Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Happy Shoe Year!

For my last post of 2008, I bring you a shoe story. It's a tale of high heels, regret, sadness, and, finally, joy...

Once upon a time, Material Girl got some money for Christmas, so she went to her favorite store, Anthropologie, to spend it. It was a great shopping day, for Material Girl liked most everything she tried on. However, that made for some tough decisions.

One of the things she liked was an exquisite pair of saffron colored suede peep-toe pumps by Chie Mihari. She wanted to take them home with her so badly. But, even on sale, the shoes were expensive. If she bought them she would have to put back several of the lovely on-sale sweaters she had chosen.

So, although it was very difficult because the shoes would be perfect with the new dress handsome prince Cheapy had just bestowed upon her, Material Girl did not purchase the shoes.

She was so happy with her new sweaters and new jacket, but she still thought of the shoes and was full of regret--and out of money.

Then Material Girl checked the website of her favorite store and lo and behold--the shoes! And in her size! And twenty dollars cheaper! She put them in her shopping cart. Pay day was only a few days away. When Material Girl had some money once again she would have the shoes as her own.

Then suddenly a mean old witch purchased the shoes right from Material Girl's cart! They were sold out! Material Girl was oh so sad. She even moped and pouted a little.

The next day Material Girl had a babysitter and, hopeful, she ventured back to the store to see if they shoes were still there. She was a bit worried because there had been but one pair when she shopped last. She quickly headed to the sale forest to the very spot where she had found the shoes before. Oh no! They were gone. Another mean old witch must have bought them. Material Girl was sad once again.

But wait...a sales associate had rearranged the shoe display--she spotted them in another place. They would be hers! Hurrah! Hurrah!

Material Girl brought the shoes home and tried them on with her new dress. They were perfect. They were lovely. And Material Girl and her new shoes lived happily every after.

Happy new year, fellow shoppers.

May your 2009 be full of happy shoe tales!

Monday, December 29, 2008

Shopping with Cheapy at Banana Republic

The Saturday night before Christmas, Cheapy and I had a babysitter and nothing much to do, so we had some wine and went shopping. He wanted to buy some clothes for his dad for the holidays. There was nothing much to be excited about in the Gap (either for me or for my father-in-law) so we hit Banana Republic, and we hit it hard.

Cheapy purchased several items for his father as well as buying another version of his favorite outfit--a grey t-shirt, a grey sweater and khakis. (I'm sure I've mentioned how dull his closet is.) He did bring in a little color with a medium green tee which was a tad surprising for the king of beige. The wine must have made him adventurous!

The wine also made Cheapy want a Material Girl fashion show. I tried on at least half a dozen dresses, even more jackets and sweaters (I bought two sweaters), and a handful of pants.

Cheapy and I and the sales person (who kept saying, "That is hot!") all loved this dress on me.

If you're a regular reader, you know that I would leave the house covered in sequins every day if I could. This dress is a beauty. But, realistically, I have no idea where I would ever where it. Not that that's stopped me before--I have a few treasures in my closet just waiting for the perfect occasion to eventually arrive. This treasure was a tad pricey, even at 40% off, to be a one-day-I'll-wear-it dress. (MSRP is $225.) It's now on sale for $129 plus an extra 20% off. If I had somewhere fancy to go on New Year's Eve and it was going to be above 55 degrees that night I'd be at Banana tomorrow to see if there's one left in my size.

Instead of sequins, I went home with black taffeta. I tried on the animal print version pictured below which I loved, but Cheapy was in favor of the black (he's got a thing for LBDs) and he was buying, so black it was. I'm pretty crazy about this dress. I really did not want to take it off when I was in the dressing room. Oh--and it's got pockets! I'm not in favor of the dress with a necklace as it's shown below, however--why fussy up that interesting neckline? I'll just wear it with formidable earring and some amazing shoes. (More on those in a future post.)

If you dig this print as much as I do, click over to the Banana Republic site or hit the store--it's on sale for $109 from $175, plus an extra 20% off. (They're having a major sale in store and online. Maybe I will be at Banana tomorrow...)

Thursday, December 18, 2008

The One Thing That Always Makes Me Happy No Matter How Crappy the Weather Is: Boots

Greetings fellow shoppers! Did you miss me as much as I've missed you? It's been more than a month since I've posted. Why, you ask? Could it be that Material Girl has not been shopping?

Pretty much.

It's not the bad economy stopping me--it's winter. Getting dressed is just a big cold ball of no fun in the winter. I can't bear the thought of icy breezes wafting up a skirt or dress. And having even partially bear legs in 20 degree weather...ugh. (Sure, there are tights. But tights are not particularly warm and I've yet to find a pair that doesn't give me at least a little bit of a muffin top.) So it's pants pants pants. Trouble is I only have like two winter weight pairs and they're both too short to wear with heels. (Go buy some new pants, you say? Spend a few days being 5'2" and go pants shopping then tell me that again.)

So it's really just jeans jeans jeans which is boring boring boring. Normally in troubled times like these I would shop to cheer myself up. I went out a few times (pants shopping and otherwise) and always came home empty handed. Oh so sad. There was only one thing left to do: Buy boots.

I'd recently purchased a white zip-up pair of Docs that I really love (with my pants), but some days are simply not white boot days, so I took advantage of a sale at and bought the Doctor Marten's Zena boots in black (love the zippers!). They're make me feel a little tough on snowy and icy days (when wearing heels would just be silly).

But this basic black goth kid-ish boot, while comfy, versatile and useful, wasn't quite cutting it as the footwear to pull me out of the winter yucks . I needed something cuter, girlier...shinier.

I'd been coveting a pair of gold Alexander Hotto ankle boots on for a couple of months. They'd been sitting in my shopping cart. I visited my shopping cart several times a week to make sure the last pair in my size hadn't been sold out from under me. So I made a declaration: If they still have them on Monday when I get paid, I'm buying them. (Because who doesn't make shopping declarations? Come on--at least once you've said, "I know that sweater was too expensive, but if I go to the store today and they still have one in my size that must mean I was meant to have it.")

Shopping kismet was in my corner and the boots arrived on Wednesday. They're quite fabulous and, indeed, quite shiny. Kinda like wearing the sun right on my feet. Ha! Take that winter!

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Saturday Night with Cheapy: Dinner, Wine, Fly London & My New Sweater

Shoetopia, the fab shoe store next to my favorite date-night restaurant, had an anniversary sale this weekend. I planned my date with Cheapy: wine store, shoe store, dinner, bar.

Cheapy bought me these incredibly comfortable Fly London buckled pumps for $20 off of the MSRP. (Cheapy is not so cheap after a sampling half a dozen wines.)

I almost got them in grey and black--I liked the combo and they'd go with everything--but Cheapy insisted on the red, which was a good choice.

Red was a theme for the night: red wine, red shoes, and red sweater--I'd finally purchased an Anthro beauty I'd have my eye on for a while and got compliments everywhere I went (even from Cheapy). I love love love this sweater. It's gorgeous, it's got a great shape, it's warm, it fits perfectly. I wore it with my destroyed Gap jeans and a seafoam grean lacy camisole which peeked out from the bottom.

It had been a raining most of Saturday (don't get me started on my flooding basement nightmare), so I also wore my new Tretorn Plask mid-calf rain boots I just bought in seal brown. I have a tall version in red, but they don't work well with pants. This shorter version is perfect with jeans, and, like their taller cousins, are deliciously comfortable and the best looking rain boots I've seen.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Going Scarf Crazy

I've had this black Pashmina for years and it's big and soft and warm and cozy I and love it. I ordered a couple of different colored ones from the same website a while ago, and I didn't like them. They didn't feel like that were the same quality as my black one. I sent them back.

Still, I wanted to expand my Pashmina wardrobe--fall is here; it's cold outside and in my office, so they are a really useful accessory. I clicked around online for a while and found Nimli, a site that features clothes, accessories and other items for the "natural, organic & green lifestyle."

They offered a huge array of wraps of all kinds, in wool, Pashmina and silk, solid and ombre, embellished and plain.

I got this cashmere Pashmina shawl in the blue pictured here, and in shades of rosey pink. It feels luxurious, like I'd-love-to-use-it-as-a-blanket soft.

I got this silk ruffle scarf in black (I had a hard time choosing a color) and I adore it. I'll be wearing this all winter.

Finally, I got a silk chiffon wrap in plum. (I wore this to work yesterday with a black boatneck dress from the Gap.) This is my least favorite. It's flimsy--as is all chiffon--and already has a snag. The silk doesn't feel particularly soft. The color is great, however.

I'd shop through this site again because overall I'm pleased with the products. I also like a lot of the clothing and jewelry offered on the site. Plus the shipping is free. However the items took forever to arrive. Three weeks after my AmEx had been charged, still no scarves. I emailed Nimli customer service, and the items arrived two days later, so I'm hoping it was a flukey glitch.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Learning About the Fashion World from Daniel Vosovic

Designer and Project Runway Season 2 alum Daniel Vosovic is currently on a tour to promote his new book Fashion Inside Out: Daniel V's Guide to How Style Happens from Inspiration to Runway and Beyond and he recently made a stop at my local independent bookseller.

I loved him. He came across as darling, down-to-earth, and driven and told stories of being on Runway, living in Florence and London, his days in as a young gymnast, his time in design school, and more, and fielded questions from the young and well-styled audience. I had popped into Antrhopologie before the signing and saw four college age boys browsing, which is not something I see ever in Anthro. When I got to the bookstore the four were already planted in the seats for the book signing. They were obviously fashion design students. I wish I would have taken their picture.

I wore a black tee and skinny black pants topped with my I-just-laid-people -off-now-I'm-emotionally-shopping Anthropologie army green sweater, which, to use a Tim Gunn-ism, is the most soul-stirring item in my closet. And by the way, Daniel said Tim Gunn is truly as nice as he seems on TV--he wrote the foreword for Fashion Inside Out.

I've read through a bit an Daniel's book which is filled with gorgeous pictures and a lot of Q&As with fashion industry insiders--designers, photogs, stylists and the like. The book offers a beautiful package (the cover has a velvety texture and online cover images don't do it justice) and great content. I'm looking forward to reading the rest.

One great moment from the signing--Daniel noticed a couple in the crowd who were from his hometown. When it was their turn to have a book signed, they handed him a cell phone and he happily talked to their daughter who had had taught in gymnastics. The whole exchange was quite adorable, including his observation that the parents had moved away from the hometown, but their kids all stayed.

Here's Daniel Vosovic signing his book.
His inscription: "Design Your Own Destiny."

Saturday, November 8, 2008

My First New Pair of Docs Since the '80s

It's been decades, literally, since I've purchased a pair of Dr. Marten's boots. But I saw these in an ad and I had to have them--the pointed toes, the winter white, the zippers! (The Timberland boots I got recently zip up the back which I'm really digging, although I get confused every morning that I put them on and reach for the non-existent side zipper).

I wasn't sure about these as first. I ran them past my stylish friend, and she was iffy but thought I could pull them off. I considered getting them in black, but I felt like that was too goth kid for a Material Girl my age. Then I saw that was having a $20-off-a-purchase-over-$100 sale. That's a good offer, but I hate to wait for the non-overnight shipping. Fortunately endless has a 100% price guarantee, so they matched the onlineshoes price and shipped them to me overnight. And I super dig them.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Retail Is in Bad Shape--I've Got to Do My Part

Below is the retail news from NPR. It isn't pretty fellow shoppers. I fear for the under-construction Nordstrom at The Mall that's this close to being finished.

October Retail Sales Plummet Amid Financial Crisis

U.S. retail chains posted the worst monthly sales data in more than 30 years, as the financial crisis forced consumers to cut spending sharply in October.

The International Council of Shopping Centers called the retail sales environment "simply awful" and said the October results were the worst it had seen in 35 years.

The ICSC said it pared its forecast for what were already expected to be dismal holiday season sales. It now expect sales in November and December to rise 1 percent, down from its prior view for a gain of 1.7 percent.

The picture was particularly bleak for high-end retail stores. Saks and Nordstrom both had double digit declines in same store sales last month. In stores open more than a year, Saks' sales dropped more than 16 percent, while sales at Nordstrom were down 15.7 percent.

Kohl's, J.C. Penney and Macy's fared a little better, but they still saw sales slump in October. Kohl's same-store sales fell 9 percent in October, below expectations of a 6.4 percent decline. Department store operator Macy's, parent of Macy's and Bloomingdale's chains, reported a 6.3 percent drop.

J.C. Penney's October sales fell 13 percent, beating analyst expectations of a 13.2 percent slide.

Wal-Mart Stores Inc. provided a bright spot in the report. Its sales increased 2.4 percent. The company now says it will introduce new price cuts every week until Christmas -- trying to win an even bigger market share.

Lest you think I've been a bad blogger lately, I've actually just been a bad shopper. I don't have much to report--not much, but a little. There's a boot, some accessories, and maybe an eBay find or two. Watch for some weekend posts.

(In addition to my uncharacteristic lack of retailing, I've also been awash in everything election. Material Girl is happy with the results--yesterday I dressed in blue to match Ohio.)

Now let's all do our duty and get out there and shop--I assure you there are sales and lot of 'em. The bad economy can be good for bargain hunters. (And if Sarah Palin can spend $150,000 on an election wardrobe, we all deserve an on-sale new outfit or two at the very least.)

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Confession: I Love Infomercials (but Not Cindy Crawford's Meaningful Beauty)

If you know me very well, you probably know I'm a fan of the infomercial. Truth be told I cannot flip past one without stopping to watch. Proactive Solution makes me cry. Total Gym get me fired up for my next workout. That lady with the hand blender thingy who make fat free whipped cream in a plastic cup in seconds--well she amuses me greatly. And don't get me started on the force of nature that is Ron Popeil.

Although I love to watch infomercials, it's rare that I actually make a purchase. I did get the Jack Lalanne Power Juicer when I was pregnant and fruit-and-vegetable-juiced my way through 41 weeks of healthy pregnancy. (I still use it and I still like it.) Recently Cheapy bought a razor blade sharpener from TV. You know, because razor blades are expensive. Every morning I hear him using the cheap plastic battery operated device (which was $14.99 plus S&H), and he's getting a clean close shave--no nicks--and I haven't bought a $20 package of Mach III Turbo blades since.

When I was stuck in a beach house with my in-laws for a week this summer, I often headed back to my bedroom after making my oatmeal to escape the cacophony and enjoy some morning TV--talk shows, Lifetime movies and infomercials. And there I discovered Cindy Crawford's Meaningful Beauty. Ah, what the hell, though I. I'm not getting any younger. I'll give it a try. I grabbed my cell phone and ordered the whole enchilada of face goodies (including bonus gifts!).

Apparently Cindy developed these products along with her French dermatologist using an enzyme from a melon that never seems to rot. It took me almost one month to get my shipment of products. I followed the directions exactly. I used them morning and night. I thought maybe my skin was feeling a little softer. Maybe. I wanted to give them some time--it can take a bit for your face to adjust to new products.

So here's my verdict: they are on their way back and I'm expecting a full refund per their 90-day money back guarantee. The first week my face felt a little dry. The second week, flaky. My makeup was not going on very well. I broke out around my mouth. Week three I had a rash on my neck and chest. It itched. (I suspect the decollete cream may be to blame.)

Cindy, it seems, has skin that has not aged a day since the early '80s. She may drink the blood of virgins, or perhaps she sold her soul to the devil, or maybe she's a cyborg of some sort. But I suspect she's simply got some damn good genes. And while her Meaningful Beauty products purport to do wonders for her and Mariel Hemingway, these products are definitely not for me.

After three days back on my old regimen of Burt's Bees, Yes to Carrots, Sonya Dakar 365, and Arbonne, I'm feeling much much better, and so is my face.

Timberland Bargains from

My left knee has been giving me some trouble lately. The doctor told me: no yoga, no heels, no bending knee while sitting. Only one of those things is at all likely to happen. I did, however, decide that doc was, in effect, ordering me to shop for some flatter boots. (The day they gave me a brace which I hate and won't be wearing, I had on these.)

I clicked around for a bit and found these cool looking Timberland Flora boots on Amazon at a great price and I bought them. Then I googled the boot and found them on for even cheaper, so I canceled the Amazon transaction and bought them from 6pm. They're super comfortable and I love the look of them. In person they're a warm caramel color--good fall footwear. (They've since completely sold out on 6pm.)

Since I was so satisfied with these boots, I explored 6pm for other Timberland styles. There are a number of them that I dug, but very few were left in size 8.5--they've all gone of sale for $29.95 and seem to be moving fast. (I had a few pairs in my shopping cart for a couple of days and they went out of stock before I could snap them up.) I did find these rock star ankle boots. I couldn't decide on which color to get--the safe black or the wacky purple, so I got both. (They were cheap, fellow shoppers.)

Granted, these are not flat by a longshot, but they look like a steady wedge, they're cool, and I couldn't pass them up at the price.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Jeans, Jeans, They're Good for Your Heart

Last night Cheapy Junior's nursery school had a kids-and-dads party, which meant I had one hour to myself. I made a list of possible ways to make use of those precious 60 minutes: watch TV, read a book, iron, do a little closet editing, give myself a facial, sit on the couch and stare at the wall...finally I decided to go to The Mall.

I really love wondering around The Mall on a weeknight. It's so empty, so warm, so full of stuff! There were a mere handful of fellow shoppers at the Gap, where I tried on dresses, tops, and several pair of jeans. I have to say I'm not that into what the Gap's got going on for fall--there was a definite lumberjack-with-ruffles theme, and the basics were boring (tweed and puffer jackets?).

But I was there for denim. My favorite pair of jeans ever is getting a tad threadbare. There are holes and fraying and all the stuff that makes worn-in jeans cool. But I'm afraid in a few more weekends there may be new holes surfacing near the cheeks and lady bits--and that's never cool.

I tried on the Essential (bad), the Straight (badder), the Curvy (baddest) and I ended up with my old favorite. The Long and Lean is my jean (which is funny because I am neither). The mid-rise is just right, the slight flair offers a good balance, the bit of stretch makes them as comfy as sweats, and the Ankle version is just the right length (and at least a full inch longer than my old pair. Since the Gap introduced Petite, Ankle's inseam has increased.)

I got one pair in the lightest wash because that was the only one in stock in my size. I'd really like some dark jeans for evenings and wearing to work, but my new super soft, perfect fitting pair are now my official Saturday pants.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

A Happy Happy Saturday at Anthropologie

Did you ever have one of those shopping days when you loved everything you tried on and everything you tried on was on sale? That was pretty much my Saturday afternoon at Anthropologie. It was a tad crowded in the store (hasn't anyone told the ladies that the economy is bad?), but there was a good shopping vibe in the air and I enjoyed some chats with fellow shoppers while waiting for fitting rooms. If I would have had unlimited time and an unlimited discretionary fund I could have come home with a trunk full. (And let me tell you, there are times when I hit Anthro and everything is just all wrong.)

First I picked up a couple of sweaters , both in a shade of brown.

The sweater on the left is thick and textural and has giant wooden buttons, but it's short (even more cropped in the back than the front) so the bulk doesn't overwhelm. It's also a tad off the shoulder. It's pretty great over everything I've tried it on with.

Brown sweater number two is sort of a scarf-sweater hybrid. The back is cropped, the front long and fringy. It also sports big wooden buttons and fastens with a formidable hook and eye. I love the asymmetrical lapels and the cozy pockets. This makes me long for fall.

I got the deal of the century on the fitted blue jacket (which is a much lighter color in person)--$19.99 from $98. It fits like a dream, darted in all the right places with a touch of a peplum happening. I'm also a fan of the three-quarter sleeves. (I have a Banana Republic bargain of a jacket in my alterations pile that I just cannot wear until the sleeves are shorter.)

I also picked up a perfectly pintucked little white shirt with a touch of ruffle at the chest. It's great under this jacket. (I couldn't find it online.)

The top below (left) was not a Saturday Anthro find--I got it while in Portland--but it's become my new favorite shirt. I like it so much I want it in the other motif (below right). I actually went to Anthro on Saturday specifically to buy the top in the other color scheme, but they only carried the yellow and blue plaid in the store. I'm still thinking about ordering the other top online but I just hate the Anthropologie shipping fees.

A side note on my super shopping: Cheapy had taken Cheapy Junior to see a bat exhibit at the museum center and kept texting me bat pictures--not what I wanted to see while I was there in my happy place, the dressing room. I'm not a fan of the bat. I'm happy bats exist--I know the world needs them. But I prefer to do everything possible to never hang out in the same room with them on purpose. Oh oh oh do they creep me out. Bad Cheapy!

More Great Vintage Dresses from Violetville and Timeless Vixen

My two favorite eBay sellers for vintage are without a doubt Timeless Vixen and Violetville. Both of these eBay stores offer an amazing array of fab vintage finds--mostly dresses, lot of coats--week after week after week. Visiting these online shops is like stepping into well-edited vintage boutiques--no crap to wade through, no questionable items. Nothing but peaches! I purchase from both over and over.

Recently from Timeless Vixen I got this two piece dress and matching jacket '40s ensemble. (I'm trying to decide whether to have it altered.) I love the lapels and the buttons.

I also got this gorgeous sequined wiggle cocktail dress. It fits like it was made for me (although I don't think I could eat a big meal while wearing it.)

And from Violetville I won the auction for this LBD with a twist--thick fringe hangs all around from the neckline. That has Material Girl written all over it.

So, fellow shoppers, if you're in need of a vintage show stopper, click on over to eBay and see what Timeless Vixen and Violetville have going on. They both offer items in XS-XL. Listings include tons of photos of the clothing on happy blond models. They give all the measurements you'll need (always go by measurements when buying vintage). And the auctions have reasonable starting bids (although they can end on the high side). Just promise not to bid anything I want.

Monday, October 13, 2008

Shopping with Cheapy--Boots from Shoetopia

Cheapy and I had dinner with friends last Friday night at one of our favorite restaurants, Slims. The food is terrific, the atmosphere is cool, the staff is great, and it's right next to Shoetopia (which, if you ask me, is the perfect name for a shoe store). We spent some time at the wine store on the way to the Slims (you have to bring your own), so Cheapy was happy and he was digging a lot of the Shoetopia inventory (as was I).

He bought me these boots by J Shoes. I'm in desperate need of ankle boots and I loved the two-tone leather, the scrunchy ankle tie and the wonderfully padded sole.

I was not familiar with J Shoes before I tried these on. They have a small selection of their boots and shoes on endless and a smaller selection on Zappos. The boots I got are available in black on both sites--but they're less expensive at Shoetopia.

Cheapy must really like the design sense of this brand. He bought this pair of J Shoes from Johnny Sole in Portland.

It's going to kill Cheapy when I tell him they're on clearance on Amazon and are almost $100 less than he paid.

Shiny Things and Tees from J Crew

I recently got an email from my friends at J Crew announcing free shipping so naturally I hightailed it to their website. I was not mindlessly perusing, however. I had a few things in mind.

When I visited Portland recently, Cheapy and I hopped off the train right next to a 2-story J Crew. (Men's stuff lived upstairs.) I purchased what quickly became three of my favorite t-shirts. I got two long-sleeved waffle weave henleys (that I wore all over Portland because I had packed for much warmer weather) and this great salmony pink tee with floral embellishments (which totally matches the Argenteeny Pinkini polish that's now on my toes). It fits me perfectly--maybe I should get it in a few more colors.)

While I was shopping at the Portland J Crew I also tried on this dark gold lamé top. I really loved it--I'm a sucker for shiny--but the only ones they had left in stock wouldn't quite button over the girls. Happily it was way on clearance in the J Crew site.

The trouble was they also offered the top in two silvery shades (the darker on is below) and a shiny white. Since I couldn't decide between gold and silver I got one of each--you never know what type of metallic you'll be in the mood for when you're in the mood to wear a shiny shirt. (I'm thinking these will be fun layered under jackets, vests, sweaters and dresses for fall and winter.)

Also on final sale was this tee declaring "Seize the Day" in Italian and it ended up in my shopping cart too.

When I got this tee in the mail, however, it was a mess. The lettering was brittle and cracked everywhere. I called J Crew, and though the person I talked to seemed a tad bubbleheaded, she agreed to send me a mailing label so I could return the shirt--I was worried they'd give me a hard time since it was a final sale item, but, as it should be, defective doesn't count when it comes to final sale.

Monday, October 6, 2008

I Heart Tsubo Maryjane Pumps

I wore these today.

I loved them so much that I ordered another pair in cream, which was the only other color available in my size--and they were on sale for $38.99. (And since I bought them on Amazon shipping was free and I threw in a couple of books.)

These awesome shoe bargains are making me happy. My left knee, however, not so much. My cousin's orthopedic surgeon husband thinks I tore something in my knee. It hurt last week after I twisted it (during the strenuous activity of getting up off the bathroom floor while giving Cheapy Junior a bath), but it felt fine all weekend. I figured it miraculously got all better.

But today the high heels (which really aren't as high as they look--there's a hidden platform) did not do my knee any favors. It's sore sore sore. What will I do, fellow shoppers, if I can't wear any of my heels? This could turn into a sad situation--all those shoes sitting alone in their boxes unable to fulfill their destiny on my feet. Sigh. I better start searching for some cute flat-ish boots to get me through this crisis.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Shopping in Portland: Johnny Sole

During my trip to Portland over the weekend, I was involved in conference activities all day Saturday (while Cheapy checked out the awesome city). Since we were leaving Monday morning, that gave us only Friday afternoon and Sunday for exploring and shopping. The first store Cheapy and I happened upon after hopping off the train on Friday was Johnny Sole. This is an independent retailer open since 1993, two floors, shoes on the bottom, clothing on the top. The proprietor, who has a great eye for footwear, waited on us, and she was fantastic. I didn't venture upstairs to peruse the clothing--it was shoe time. Check out these pix.

I got two pairs of shoes and Cheapy got one. I ended up wearing this pair of Jeffery Campbell t-straps I bought during about 16 hours of conferencing on Saturday and they were super comfortable. Here they are in the mustard combo which is what I have, as well as in a side view in a brown combo so you can see how cute the heels are.

The only place I could find these online is an indie shoe shop in Chicago called Lori's shoes (whose site I plan to explore further).

The t-straps were full price, but I also checked out the sale room.

There I found a pair of Nana mini-wedges for super cheap, even cheaper than they currently are on

I also tried on these Tsubo pumps. Johnny Sole had them in black, cream, and this great olive green color which I wanted, but was sold out in my size. I kept thinking about the shoes after I left the store, so when we got back to our hotel I did a little googling and found them on Amazon in brown on sale for $25.99, down from the original price of $134.99 (which is what they were selling for at Johnny Sole). I couldn't pass them up. Oh what a great day for shoes, fellow shoppers! (Alas, I have no idea how I'm going to fit these all in my shoe shelf. Which, I suppose, is not a bad problem to have.)