Shoeper Shoe Challenge #9: Snow Problem

WHAT: New Look over-the-knee tassel boots
WHEN: Saturday, February 27, 2010
WHERE: Visiting my parents
WITH: Black skinny jeans (River Island); green polo-neck sweater (gifted); black faux-fur jacket (Oasis, years ago); brooch (vintage, belonged to my grandmother.); black leather gloves (gifted)

This is the reason for the lack of Shoe Challenge posts this week. Yup, it snowed. AGAIN. It’s now officially the worst winter since records began, and as well as being utterly depressing, and forcing me to cancel lots of the plans I’d had for this week (We’re not snowed in, but I don’t like driving in the snow), it’s also making the Shoe Challenge a little more, er, challenging than usual, because these boots are the closest thing I have to “sensible” snow wear, so they’re basically never off my feet at the moment. They’ve definitely been the best value-for-money shoes I’ve bought in the past year! (There are some better photos of them here, if you particularly want to see them.)

Actually, even without the snow, the challenge is getting much harder. I think the most important thing I’ve learned from it so far is that while I have a LOT of summer  and evening shoes, I don’t have a whole lot of winter ones, and tend to stick to my faithful black boot collection when the weather is cold, wet and miserable. Which is basically all the time. Something to bear in mind the next time I decide to go shoe-shopping, I guess!

While I’m here, I had an emailed question from a reader last week which I thought I’d answer here, just in case anyone else desperately wanted to know the answer. Jasmine asked:

With most of your outfits it seems that you are wearing a long sleeve black shirt underneath, could you give me some info about that please? I love the look and would like to try it so if you could guide me as to maybe brand, material, etc. I would greatly appreciate it.

Ah, the shirts. For me, this is a purely practical thing in the winter. You see, I’m cold. (Literally, I mean, not emotionally.) All the time. And yes, I know, you’re thinking, “Well, d’uh, woman, it’s snowing there! Of COURSE you’re cold!” But I’m one of those people who seems to feel the cold more than most. There’s rarely a time of year when I feel comfortable enough to bare my arms (Weirdly, I can bare my legs and not feel too chilly, but if my arms are bare, I’ll be freezing in anything other than really hot weather.): I go to Florida every summer, and even there I carry a cardigan or something everywhere I go, to protect me from the air-con, and any rogue breezes that might whip up.

Most of the time, then, short-sleeves just aren’t an option for me. Unfortunately, most of the dresses I like seem to have short sleeves, so I’ve had to get used to layering. Cardigans are one way to do it (and I have a LOT of cardigans), but a lot of my dresses have puffy shoulders or some other detail that makes it hard to wear anything over them, so I have to wear something under them instead: enter the long-sleeved t-shirts. I have about a dozen of these, maybe more, and I have them in a selection of colours, but the black ones see the most use. I also have these from lots of different stores – I tend to hoard them, and will pick up new ones all the time. Funnily enough, though, the best ones I’ve found are also the cheapest: they’re from Primark, they cost about £3 per top, they come in a bunch of different colours, and they have a really high lycra content, so they don’t lose their shape or colour, no matter how often I wear and wash them. I also like H&M’s long-sleeved t-shirts, for similar reasons – in general, the stretchier the material, the better it will wear and the longer it will last, and these ones are also quite affordable.

Hope this answers the question!


  • Ah, must look in those shops – although I’ve seen the supermarkets do long-sleeved tee shirts occasionally too.

    I have the same problem (needing to wear long sleeves all the time), as I have ezcema that I want to cover up (not to mention keep out of the sun – UV rays don’t always have the effect the dermatologists hope for). A few years ago it was so difficult to find any long sleeved tee shirt at all that I ended up mail ordering from a web site specialising in modest Islamic clothing. The shirt supplied was very nice and light (unlike quite a few long-sleeved tees that are geared to winter) as they are intended as undergarments, but unfortunately the supplier’s stock and delivery processes were so poorly organised that I only used them once.

  • Snow shoes, somehow through google I stumbled onto this page and I think its great. But like you said, you don’t have many snow appropriate shoes. I’ve essentially never seen snow, and well, likely will next week; problem is, I have to be in professional attire, full suit, the works… but I have no idea what shoes are practical… and living in a warm weather climate, I am not sure I will be able to find them easily. I am like you, I get cold VERY easily, and I don’t want to freeze. So any advice you can provide would be great!

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