I’m in a bit of a pickle. I purchased these shoes the other day from Marks and Spencer, but am now unsure as to whether to keep or return them. I’m like them, but don’t know whether they’ll be too quirky to be a versatile addition to my shoe collection. What do you think?
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I probably shouldn’t be billing this post as a “To the Rescue”, because I really think this is a personal taste/style thing, and that only you can really know how much use you’ll get out of a certain item. I can tell you that, for me, these probably wouldn’t get a lot of use, because they wouldn’t work well with my personal style, but without knowing what kind of look you tend to go for, and what’s in your closet, it’s hard to know how well they’d work for you.
In this case, I think the best I can do (other than asking for the opinions of my lovely readers, of course) is to tell you how I decide whether to buy or not to buy a pair of shoes. Actually, my Shoe Challenge has really changed the way I shop for shoes. These days, I’m much more likely to deliberate over the purchase, and to ask myself how often I’ll realistically get to wear the shoes in question. For this reason, many pairs of beautiful shoes that I’d normally have purchased in the blink of an eye have been left on the shelf, because I just know I wouldn’t ever get round to wearing them.
These days I tend to ask myself two questions before making a purchase:
1. Does it make my heart flutter?
You all know what I mean by this: every so often you’ll walk into a store (or click onto a website), see a particular item and just think “YES. THAT. MUST. HAVE.” It’s the shoe that’s perfect in every way: as soon as you see it, you know you love it, and as you’re walking to the register to pay for it, you’re already thinking “I could wear these with my…” or “These will be perfect for that…” These shoes are always worth buying (assuming they’re within your budget), even if you don’t instantly know when and how you’ll wear them, purely because if you don’t buy them, you’ll regret it. And you’ll regret it even more when you go back the next week and discover they’re sold out in your size. Then you’ll find yourself paying three times full retail for them on eBay, because you lay awake thinking about those shoes and berating yourself for not just buying them when you had the chance.
(I’m speaking totally hypothetically, here, by the way. I mean, it’s not like that has actually happened to me. Ahem.)
In other words: BUY THE SHOES.
2. Will I wear them all the time?
At least once a year, I buy a pair of totally plain, gold leather ballet flats, and often a pair of totally plain black ones, too. Gold ballet flats don’t make my heart flutter. Neither do black ones. They don’t rock my world. I buy a pair every year (or sometimes more often), though, because I wear those shoes until they, quite literally, fall apart. They’re not fun, but damn, they’re useful, so when I see them, I buy them (You’d think it would be easy to find the perfect pair of gold ballet flats, but you would be wrong…) because I know that even if I don’t need them rightthatverysecond, I will need them soon.
This is the criteria by which I buy shoes (and most other things, now I come to think of it). To answer Emily’s question, it doesn’t sound like the shoes in question fall into either of these categories, so my instinct would be to say “return”, but as I said, only YOU can know how much use you’ll get out of them.
What does everyone else think? Should Emily keep or return the shoes?