In Austin right now, the weather is trying *so* hard to be Fall. The temperature will tease everyone for a day or so, and then BAM: right back to 90+ degrees. Despite the erratic weather patterns, I keep seeing people all over town dressing “as if”: wearing boots, skirts in heavy materials, and even sweaters (aren’t you people roasting?). This fall season, a spanking new pair of booties is at the top of my shopping list, and finding an acceptable pair has become more of a tall order than I had anticipated. Granted, if I were going to spend upwards of 400 dollars on a pair I’d probably have no problems whatsoever, but my credit card is coughing and wheezing these days due to recent overuse (this is the culprit), so a more budget-friendly pair is in the cards for me this go-round.
I found my way into DSW on my lunch break recently (I swear; I blacked out and all of a sudden, I was there) and lamented the sad state of affairs in there. Why, pray tell, do nearly all of the available options in a bootie/shootie/whatever variant thereof need to be covered in studs, toe caps, buckles, and other accoutrement that serve no other purpose other than to ruin an otherwise good footwear idea? I had this very problem at DSW not too long ago and it’s back in force, just in a different season.
My god, the studs. Note to Steve Madden: Stop. It.
These would have been perfectly fine without the excessive buckles and weird cutouts.
The handbag section has the same problem: too many studs, chains, and unnecessary add-ons that ruin an otherwise decent design.
I have many issues with excess hardware and details on shoes, the first (and most obvious of which) being that it makes them look stupid and cheap. I like a few tasteful studs on a garment, but the stud trend has gotten completely out of control, to the point which I cannot seem to find a plain pair of shoes, handbag, or even a shirt without weird, chintzy-looking details on it. ‘Stupid and cheap’ issues aside, once the buckle or stud inevitably breaks or falls off, you now have a broke-ass shoe and you’re right back to ‘stupid and cheap’. Functionless buckles and closures serve no other purpose than to trap the wearer into buying yet another pair of cheap shoes (I call this the ‘Forever 21 effect’).
Finally, footwear adorned with all sorts of faux-metal whatnot is not classic, and, harkening back to the ‘stupid/cheap’ conundrum, was undoubtedly not designed to last beyond one season. So where does that leave me? Well, at present, frustrated that I can’t seem to locate a mid-price range pair of booties with a flat (or close to it) heel, in a color and style that I won’t tire of (and that I can wear with a range of outfits), and doesn’t have a bunch of cheap crap glued to it.
Wish me luck, dear readers. It’s a retail jungle out there.