The arrival of Hurricane Sandy, and the blast of downright icy air that has followed has left most of us, style enthused, scrambling to find our winter clothes! Record breaking snowfall and lows across the east coast caused a fury of folks to pull out the bug guns. That’s right, prepared or not, WINTER IS HERE! During my time living in the mountains of the Blue Ridge, I haven’t seen air this cold, this early. Being from sunny Florida, it’s also really amusing to hear FL friends Facebook status’ and tweets crying out for the God’s to take this “freezing” cold elsewhere! While the temps may vary over the coming weeks, the fact is, winter is here to stay, and we had better style ourselves accordingly!
Shoes are one of my favorite things to buy and winter shoes are by far the best. They call for more coverage and with that comes an array of exciting materials like Italian leather’s, rubber, suede, knits, and even denim. Just like with winter clothes, adding layers is the biggest trend of the season. Not only layers of different materials, but also of stitching techniques, colors, and even styles. The goal really, is to find the shoe with the most exciting detail, while staying within the realm of style. Here are a few of my absolute favorites for the season..
Because of my undying love for dark denim, quality Leather, and “slim” style, my first choice for the seasonal shoe is Reid, by HELM handmade. Its unique lines, exquisite attention to detail and top-notch materials is one that cannot be duplicated. This boot features denim panels made from U.S. Cone Mills raw denim from Raleigh Denim in Raleigh, NC and Chromexcel leather from Horween Tannery in Chicago. A Leather sole with infused non-slip rubber, six brass eyelet shaft, roundcap toe, white HELM signature midsole, and Blake Rapid Stitch construction round out this classic boot, which comes in Carolina Brown in sizes 7-12, including half sizes. (killer description from the HELM shop)! Though these boots are on the steepest side of the pricing realm, at $399, they are a purchase that will pay off in full. With a little preventative maintenance, your pair of leather HELM boots can easily last 15 to 20 years… or longer.
Be sure to visit the HELM shop and make your purchase, or at least salivate for a while!
Here is a great example of the many choices you have in winter shoes. Though I could not find the source for this photo, and also the reason my search for a flannel/leather boot continues, this shows the realm from one end to the other. A sneaker that with the right sock, would do just fine in the coldest conditions, and the warmest of boots all the way down the line.
The 3 shoes shown above are great examples of a completely versatile shoe for all-weather. The skinny lace up leather is one that looks slim enough to wear almost anywhere but is still warm enough to wear in the coldest conditions. The last 2 shown are what I would describe as the perfect office winter shoes. They will both go with almost any color, dressed up for the office or, as shown, dressed down for the streets. They are not too heavy, and not too light. While staying on trend with fabrics and buckle, these two are choices that I would have on hand all the time. Bring them along in the suitcase with your heaviest boots, you never know when the winter weather will surprise you, the sun will shine through the snow clouds, and a lighter outfit and shoe will be the perfect choice.
If I have anything at all to sum this post up, it is that while shoes and shirt are required in most places, the choices you make fulfilling that requirement is totally up to you!
I would also like to say that my heart is with all those affected by Hurricane Sandy on the coast, and also in the mountains.