From the Hip: The Hip Mom Sneaks Out for Some Shoes
So perhaps you’ve followed my oh-so-sage tips for a couple of months now, and have a frisky little dress, hot hair, and a not-too-tired complexion. Maybe you even purchased yourself a perky new bosom. Now you just need some SHOES.
What? You’re wearing sneakers? I don’t care if you just worked out. Or are pretending you just worked out. Get those things off now. Even if you are just wearing jeans and a t-shirt, cute shoes will rescue your whole outfit and keep you from feeling schlumpy.
My own affair with footwear began when I was 22, after I had graduated from college. I don’t know if college is the same today, but at the University of Washington in 1990’s Seattle – capital of grunge and home of Kurt Cobain – all you had to do when you got dressed was look homeless. Or like you just came off a weeklong camping expedition on Mt. Rainier and hadn’t showered yet. If you dressed up at all people assumed you had a job interview. And, while some girls can look totally cute in a lumberjack shirt, sweats, and a knit wool cap, I could not — and still can’t. So I went through college looking much like a hung-over hobbit.
Imagine, then, my surprise and glee when I moved to New York City, got a job at a fancy accounting firm, and started buying dresses! Skirts! And most critically: HEELS! It was like my fairy godmother waved her magic wand: no longer my native dwarf height, I was now someone who resembled an adult female. Suddenly a boring black suit (which I wore a lot of given the nature of my industry) was instantly transformed with a whimsical, colorful stiletto. So I have been in lust with shoes ever since.
Alas, nothing in this galaxy compares to Nordstrom’s shoe department. But J. Cole shoes at King’s Landing at 96th and Riverside is a solid runner-up. They carry fun, eclectic shoes that not everyone else stocks – like one of my favorites, Beverly Feldman. And their sales – my gawsh, if you happen to hit one of their spectacular sales you will be transported to shoe nirvana. I got these BCBG heels (pictured) for a mere $36, down from $120! And, I will wear them this weekend – even if it’s just to Red Robin with the fam. Their selection of colorful summer shoes dazzle your eyes with their tropical colors – if you are wearing their fruit-hued sandals, you will feel like you are boarding a cruise ship in Jamaica instead of waiting in line at Wal-Mart.
In Utica Square, The Glass Slipper has a nice selection of fun and funky jewelry, trendy tops, high-end jeans, purses, and, yes, lots of shoes. They stock a bunch of Franco Sarto shoes, which I love, and these adorable Seychelles strappy espadrilles (pictured). Don’t they just scream slip me on and go have some champagne al fresco RIGHT NOW?
Right next door to The Glass Slipper is Flirt, which is chock-full of sassy mom wear. Here, they sell Moxie shoes, a local shoe business, which also sells online. The Moxie shoe lady will even come to your house to host a “shoe party.” Now that is my kind of multitasking: shoe shopping and gossiping at the same time. Her selection is varied, from boots to flats to sandals to stilettos. I love these J. Renee sandals (pictured). You could wear them with shorts or a sundress all summer long.
Budget warning: Flirt is right next to the Lolly Garden, which is a cute-kiddie-clothing store mecca. If you happen to love your children when you are walking by, STAY FAR AWAY. Otherwise you will go in to bankruptcy buying criminally adorable rompers for your baby girl or tow truck shirts for your baby boy.
Now that I’ve yelled at you about wearing sneakers, though, I will grant you one exception that I stole from my good French friend Ines de la Fressange (well, OK, I just read her book – Parisian Chic) Ines swears by – you’ll never guess – Converse sneakers. I must agree. For some reason Converse do not make you look like you are going to a spinning class, but are perhaps going to stop at le café for une petite espresso before you go to your Rodin sculpture class sur La Rive Gauche. So off you go! Have a marvelous time tooling about Tulsa finding some summer shoes that will make you skip around in the sunshine. You are going to need some kick arse shoes, because next month we’re going to figure out some local haunts your husband or girlfriends can take you after a long, sweaty day of swimming lessons and sprinkler running