Addiction comes in many forms, and mine happens to be shoes. At one point in my life, I remember losing count after 200 pairs of shoes. I don’t have that many pairs anymore, but I definitely still have a lot. I try not to count them anymore ― it gets depressing. I started out buying just about anything and everything I liked that was cheap. It didn’t help that I go to China every year and THE thing to do there is shopping. Shoes were so cheap in China; I can get something cute for $4, or spend about $10 for a really nice pair. These annual pilgrimage to my motherland not only landed me in excess of 200 pairs, it was becoming an organizational problem: I didn’t have anywhere to put them. It also didn’t help that I wasn’t the only shoe nut in our family. My sister started to catch shoe fever around the same time, and was hauling them in by the dozens every time she went back to China. Between the two of us, these piles of shoes were becoming an accumulating mess that was hard to look at. So, we had to be creative. We knew we couldn’t find shoe racks big enough that would fit the amount of shoes that we have, so we went to Home Depot, bought some pre-cut wood panels, and made ourselves a giant shoe rack.
This rack’s shoes are 90% mine. We have another rack half this size that I did not photograph that is mostly my sister’s. I picked a few pair out of the rack to talk a little about them… Nothing that I wear regularly because they’re too beat-up to be photographed 😛
In the past few years, I have finally started to taper off these shoe buying frenzies. It could be two things: I have finally learned the lesson that quality is always better than quantity, or maybe I am still buying the same amount of shoes, but just paying more for each pair, so I think I am buying less but I am really not. I am not sure, but I hope it’s not the latter.
The pair that started it all ― my favorite and oldest (5yr old) pair of Cole Haans. They were my first pair of “nice” shoes. For $300, they have stood the test of time and style. I always loved them because they’re the only brand that have Nike Air technology incorporated into the soles!
I give away anywhere between 10-20 pairs of shoes annually. The shoes I give away are ones that I haven’t worn in a long time, or never worn after purchasing them for a year or two, in which case by giving them away, someone else might appreciate them more than me ― or so I hope.
Two pairs of Kelsi Dagger, the style is call Linzy. I love them so much I got two pairs and I call them my twins. I actually had to ask a friend to buy the gray patent leather pair for me from a different city and bring it to me when he was back in town because they didn’t have it in stock in Sacramento (and they didn’t ship). Online they retail for about $100, but I got the gray pair for about $80 at a discount shoe store, and the blush color pair for $44 online!
Some funky stuff I never wear. From left: got them in China for $6; BeBe suede and snakeskin platform that I wore ONCE in the past year that I got them; Baker’s crazy pump on sale for $30 that I probably wore twice since I got them 2 years ago. I guess I do have kind of an eclectic taste when it comes to shoes. I bought those Chinese shoes 4 years ago. I have yet to wear them once. I don’t want to give them away because I am still hoping that I will wear them someday…
If I ever get married, count on these ivory jeweled satin pump to be there. The blue satin Betsy Johnson pair on the right was from a sale 4 years ago at a sale at Saks, best deal ever, it was 75% off.
More stuff I never wear… I probably wore each pair once in the past 3 years. Maybe it’s time to give them to someone else who might actually wear them? Nah, I like looking at these too much to give them away.