piece of fashion history’. I like vintage because it’s not fashion-by-numbers, it involves a bit of imagination. And it’s cheap.

Not only is it cheap, it is also second-hand. This means someone else has worn it. Possibly several someone elses. And possibly not just worn but worn in. Consequently it sometimes (often) falls apart. Which is fine if it’s a dress or a jacket which you can just stitch up again but shoes…

Last time I took these boots to the cobbler he looked at me in disbelief and said “Really? You want to pay me to re-sole these? Why don’t you just get some new ones?” Essentially what he was telling me was that I’d written them off. The price of the new soles was going to out value the boots themselves. I’d be better off stripping them for parts.

But I persevered and now here I am. Have I learnt my lesson? Have I fuck. I’ll be scanning eBay within minutes. But in the meantime I am really going to have to try to stick to ballet pumps for a few days. Balls. Luckily for me Zara came up trumps and I am now the proud possessor of the most Christmassy pair of shoes I’ve owned since I was about five.


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