Remember my beloved Cassidy booties?
Cole Haan, $278, 2.75" heel.
Well, I took them back. Here's why. They were tighter everywhere than the Cassidy's of last year. I wore them to a party and had to take them off halfway through they hurt so much. TAKE THEM OFF! Total fashion nightmare. I wore my old Cassidys today and I'm pretty sure I could sport them in a marathon with little to no discomfort. Also, I realized I don't want to settle for nubuck (the only black material I could find them in). Nubuck is fine if you're looking for that suede, casual look and there's no chance it will get dirty or wet. But that is the opposite of my situation. I want something sleek, work appropriate, and that I can clean to a new shine. And at these price points, I'm going to get picky.
Speaking of high price points, as a substitute, I settled on these:
Rag & Bone, Newbury ankle boots, $495, 3.25" heel
I wore them all day yesterday and here's what I think. As compared to the Cassidy bootie, the first thing I noticed was that in the same size, they are roomier throughout. I think that comes from a slightly wider width, but it's not wide enough to look off (or slip off). They are also about a half inch higher than the Cassidy's and almost on the too-tall side for me. It's not really the hight of the heel that determines whether I can wear it, unfortunately (if it were I'd just know not to buy above a certain height). Like many things, it's really all about proportions. How close the heel is to the toe (the angle is a little more harsh the smaller the foot is), where the shoe's heel is positioned in relation to the center of gravity of my heel, etc. And these boots are just on the "but it's ok" side of being a little too high. All heels shorten your stride, but these boots make me feel like my stride is artificially shortened. It's not enough to make me return them, they are really comfortable despite the stride issue and the height. And you do get the consolation of being taller. You just have to walk slower.
They look adorable with everything - bootcuts, skinny jeans, work pants, dresses. Have I mentioned I'm excited for fall?
So excited in fact that I also purchased a related long-time wish-list item. I needed new tall black flat boots. The ones I've got are Cole Haans from three or four years ago and they're made of super thin leather that has been great for clinging to my skinny calf but the disadvantage is that they have stretched out over the years and look a little rippled, despite regular conditioning. They're in ok shape (I am quite diligent about maintenance of all of my leather shoes and bags) and I'll still wear them, but I needed something a little sturdier. They still needed to be dressy enough for work though. The other problem with the old CH's is that they have a slightly elongated and then squared off toe. So not chic. Was that ever popular? Finally, although the new tall boots have a little gappiness and don't cling to my calf as well as the old ones, that can come in handy when I'm wearing pants or leggings. The old boots can't be worn over anything but socks. The new ones I can wear with anything. I do find it kind of obscene that I have to have one pair that is calf-clinging for when I'm wearing skirts and dresses and one pair that can go over skinny pants. But being fashionable is rarely cheap.
Here are the new additions:
Cole Haan Dover, $448
These are amazing. The heel doesn't rub like other tall boots (if you get the right size) and they have Nike Air technology. The style is classic and neat. And they look high-quality. You can't tell from the picture but they have a full zip up the inside of the calf. The heel, I think, is perfect for flats. The tread is pretty serious and the sole comes out quite a bit from the upper which is not my favorite thing about them but it will probably be better for the boot's longevity in wet weather.
So my fall shoe collection is complete (see this and this post too for more eye candy!). Too bad it's going to be in the 80's where I live this week!