30 May 2007

Style Dilemma: Travel Shoes and Bag

BlueSuitGirl pleads for help:

I need HELP in a big way!!!!!! I need comfortable shoes-- for strutting the streets of Cairo, that aren't too ugly and I would love it if they could be a just a tad bit stylish. I've found some really comfortable, cute flip flops, but I want something a little nicer than that. I know I am asking for a lot....and I have searched everywhere. Oh yeah, I'm leaving in a week too, so I can't depend on ordering online. Any suggestions??? How did your Grasshoppers work out for your Greece trip?

And while we are on the subject, I also need a cute bag. I don't want a purse per say...but I was thinking something along the lines ov "courrier" style, but not huge and not "sporty"....I would love for it to be a multi-purpose bag while I'm over there.

Any way you can help me out of this bind????????

Love ya......


I promise a more detailed response later, but since the subject line of your email read "HEEEEEEEEEEEELP!," I wanted to get your plea up and see what the Infintessimal Readership could offer.

I.R.? What can we do to help BlueSuitGirl travel the pyramids in comfortable style?

As promised, here's the update...sorry for the delay...know you're under the gun!

On the shoes, a couple of significant travel points from my recent Greece trip and other travel:

If it's not heavenly comfortable in the store, do. not. buy. it. (The pair of shoes, that is.) This is not the time (when you're going to be traipsing around sandy pyramids and the streets of foreign cities) to be risking with an "I'm sure they'll stretch" thought.

Leather. While my Grasshoppers were a brilliant idea, canvas doesn't stretch. Leather will breathe and give almost from the beginning, two key things when you're roaming. And on a similar note, the less synthetic material, the better - for the same breathing purpose.

Mules, flip-flops, and slides are a no-no for comfortable travel. They're fine if you're hitting a beachside bar (which I'm sure you will), but not for walking. Your feet and calves will not be happy with the fact that you've had to grip the shoe all day long to make sure it stays on.

Kenneth Cole - When we first went to Romania 5 years ago, I needed something that was comfy and dressy - not an easy order. Fortunately, K.C.'s Reaction line, and many of his other styles, are built for just that, with softest leather, flexible rubber soles and cushioning. If you're comfortable walking in heels, go for the Elasta Girl (love that superhero name), top right. If heels aren't good for you all day, go metallic flat with the Run Away, at right. Run Away's rubber sole is a plus for travel, too.

Gigi Favela - If you're really looking for something pretty and dressy you can put on at night, but still be comfortable if you have to dash for a cab, and are willing to fork over a little more dough, try the Nina (at right) in navy faux ostrich. It has a little breathing space, and all of G.F.'s shoes are designed with extra cushioning in the ball of the shoe. Never mind that navy is a brilliant "neutral" choice in my book.

Isaac Mizrahi for Target - At the complete opposite end of the spectrum, price wise, you have another option. First, the Amanda (bottom right) sports a wedge, which is a solid choice for walking. True, this one is a sandal, but if the straps are soft enough, and you're looking for an evening option, this might just be the way to go. And if you mess them up en route, or your luggage gets lost, you're not out a bazillion dollars.

In my experience, there are a couple of lines to avoid: Steve Madden and Nine West. True, they tend to have the good styles for less money, but I keep finding their leathers too stiff for comfort.

And...if all else fails, use that bag you're going to be wearing to take along a favorite pair of comfy shoes to switch later in the day - it's a great way to combat the hot, sweaty feet issue.

Answers to your bag question coming soon...let us know what you come up with and how they work out.


Anonymous said...

love the KC runaway.....I'm off to DSW now in hopes of finding that or a very similar shoe....wish me luck!!! I'll report back tomorrow!!!

Anonymous said...

I don't have a shoe suggestion but I recommend inserts. I've got ones that just have heel and arch support so my toes aren't pinched. I don't think I'd be able to wear ballet and other flats without them.

Anonymous said...

no luck last night.....lots of gorgeous shoes, just none that were comfortable and gorgeous. But, I just got on the Dillard's website, we have those stores down here, if the store has half the shoes they show on their website....I should be in luck.

I like the idea of inserts too....

Lauren said...

another brand to avoid. . . BCBG. love them but def NOT a comfortable shoe. I have some really cute flats by kensie that are super comfy too. good luck!