Are nude shoes really a bare necessity?
Style Clinic: In last week’s column, you talked about nude shoes. Are they really the work horses (to borrow some Lennon/Courtney lingo) they’re made out to be, or are they a bit naff? To me, they scream Kardashian but I feel alone in that sentiment.
Nora, by email
On the issue of nude shoes the world seems firmly divided. On the one hand, we have the fashion luvvies who say that nude shoes will work hard for their money, go with everything and elongate the leg (although it’s worth noting that your nude shoe might be my brown shoe, and my nude may be your ivory).
On the other, we have those who see no difference between the nude shoe and the Essex-girl white court, and insist that the former should not be seen outside of British nightclub culture.
So who is correct? Well, both and neither, really. A good nude shoe will elongate the leg, true – but it helps, of course, if you are a model to begin with (like this Marks & Spencer model, making the nude shoe look the business). I can’t recall the last time I saw a nude shoe demonstration on a woman above a size 10.
This elongation works by making your leg appear to go on all the way down to your toe; personally, I like to minimise the amount of flesh people can see on or attached to my body, and so I’d favour a chunky heel in a dark colour, as distraction from my stumps of legs.
My favourite nude shoe at the moment is Office’s Belle court in beige suede (€85). The low chunky heel means you’re far away from Kardashian territory, while the slightly rounded toe makes them tasteful rather than tacky.
Ultimately, it is a matter of taste; if you hate the nude shoe, forget what the fashion world tells you. In six months, we’ll be telling you something different anyway.
Where can I find understated earcuffs?
I’m hearing a lot of things about earcuffs lately. I’d like to try one but I don’t want to look like an emotional teenager who hates her parents. Please advise.
Elaine, by email
You’re not entirely wrong – earcuffs are big news at the moment, thanks in no small part to Repossi’s beautiful (and, frankly, ridiculously expensive) 18-carat rose gold earcuff, available at Net-a-Porter.comfor the bargain price of €3,800.
It’s possible that may be out of your price range, but it’s a good guide as to what we’re looking for – delicate, understated jewellery that won’t have anyone accusing you of being a wannabe emo teen.
Irish website folkster.comhas a play on the style in the form of a red feathered earcuff (€9.99). The stunning colour and soft texture mean it’s much more feminine than fierce, and with hair down will look like a feathered earring.
Hair up or swept to the side will make the most of it.
If you’re after something less, well, avian, Asos has this beautiful filigree stone earcuff (€7.79) that combines a vintage-style earring with a chained cuff. Even with the chain, it manages to stay on the right side of stylish and, unlike the Repossi number, won’t even nearly break the bank.