Show and Tell: Marion Shares Her Shoe Room

If you didn’t already send me a photo of your shoe collection, do so and I’ll post it. Go to the original post, and tell me: How many shoes do YOU own??

I’m delighted to share with you another reader’s shoe collection.  Marion sent in photos of her “Shoe Room”, a downstairs junk room that she transformed into a shoe lover’s paradise!  I spy at least one pair of Christian Louboutins, and I love the paintings of stilettos on the wall.  Here is a woman who is truly smitten with shoes!

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Show And Tell: Ellen of ITSDF Shares Her Shoe Closet

Over the weekend, I had some fun looking at a couple of your responses to my Show and Tell post.  You ladies have some seriously enviable shoe collections, and you’re pretty well organized to boot!  For instance, take a look at Ellen’s overflowing shoe collection, with all her stacked clear shoe boxes.

“My closet is a sick mess with even more shoes –and boots-and clothes that I’d be embarrassed to show, so I’m actually sending a pic of my “spare bedroom” with my overflow – I admit, the guilt of so many shoes ( and the desire for more) has motivated me to put a few of these up for sale on my own site! LOL.”

Not only is Ellen’s shoe collection impressive (and there’s more?!), but her auction site for shoe lovers is worth a peek if you want to add a few name-brand and designer shoes to your closet!  www.IfTheShoeDoesntFit.com.  You can also follow Ellen on Twitter @ITSDF

If you didn’t already send me a photo of your shoe collection, do so and I’ll post it. Go to the original post, and tell me: How many shoes do YOU own??

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Interview With Mme Weathersby Shoes


Mme. Movie La Reine Mid Calf Boot

1. How did you come up with the idea of creating Mme. Weathersby Shoes?

Mme creates apparel, handbags, and footwear, also furniture. The shoes are getting the most buzz at this point. I love history architecture, culture, and all things feminine. That’s where my ideas come from. I can look at a petal, and in my mind, a collection can come forth.

2. Your collection is gorgeous, how do you draw inspiration for your feminine designs?

Anything that stands still, planted or moving can inspire me. I love the arts, not so much pop culture. The past inspires me more than the condition of the world today.

3. What is your favorite shoe you’ve ever created, and why?

I don’t have one, but my mother always says, “This is my favorite.” Then another design is made, and I outdo myself. I like a good challenge. I’m an INTJ, so I enjoy perfection, and want my customers to know that they have purchased a piece of wearable art, that brings them good attention.

4. Tell me a little about the process of making your shoes – how long does it take, on average, to make one shoe, for example?

It depends on the factory. I have gotten some duds, believe me when I say that. I was going to do a peacock shoe, and the factory gave me a green shoe filled with ghastly feathers and sequins. It looked like Big Bird on crack! Their favorite line, is “You don’t like?”

5. What do you look for in a shoe?

Beauty, Wearability, tailored perfect merchandise.

6. Number of shoes you own?

Basically everything you see in my collection , and then some, not all of Mme shoes are shown to the public. I do not own a pair of designer shoes, but I would like to someday. Like a pair of Chanel Ballet Flats.

7. Favorite designer?

YVES SAINT LAURENT the original master of course. I have his books, DVD of him. That man was genius and I will always love what he created, and the great skills of his business partner Pierre Berge. The old masters are dying out. I would love to have met him. Remember these were the days when the designs had classy mothers, and sophisticated lives, and imitated what they saw, but made the clothing of the future , which is what we wear today. Christan Dior, the original master, is my favorite also. Remember Yves worked for Christin Dior when he was a teenager. Oh, don’t forget the genius of modernity Mr. Lagerfeld.

8. What’s on your playlist now?

I don’t listen to that much music except for upbeat jazz like IILYA-they DIED FOR BEAUTY. That album is great A++, remember that Revlon Commercial with Halle Berry, and a song called Bellisimo. I love listening to commercials because the songs are better than those on the radio, which I don’t listen to, except for talk radio, classical, and jazz. I love my SADE, Jackson 5, and I’ve been listening to old Motown music, and rediscovered a great group from the 80’s called the System. Oh, and Robert Palmer, what a great artist.

9. What was on your Christmas wish list?

I don’t really celebrate Christmas. Maybe if I get married, or have children I will celebrate it. But very soon. I would love to go to an orphanage and give presents to those parent-less souls, and make them happy and have a pep talk with them. I have a heart for orphans, and people that can not defend themselves.

10. What’s next for Mme Weathersby?

Loads of trade shows like WSA, The Magic, La Fashion Week, hopefully to premier the apparel, furniture and perfume, Haute Couture appointments etc…

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Design and Create Your Own Milk & Honey Shoes (Gift Idea)


The ultimate treat for any shoe lover would be to get to design a gorgeous pair of shoes, from heel to upper.  Well now that is possible, thanks to MilkandHoneyShoes.com.  Keep reading for a fun Q&A with co-founders and sisters Ilissa and Dorian Howard, and take a peek at my very own Milk & Honey™ creation.  SHOE SMITTEN EXCLUSIVE!  Get free shipping with promo code “shoesmitten” for one week starting today!

How did you come up with the idea of creating Milk & Honey Shoes?

M&H: We’re girls! And we’re high-maintenance! We got so tired of walking through the department stores and boutiques thinking, “if only this came in a 3” heel,” “if only this had an ankle strap.” “WHY can’t I find the perfect nude shoe?” “WHY don’t designers make any shoes in navy blue?” We turned our frustration into resourcefulness and started getting our shoes made to our exact specifications. It took awhile to perfect it, but once we did we couldn’t keep it a secret.

There are a few different sites out there now that allow women to design their own shoes. What sets your site apart?

M&H: Milk & honey is a company started by two sisters who are tried and true shoe lovers – and I think that comes through with our attention to detail about what women really want. We worked hard to provide practical options (“flats” with a 1” miniwedge) and fabulous options (the perfect snakeskin, peep toe pump). Also – the breadth of options — we really wanted our customers to be able to design their shoe, not just tweak options on an existing shoe. We also take tremendous pride in the quality of the materials we use and the quality of the final product.

What is the most creative shoe (in your opinion) you’ve ever seen created on Milk & Honey?

M&H: Wow – we’ve really seen some amazing designs and outrageous color combinations. We had one customer create a shoe using brightly colored purple glitter and zebra pony. I thought she was nuts – but you know what? It totally worked! I’m always amazed at how confident our customers are and often they are right on with their designs! Especially our brides. We have had brides design everything from strappy, neutral heels to glittery wedges to hot pink flats. We love what our brides come up with!

Tell me a little about the materials available, and other options women have when creating their custom shoes.

M&H: We use materials sourced from around the world – rich leathers, smooth patents, sleek snakeskin, fun patterns, shiny glitter, lustrous pony and soft suede – we offer colors from a bright green to the perfect shade of nude. And if we don’t have it? We can special order something to your exact specifications. We also have an entire selection of “animal friendly” materials – faux leathers, ultrasuede and faux snakesking. We make those shoes with synthetic lining and a compressed rubber bottom to make shopping easy for our vegan clients.

As for shoe design options – we offer 16 different toe options, 13 strap options, 3 different heel shapes in numerous heights, plus embellishments like flowers, studs, knots and other unique options to perfectly customize your shoe.

Once someone orders a pair, what’s the process of bringing them to life?

M&H: We work with very skilled artisans who handcraft each individual shoe. If there are specific requests we send a designer to the markets to specially source the material. Once the shoe is complete, Ilissa reviews each pair of shoes with our cobbler to ensure that they are absolutely perfect. Once they are approved they are wrapped in recycled tissue paper and put in a clear shoebox (for easy storage) and shipped out.

I have to ask…how many shoes do you own?
M&H: If there was such thing as “too many” I’d say that, but instead I’m thinking not enough! I’m no Imelda Marcos but I did recently have to buy more shoe racks!

Who is your favorite designer?

M&H: I am really enjoying Zac Posen, Karen Millen, and Rodarte right now. There is a new designer in LA, Joanna August — I’m obsessed with the jewel-toned colors she uses – at night I dream about her electric blue. I basically love anything with soft material and rich colors.

What’s on your playlist now?

M&H: I am currently obsessed with the sounds of Mumford and Sons, find myself humming Cee Lo Green’s new song all the time, I’m loving having Frentik’s “Not a Bitch” on my running playlist and, as always, Bon Jovi.

What’s on your Christmas wish list?

M&H: My sister and I always design a pair of shoes for each other for birthdays and holidays – I can’t wait to see what she makes me this year! I also really want new lip gloss from Benefit, a vintage candelabra for my deck, the third season of MAD MEN on DVD, a pair of jeans that fit me perfectly…. and world peace.

Complete the phrase: “Wearing my favorite pair of shoes has the same effect on me as…”

M&H: …growing three inches, seeing an ex right after getting my hair blown-out, and being surrounded by my girlfriends – it gives me confidence, makes me walk a little taller (literally and figuratively) and just puts a smile on my face.

Ready to see my own shoe design?  Here you go!  I think I’ll call her MOLLY:

Inspired by a few of my favorite things this holiday season, MOLLY is a real beauty if I do say so myself!  With her gorgeous aubergine velvet bow, dalmatian print upper and 4.5-inch black leather heel, MOLLY will add some cheer to any bombshell party dress.  Create your own Milk & Honey shoes at www.milkandhoneyshoes.com!

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Q&A With Naya Shoe Designer Kasey Gibbs

Here’s a new shoe line with a conscious that I have been following for some time.  If you’ve been reading my blog you might be familiar with the brand, as I have written about Naya a couple of times before.  I currently own two pairs – the Telluride (Spring 2010) and Bakula (Fall 2010).  Naya keeps producing gorgeous, eco-friendly styles that are as kind to your feet as they are to the earth (and did I mention, they’re GORGEOUS).  The brand’s designer Kasey Gibbs took the time to have a phone chat with me and answer some questions about going green, her latest collections, and what she looks for in a shoe.  Read on for more!

What was the hardest thing about going green?

It’s really a paradigm shift for people because for so long it’s been about economies of scale and how to make lots of shoes, make them as fast as is physically possible, and with that territory comes shortcuts that are maybe not as healthy for the environment.  It’s a big shift, and the best thing that’s come out of that is that I have vendors now coming to me knocking on my door saying, ‘we see what you guys are doing, we want to be a part of this’.  It might be less expensive (going green) because you’re saving materials and you’re not having to spend so much money on raw materials.

What inspired your spring collection?

We look at what’s happening in the fashion world, and then we add a little Naya-tude to it.  We’ve got open-toed ankle booties and sandals that have a very organic look, as opposed to being very round or square or geometric, and we’ve done it in a very soft and feminine and an organic way.  It almost looks like lace.  And then we’ve got another group that harkens back to tribal details.  We’ve got a lot of beautiful shoes with lacing treatments on them that have that sort of huarache-esque look but they’re not huarache shoes.  We’ve got slingbacks and cute little flats.  And then drawing out from nature, we’ve got a whole group of shoes with interlaced pieces that look like a leaf coming up the front of the foot.  They’re beautiful.

And on the heights of the heels, are you going to have a variety or are you going in a certain direction?

We do have some higher heels.  Our customer is obviously looking for comfort as well as beautiful shoes, so we have a lot of mid-heel heights as well.  Our highest heel is about 3 1/2 inches high with the platform.

What is your favorite shoe from the spring collection?

We have a group of shoes with a tie-dyed flower on them.  And I call them the Sugar Magnolia collection.  There’s a lot of color to them, and it makes them really beautiful.  We have a lot of natural colors in the line but we also think the Naya customer is looking for unique colors.  We’ve got a really great red we call venom, a hot mustard color, a really beautiful bright green (for later in the season), and a lot of dusty turquoises and roses.

Back to the fall collection, which shoe is your favorite?

The Bakula, which is a platform pump with an origami flower on the side of it.  I wear it during the weekend, to brunch, and all the time during the week.  With skirts, with pleated pants and high-waisted pants, love it.  The boots are just great too, and I love the Nefertiti.  Every woman loves the Briar (same heel height as the bakula) with a tie across the top of it with beautiful metallics, and I have a feeling we have to vote that as the number one shoe in the line for fall.

What do you find the most attractive about shoes?

For me, I look for the details.  I don’t work in an industry where I have to be around customers all the time, and my job entails packing boxes and running around and working in a more creative environment, so I look for shoes to go with what I’ve already got and are really attitude pieces.  A shoe can completely change an outfit, and it’s the details that set people apart, whether it’s a gigantic cocktail ring or a pair of amazing shoes with a great heel or shape. They don’t have to be high but something really amazing and beautiful.

What’s next for Naya?

The brand is so new, right now what we’re focusing on is what we can do with the communities.  We’re working on Recycle America Day later in the month of November.  We’re also tag-teaming with Soles4Souls, and at Shoes.com if you order a pair of shoes, a little card comes in the box that says if you put a gently used  pair of shoes in this box and send it back, we’ll donate it to Souls4Soles for someone that’s less advantaged that needs footwear, and then they’ll give you a tax write-off as well as a coupon to buy more shoes.  It’s a nudge to do the right thing and to get new shoes.  We’re working on what’s going to happen for Earth Day next year, because launching the brand on Earth Day was a big success for us and we were able to plant 5,000 trees.  We think the brand does have potential as a lifestyle brand so we’re starting to explore that.

Anything else you’d like to share with us?

Naya shoes are beautiful AND comfortable, and they soften your footprint.  I stand behind this message – I drive a hybrid vehicle, I compost, recycle, we pay energy credits in my household, so we really stand behind the brand in that respect, as well as making sure the shoes are beautiful and comfortable.

Thanks to Kasey and Naya Shoes for taking the time for this interview!  Naya is definitely on my brand watch list.  You can learn more at NayaShoes.com, and shop the collection at Shoes.com.

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