Tag Archives: Chie Mihara

Cobbler, Cobbler, Mend My Shoe

Time to go shoe shopping in my own closet.

So many fine pairs of shoes in there.  Many made in Italy, Spain, or Portugal.  Built to last.  Worn down by heavy use but with plenty of miles to go.  I spent a lot on them.  On purpose, you see, because I decided quality matters where footwear is concerned.  Quality is the near perfect balance of beauty plus function.  I would now like to add mileage to the equation.

I’d love to snatch up a pair of new shoes right about now.  Just one new pair for the 2018 fall season, that’s all.  What would be so bad about that?  It’s not guilt that holds me back.  It’s not money.  I give myself a generous shoe budget. No, it’s something else.  Something more global.  An overarching issue in my life right now.

In a word…clutter.

Clutter really gets to me.  General house clutter mostly.  Too many papers, books, music and stray socks.  Too many kitchen utensils, expired food pantry items, office supplies, file folders of stuff from the kids’ elementary school years, things bought at estate sales that never got cleaned up and re-purposed, Christmas gifts I never liked, clothing items bought online that don’t fit but never got returned.  Do I need to go on?

So let’s face it, I have too many shoes.  Time to purge, donate the orphans, and spiff up the ones that need attention.  I don’t like to waste time beating myself up about the hardly worn.  As Mari Kondo says, they “sparked joy” when I bought them.

I spent a few hours tidying up my closet this afternoon.  I pulled out all the shoes and boxes then dusted, and swept.  I moved the spring/summer shoes back into boxes and stacked them neatly on the top shelf.

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Next, I organized the fall/winter shoes I frequently wear into the hanging shoe caddy and the rest into easily accessed boxes on the floor.

 

I have seven pairs I will offer to my daughter and what she doesn’t want I will donate.

Lastly, I’ve identified the ones that are badly in need of repair.

IMG_4066These are going to the cobbler.

The thought of it gives me a little thrill.  I hand over the shoes and then, for a fraction of the original cost, I will pay for the repairs and receive what will feel like four brand new pairs.  More mileage=more love.

Here are the before pictures…

IMG_4067This pair of Ink booties were a staple of my wardrobe between 2013-2015.  While at an ACDA National Conference in Minneapolis two years ago, the cap to the heel broke off.  Likely while marching back and forth daily between the conference center and hotel snaking through the infamous Downtown Skywalk.  I didn’t notice until I took a field trip to visit my old friend Christopher Hopkins (The Makeover Guy) and he detected the lopsided clopping sound which accompanied my stroll through the aisles of a liquor store as we searched for a decent pinot noir.

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Here’s a pair of Chie Miharas where the heel cap also detached.  I love the textured leather, but it’s worn away on the toes.  Can it be restored?

IMG_4074Another pair of booties but this time it’s the tip of the sole that has come away.  This was my first pair of Coclicos.

 

IMG_4078These Chie Mihara flats have a metallic finish.  I got them a few years ahead of the trend.  I’ve badly scuffed up the toe of the left shoe with the edge of the heel on the right shoe.  Hopefully my cobbler can work with the metallic finish and maybe file down the edge of the heel a bit?

I’m off to the Village Cobbler!

 

 

Shiny Shoes

This summer I’m seeing lots and lots of metallic sandals.

I decided to get me a pair.IMG_7621IMG_7623Yep, they are from Chie Mihara.  I strayed a bit from my proclivity for her mary janes, kitten heels and oxfords. A daring move for me.  So far, so good. I ordered them from Farfetch at $100.00 off the list price.  Shipping was reasonable and delivery was fast.

If it’s good enough for Michelle Obama…Michelle-Obama-London-LMilan-Christopher-Kane-Duro-Olowu-Fashion-Tom-Lorenzo-Site-TLO-1It’s good enough for me. Can you see her yellow pedicure in this photo?  I just love her so much for things like that.  Does that make me shallow?

Here are some more styles found on the internet:

chie metallic 3

More Chie Miharas here…

chie metallic 2

…here…

...and here

…and here

Moma sandal

Moma

Naot sandal

Naot. Birkenstock’s sleeker, hipper cousin.

Dansko sandal

Dansko

Always love me some sandals from Cydwoq

Love the sandals from Cydwoq

Cydwoq sandal

Cydwoq

Aerosole

Aerosole

Argila sandal.  Also from Spain.

Argila. Another fabulous designer in Spain.

Found these online at Athleta.

Found these online at Athleta.

FitFlop Petra

FitFlop Petra

The following are from the online shop Totokaelo:

Marni sandal

Marni

Maison Martin Margiela

Maison Martin Margiela

Rick Owens

Rick Owens

Lastly, I discovered these colorful metallics in my search.  Anybody out there know this brand?  I’m tempted to give the aqua or green ones a try.

Dromedaris Ana

Dromedaris Ana

Architecture

In April my son and I took a trip to New York City.  We stayed at a hotel in Chelsea and made downtown, particularly the West Side, our main focus of attention.  One of the highlights, for me, was walking the length of one of Manhattan’s latest attractions; The High Line. The above ground linear park is a repurposed elevated section of a disused portion of a New York Central Railroad Spur called the West Side Line.  The 1.45-mile-long aerial greenway runs from around 14th Street in the Meatpacking District, through Chelsea, to the northern edge of the West Side Train Yard on 34th Street with second story views of both old and emerging architecture, newly created art installations, construction sites, train yards, and the Hudson River.  It was a glorious early spring morning with glimpses of budding green growth and intense purple patches of crocuses between preserved railroad ties.  Mingled in the air was a composition of distant metallic clanging, occasional jackhammering and the softer, gentler car noises typical of a downtown side street. After this long slog of a winter, I felt like I had walked through the gates of heaven. I wanted this to be the first of many future treks along the High Line.  There is so much to see and hear.  It must change from season to season, month to month, week to week. This time, this first time, it was the architecture that took me by surprise.  When did walls become obtuse, rounded, and protruding? IMG_7190 IMG_7184IMG_7188IMG_7193 I kinda love it. Our hotel occupied what use to be sleeping quarters for merchant marines docking at Chelsea Pier.  Isn’t it fabulous too? It’s called the Downtown Dream Hotel.  I highly recommend it. IMG_7206So naturally, all this interaction with architecture got me to thinking about… well… SHOES! Shoes certainly have architectural appeal.architec shoes

Christian Loubiton

Christian Loubiton

Maison Martin Margiela

Maison Martin Margiela

Camper 2015

Camper 2015

Chie Mihara spring/summer 2015 Collection

Chie Mihara spring/summer 2015 Collection

Roberto-del-Carlo 2015

Roberto-del-Carlo 2015

Versace

Versace

Chie Mihara spring/summer 2014 collectionA little shoe architecture for your Memorial Day weekend.  Enjoy!

Wear the Red Shoes

When you think of red shoes, what image comes to mind?

ruby slippers 5I’m guessing it’s these, Dorothy’s iconic ruby slippers from “The Wizard of Oz”  Who could forget Judy Garland in that blue checked gingham dress with matching blue anklets and these shoes?  It’s the original “pop of color” which style bloggers love so much.  Do you remember what shoes she had on before the crash landing into Munchkin Land?  I can’t.

These scarlet colored sequined pumps would prove to be both a blessing and a curse for our Midwestern heroine.  She needed them to get back to Kansas but they caused her and her friends a heap of trouble along the way.  This got me to thinking about other movie heroines who wore red shoes and how they fared.

The Red Shoes movieI’m afraid this gal didn’t do so well.  I’ve never seen the 1948 movie “The Red Shoes” but, from what I understand, these brightly colored toe shoes had a mind of their own.  The movie format is that of a  ballet story within a story.  It’s the sad tale of a ballerina named Vicky Page.  She comes to the attention of a noteworthy choreographer who features her in his new ballet based on Hans Christian Anderson’s “The Red Shoes.”  In Andersons’s tale a demonic shoemaker (is there such a thing?) sells a pair of red ballet slippers to a young girl.  At first the girl enjoys the magic of the slippers and the powers of dance they transfer.  However, things soon spin out of control as the girl is forced to dance uncontrollably and incessantly.  By the end of the story she is near death from exhaustion. She finds herself in front of a church and begs a priest for help.  She asks him to remove her shoes and when he does, she dies.  The Shoemaker somehow retrieves the shoes to give to his next victim.

I’m afraid Vicky’s story ends badly too.  Caught between two waring lovers she ends up fleeing the theatre before a performance of the ballet and jumps from a balcony in front of a moving train suffering a much more violent death than her fairy tale counterpart.  Holy crap.

Chacolat-red-shoesBut, perhaps my favorite pair of movie red shoes were the ones worn by Juliette BInoche’s character Vianne Rocher in “Chocolat.”  Vianne and her six-year-old daughter cause a big stir when they move to a small, conservative, rural town in 1960’s France to open a chocolate shop.  She’s a single mom with an illegitimate child and keeping Sunday hours at her shop.  Even worse, Vianne begins to sell her tempting treats during the season of Lent.  Vianne is beautiful and she wears tasteful but provocative clothing including one fabulous pair of red pumps.  Eventually her warmth, exuberance and helpful nature win over the people of the town.  Plus, about halfway into the movie, Johnny Depp comes drifting by on a river boat.  These two misfits have some amazing chemistry.  So, although the shoes contribute to some strife in the beginning, at least Vianne doesn’t die in the end and she gets to keep her shop, her man and her shoes.  Phew!

Here’s a pair of my favorite red heels which have never caused me problems (that I know about).  They are from John Fluevog and the style is called Ileanna from the Operetta family.

IMG_6773  I think this style is discontinued but below are a trio of red Fluevog heels that are currently available online…

John Fluevog Sopranos Carey in tomato red

John Fluevog Sopranos Carey in tomato red

John Fluevog Operettas Malibran

John Fluevog Operettas Malibran

John Fluevog Desmond

John Fluevog Desmond

I love the Operetta family of shoes in the Fluevog line.  The two inch heel is very stable.  This style also works well for those of us with wider feet.  As does the Desmond family although that pointy toe may scare you away.  I assure you these shoes are very wearable and make your legs look fabulous.  You might be tempted to go up a half size but it’s not necessary.  They come in a whole range of colors.  All can be found at JohnFluevog.com.

Here are some other brands…

Fidji brand shoes from Portugal found on 6pm.com

Fidji brand shoes from Portugal found on 6pm.com

Miz Mooz also found on 6pm.com

Miz Mooz also found on 6pm.com

Liebling Shoes from Israel found on easy.com

Liebling Shoes from Israel found on etsy.com

Chie Mihara shoes from Spain, Spring/Summer 2015

Chie Mihara shoes from Spain, Spring/Summer 2015

Chie Mihara Spring/Summer 2015 found online at Pedshoes.com

Chie Mihara Spring/Summer 2015 found online at Pedshoes.com

Cute red pumps made in Argentina found on Etsy

Cute red pumps made in Argentina found on Etsy

All Black often features a version of this style in various colors.  I found these on trashydiva.com

All Black often features a version of this style in various colors. I found these on trashydiva.com

Kudeta Shoes made in Italy.  These were on ebay.com

Kudeta Shoes made in Italy. These were on ebay.com

Red oxfords and loafers…

French designer Repetto found on gravitypope.com

French designer Repetto found on gravitypope.com

Last year's Moma heeled Oxford online at amano.com

Last year’s Moma heeled Oxford online at amano.com

Frye Courtney slip on at thefryecompany.com

Frye Courtney slip on at thefryecompany.com

Cute shoes I found on pinterest.  Wish I knew the brand name.

Cute shoes I found on pinterest. Wish I knew the brand name.

Winter’s not over yet.  Look at these red boots.

Pantanetti red ankle boots found on headstart.com

Pantanetti red ankle boots found on headstart.com

Blondin red boots on Anthropologie.com

Blondin red boots on Anthropologie.com

Fiorintini and Baker Nelly boots at pedshoes.com

Fiorintini and Baker Nelly boots at pedshoes.com

John Fluevog Mezzo Cecilia boots.

John Fluevog Mezzo Cecilia boots.

Frye Melissa Button zip short boots on Amazon.com

Frye Melissa Button zip short boots on Amazon.com

Anaid Kupuri

Anaid Kupuri

Do you have what it takes to wear a pair of red cowboy boots?red boots on etsy My friend and a Sole Searching reader named Jenny rocked a pair of red cowboy boots on Christmas Eve.  What a perfect time to break them out.  She wore them with great style.

Jenny's red cowboy boots on Christmas Eve 2014

Jenny’s red cowboy boots on Christmas Eve 2014

Happy Valentine’s Day to all.  A gal should be able to wear her red shoes without being chased by a wicked witch or meeting her ultimate demise.  Let’s make it our mission to put the red shoe curse to rest once and for all!

It Might As Well Be Spring

I’m tingling all over with excitement and I can’t keep from smiling. My cheeks are flushed and my heart rate has noticeably quickened.  A wave of sublime satisfaction has gently washed over me and if I smoked, now would be the perfect time to light up.

No, I didn’t just have sex.  Rather…  

The new Spring/Summer 2015 line of Chie Mihara Shoes have officially arrived!!

I’ve spent the past hour or so poring over the latest offerings on the official Chie Mihara website, loading them up to feature today on Sole Searching.  Of course there are too many to share, but I’ve chosen a few pairs to highlight and perhaps to educate those of you who have not yet discovered this amazing women’s shoe designer based in Spain.chie curi-Bchie junichichie simonechie expo starI’m partial to the colorful designs. So unexpected. The examples above are classic shoe types; peep toe t-strap, Roman sandal, mary jane, pump. It’s the color, texture and materials that make them unique.  Don’t you love that shade of mustard yellow?  And the blue polka dots and green gingham are at once nostalgic and new.  Do you love the water color effect on the pumps?  The orange trim is perfect. They might not fit into everybody’s wardrobe but they demand to be admired.  I tell my husband it’s like visiting an art museum.

The other thing I love about her line is the variety of heel heights.  For every towering wedge there is an equal offering of mid and low alternatives.  For instance, here is a range offered in the Hawaiian print style..chie vetcuchie hawaiin platform chie hawiian chunk chie hawiian print ox

Each season I can’t wait to see her oxfords… chie dijon oxford chie durui chie konoko gravity popeThere is a definite retro vibe in most of her designs… chie shoyu chie red polka dotchie womanchie laio-a

But, she’s also on trend.  For example, the platform sandal.  I’m drawn to this pair but there are several others.chie okoro

And I love these sandals because they manage to make a two inch heel look as sexy as a five inch stilleto.chie silver sandal

Lastly, you have to love her sense of humor.  I can’t see myself wearing these, but somebody out there is drooling over these Cruella de Vil lovelies.  Maybe they were meant for you?chies crazy

In Praise of the Spontaneous Outing

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Chie Mihara Nasy in navy blue and turquoise from fall/winter collection 2014.

nasy

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Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to all.  I am taking time out from my sick bed to write a post and to share with you my latest shoe acquisition from Christmas morning (see above).  We Had a fabulous Christmas family reunion in New Jersey with all 20 members of the Sherlock family; one matriarch, five siblings, five significant others and nine cousins.  We drove down on Christmas Day and sailed right across the Tappan Zee bridge with absolutely no traffic.

One day we strolled along the Asbury Park Boardwalk in weather approaching 60 degrees ferenhiet.  Stopping for some nachos and beer at Pop’s Garage we met Kelly.

IMG_6402Kelly, we soon found out, was the accountant and had been pulled into service because the place was understaffed and hadn’t anticipated the rush.  She tried to warn us, but we couldn’t be deterred by the threat of slow service and delayed tortilla chips.  We sat outside at a picnic table until the sun started moving behind the building and we remembered it was winter.  Although guacamole, salsa, chips and beer were flowing, more of our gang was showing up and we needed a bigger table and a bit more shelter.  Kelly found us an empty table at the sister sushi restaurant next door.  It was perfect and so we became more serious about eating.  IMG_6408IMG_6410Fish tacos, beef enchiladas, chicken nachos, quesadillas and a pitcher of Shirley Temples soon graced the long table.  Kelly encouraged us to grab up utensils and napkins from a nearby abanodoned bussing station.  “Help yourself to whatever you can find for Pete’s sake.”

I don’t know how long we were there or what meal it was.  Lunch? Dinner? Linner?  At a certain point it was revealed that the regular wait staff had offered to take over our table for Kelly.  She would have nothing of it.  She sat down for awhile and regaled us with her employment history in and around Asbury Park.  She had done the books for just about every bar in town but earlier had done a bit of waitressing.  She was enjoying this blast from her past.

When it was time to go, most of us walked home heading north along the boardwalk.  IMG_6415IMG_6413

Although the week was filled with other great family events; the annual Christmas bowling outing, cousin gift exchange, carols around the piano, fabulous home cooked meals, an excursion into NYC to see a broadway musical…the spontaneous afternoon on the Asbury Park Boardwalk will remain a favorite memory.

Searching for: Chelsea boots

Been doing some sole searching lately.  I’ve been trying to find a pair of black and/or brown Chelsea boots.  Here are some styles with a lower heel:

Megumi Ochi found on Gravitypope website

Megumi Ochi found on Gravitypope website

Frye Jillian Chelsea Boot

Frye Jillian Chelsea Boot

Repetto Auguste Chelsea boot found on Repetto website

Repetto Auguste found on Repetto website

Chie Mihara Vander Pruna found on Chie Mihara website

Chie Mihara Vander Pruna found on Chie Mihara website

Coclico Sandrine found on Re-souL website

Coclico Sandrine found on Re-souL website

Kudeta 423301 Low Heel Chelsea Boot found on Re-souL website

Kudeta 423301 Low Heel Chelsea Boot found on Re-souL website

Here are a few with a bit more heel:

Zinda Chelsea boot found on Gravitypope website

Zinda Chelsea boot found on Gravitypope website

Ink boot found on Head Start website.

Ink boot found on Head Start website

Passage Cairo by John Fluevog

Passage Cairo by John Fluevog

Want more color?

Chelsea Boots by Poetry

Chelsea Boots by Poetry

Chelsea boot by John Fluevog.

Radio RCI unisex Chelsea boot by John Fluevog

Emerald Crocodile boots by Dieppa Restrepo found on Totokaelo website

Emerald Crocodile boots by Dieppa Restrepo found on Totokaelo website

Jeffrey Campbell Forecast Boot.

Jeffrey Campbell Forecast Boot

So that’s it.  Just a post full of pretty shoes.  What do you think?  Any thoughts about this trend?  Do you own a pair?

CLBKH

One of my closest and dearest friends was inspired to send me some photos of her favorite GNO (girls night out) black kitten heels.  She admits to having paid more for these than is her custom but also says they get a lot of wear.  I’m very impressed.  Quite chic and flattering on her.  I’ve never heard of the brand; BeautiFeel.  They’re made in Israel.  She agreed to let me share them here on SS.IMG_6069IMG_6070IMG_6071IMG_6072IMG_6073

So, let’s hear it for the cute little black kitten heel.  Move over LBD, here comes the CLBKH! Here are some I’ve collected on my Pinterest board.black cutout pumpsRepettoRoseMaryJane_832911etsy pumpscoclico on amanocydwoqchie black bow pumpFrom left to right, top to bottom they are: Image found on Pinterest from the website Refinery29 (brand?); Repetto (Rose Mary Jane); Keymandesign on Etsy (Clementine); Coclico (Sarah); Cydwoq (Calamity) and Chie Mihara (Retama).

Thinking of starting a CLBKH Friday…. or maybe Tuesday.  Still thinking about the day, but send me your photos.

Ordinary Oxfords

IMG_6053IMG_6055Back in August I had some luck at another shoe store in Florence where I found these seemingly ordinary laceless oxfords.  Cynthia Kowal runs a shop called Diva Shoes at Via Guicciardini 10/r  just off the Ponte Vecchio.  I was immediately drawn to her collection.  Oxfords were plentiful inside her doors so the only questions were; which style? and what color?  She gave me a great tip.  “Choose the darker ones.  They’ll go with everything.”  I’m beginning to think that truer words were never spoken.

I’ve been avoiding the wearing and purchasing of shoes in the colors of black and dark brown for several years.  I’ve retired my black Dansko clogs and traded them in for colorful leather shoes from makers such as Chie Mihara, John Fluevog, Art, Fidji, Liebling, Fly London and Esska.  Since I spend hours of my work life under the tent of a burgundy colored choir robe, dressing my feet with some unexpected pizzazz has been an innocent rebellion.  Ever notice that the shoe bins at most consignment and thrift shops are littered with the black and brown cast-offs from your friends and neighbors?  Walk into any Payless Shoe Store and find row upon row of generic black and brown knockoffs with very little in the way of color variation.  Where’s the imagination?  Let us take the road less traveled.  For example, here’s a pair of Chie Mihara oxfords from the  2013 spring/summer collection.  I convinced myself they must be mine.IMG_6057 IMG_6058Where do I start with the lovefest?  First of all, they are oxfords.  Secondly, they have a perfectly reasonable yet uplifting heel.  Then there’s the trifecta of materials which make up the vamp; the patent leather toe, the woven (yes, woven) blue and white leathers in the middle and then the perfectly saturated shade of complimentary blue leather which wraps around the patent leather tongue all done up with a slender black lace.  I saw these in a few different color ways that season but this version could only be purchased online at the British based women’s clothing company called Toast.  I spent a lot of hard earned choir conducting cash on these which included that shipping bill from London.

So why have you rarely seen me in these?  Sadly, it’s because they hardly go well with anything.  You might have seen this coming but I was honestly shocked.

Maybe if I was a little younger or the owner of a hipster art gallery in Portand, Oregon?  Maybe if I lived in Finland and was editor in chief of a bikram yoga magazine or a waitress in a Morrocan/Thai fusion restaurant in the West Village?  Maybe then I could wear these shoes with just about anything and get away with it.  As it is, It’s hard work avoiding the clown vibe.  Even worse, a middle aged female clown vibe.  One has to be very careful.

The trick is to make the non-shoe part of the outfit very quiet.  Business on the top and middle with the party on the very bottom.  But it can’t be business with a capital “B” as the shoe recommends a somewhat eclectic approach. It also helps if the pants are on the long side.  Let the shoes peek out.  Avoid cropped or ankle length pants (see note about avoiding clown look).  Don’t even try these with skirts and dresses (see note about not being 20 years old).  There’s not a whole lot of options left but I’ve managed to wear them now and again.

But those dark elephant grey oxfords from Diva Shoes?  They’re gonna get around town.  I’m starting to lean in to the black and brown options again.  Perhaps I cast them aside in haste.  A girl needs her go-to shoes as much as she needs a little kick of color.

Thanks for the advice Cynthia.  And…thanks for the shoes.