What Z wants. Or doesn’t want

What I’ve learnt about myself over the years is, I’m not at all unusual. What I do or think is what a lot of other people do too. So I suspect others do the same as me in regard to footwear too.

The thing is, I have pretty well given up wearing *proper* shoes. By this, I mean fairly smart shoes with heels, not necessarily high, maybe a couple of inches or so; court shoes or fashion shoes or whatever – I just don’t do it any more. For the last few years, I’ve spent the winter in boots and gone straight to the summer in open sandals.

The last pair of shoes I remember buying was the very nice and rather expensive ones I bought for Ronan and Dora’s wedding, back in August 2014. I wore them for my own wedding to Tim. I’ve worn them on a few other occasions and I’ve worn my other shoes too, once in a while, but I don’t think I’ve bought any. I’ve looked, but not found anything I even wanted to try on. I have bought several pairs of boots and sandals and walking shoes; this isn’t a moneysaving thing but I’ve simply given up.

Part of it was that my bad hip meant that I couldn’t manage heels any longer, over an inch or so (nor could I have very flat shoes, in fact). But even there, I wore the shoes I bought last time I was in the same situation because I couldn’t find what I wanted. I’ve got limited time and patience and, if I can’t find what I want pretty damn quick, I give up and manage with what I’ve got. It’s the same with clothes. I’ve been looking for short coats/jackets/coats for two years now and found nothing. I did buy myself a new coat two and a half years ago, and would quite like something else as an alternative, but no joy. And as for jackets, I’m really prepared to be easy-going, but the garments just aren’t out there. I don’t think it’s me, I’m not even hard to please.

In regard to the shoes though, it’s really economical. Easy on the stockings, wearing boots. They’re more comfortable, too. Maybe it’s just age – but I have been taking notice, walking along the streets, and hardly anyone wears smart shoes any more. If they do, it’s people who’ve popped out of their office at lunch time.

Shops are in a parlous state, quite a number have closed and others are struggling. But are they selling what we want to buy? I don’t find that they are. But I’m old and unfashionable anyway, so perhaps my judgement isn’t fair. I do buy what I want to buy, though, they just have to offer what I want.

5 comments on “What Z wants. Or doesn’t want

  1. Nellig

    Couldn’t agree more. Clothes shopping online is more successful, as long as you steel yourself to return things that don’t fit (apparently some people can’t be bothered and just keep ’em). Same goes for shoes. For me it’s Doc Martens, Converse or Skechers all the way down. Haven’t shopped in person for years now.

  2. PixieMum

    Definitely I’m in agreement with you, finding shoes to fit is a great problem for me but since January I have been wearing slightly heeled black Gabor lace ups bought on recommendation of musculoskeletal physiotherapist. Very flat footwear was not recommended, I don’t think my Celtic & Co slippers would pass muster.

    Whilst going around the Dior exhibition with DD last Saturday I noticed the footwear of the other punters comparing the shoes of the fifties that were on display and the trainers and clumpy boots of today, am reminded of my Mother who wore only high heeled shoes. On a holiday in Somerset she realised this wasn’t practical walking on beaches and in the countryside, we went on a coach trip, in South Milton she shopped for a pair of flat shoes rather than stopping for tea.

    When on holiday I search out shoe shops, with surprising success in outof the way places, need to try shoes on so would never buy them online, nor with clothes, I like to feel the fabric and try stuff on.

  3. Z Post author

    I’ve got two pairs of Celtic boots and they’re my favourites. I have had more success buying boots online than shoes, probably because the fit is more forgiving. I’m not sure about buying a coat online, the length and fit have to be just right. I was tempted by a Hobbs one in the sale, but I couldn’t quite face repacking and returning!

  4. Blue Witch

    Same here.

    I think the problem is that the designers and buyers are bright young things and those with the money to buy higher-end, quality, stuff that will last, are 60+s.

    This huge disconnect means shops don’t stock what older people want, and this sector won’t just blindly buy what’s marketed to them: they’d sooner make do with what they already have.

    More and more I’m going back to making my own, as I did in my teens, when the market was the opposite way around, for the opposite reasons (ie older designers and buyers, not producing/sourcing what younger people wanted).

    1. Z Post author

      I hated dressmaking then and I don’t have a sewing machine now. I made a few dresses for Eloise when she was little and, then, all our curtains. I’d rather buy my clothes! Or go without, of course.


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