Suicidal Shoes – Frocking Friday the Thirteenth, Shoeper Shoe Challenge #14 of 105


All good things must come to an end.

There comes a point in anyone’s lifetime where one’s favourite item of clothing or footwear dies on one.

This week I have lost two pairs of shoes. Two black patent leather shoes.

This is a bit of a disaster because the next BPL (Black Patent Leather) Shoe Day is on 15 April 2011.

Dead Shoes x 2

On the surface all would appear to be well. It is only when you turn them over that you will notice the cause of death:


Sydney Humidity eats my soul(s)

Slow steady heat induced sole disintegration.

Sydney weather encourages all my shoes to commit hari kari. I have about 10 pairs of boots and shoes that need to have the soles stuck back on.

I have it on good authority that Selleys Glue will reignite the relationship between footwear and sole. I fully intend to purchase the aforesaid Selleys Glue and shall report on the reconciliation process in due course.

Sadly, the division between my favourite sensible work shoes, my Fiorduna patent leather pumps, cannot be so easily salvaged with Sellys Glue.

Sometimes I do wonder though whether I should save or bury shoes.

The first pair of shoes at the top (the Schuh shoes) were my second pair of stilettos. I bought them from Schuh in Paisley 20+ years ago. They cost me 18 quid.  The Fiorduna pumps I bought from a rather expensive Italian shoe store in Sydney, just up from the Chanel shop.  They cost me about $150 on sale in or around August 2000.  I have to say that the Schuh shoes were a better investment. Both pairs of shoes have sentimental value.

After some initial thoughts of resuscitating the casualities using glue and so on I have decided to give both pairs of shoes a decent burial and  buy myself a new pair of black patent leather heels. The question is, which shoes shoud I buy that will be immediately comfortable and live to earn their purchase price?

If I had a tax refund cheque I would probably bite the bullet and buy a pair of these (Christian Louboutin Pigalles would pretty much match with anything).

CHRISTIAN LOUBOUTIN Pigalle 120 patent pumps via Net-a-Porter

At the moment, however, I am unsure of it whether or not Louboutins are Sydney humidity proof. It would break my heart (and be pointless) to spend $700 or thereabouts on a pair of shoes and not get at least 10 years wear out of them.  I have no difficulty buying expensive things provided that they earn their keep.

Generally we’ve noticed in this house that investing a wee bit more in a well known brand pays dividends in the long run.

For example, my husband has had a lifelong obsession with Levi 501 jeans. He has to buy these in or from the USA. Apparently this is due to the particular type of cotton you get over there.  If you get American made Levi jeans he tells me that you will get about 4 years out of them.  The lifecycle of my husband’s Levi jeans is as set out below:

– 18 months to break them in

– 24 months of loving them

– 6 months of realising that no other pair of jeans will ever look quite this good on your ever again

–  thereafter imminent death usually when one is trying to run for a train.

A pair of Levi 501 jeans will cost between $80 and $120 (Australian) to buy via eBay online. If you amortise the cost of these over 4 years the cost per annum is $30 per year.  This is the standard that I apply to most purchases – the upper limit for most purchases is $30 to $40 (Australian) per year.

I get really irritated when clothes do not even manage to last past the first wearing before displaying suicidal tendencies.

A couple of weeks ago I was quite pleased to pick up a brand new with tags silk chiffon dress from one of my favourite local thrift stores. It looked lovely on the way to work, was comfy and floaty and breezy in the warm Sydney autumn sunshine. A little bit too breezy as it turned out because the zip had decided to separate on me from waist to rib.

Luckily I was wearing a full length slip at the time so the display of flesh shown above was not apparent to my workmates.

I’ll be going back to eBay buying at this rate.

Suicidal Black Chiffon Dress: Love Me Me

Stiletto Sandals: Dahto Shoes Sydney, Australia (bridal and other shoes made to order)

The Minx wears: Rock Your Baby Tee & her big brothers  grey marl knickers

Dahto Black Leather Stiletto Sandals

What was your best clothing/footwear investment purchase?

17 thoughts on “Suicidal Shoes – Frocking Friday the Thirteenth, Shoeper Shoe Challenge #14 of 105

  1. Losing a good pair of shoes is heartbreaking. I feel your pain, from humidity central Brisbane, mould capital of the world. Well maybe further north is worse, but that doesn’t even bear thinking about.
    Best clothing purchase? Tuxedo jacket from a boutique in Paris 2 years ago. Was horrifyingly expensive, but is great with everything from dresses to jeans and a white T-shirt.
    Christian Louboutin “Simple” pumps bought in Paris last year still to stand the test of time. $$ per wear so far? Purchase price…..time will tell. Although the very chic salesman told me that they were perfect for everyday wear…….

      • As I hardly ever wear heels anymore, I opted for the very sensible 7cm Simple pumps. The entry-level Louboutins if you will. I lusted over the gorgeous platform heels, and outrageous creations, but decided to go with something in which I could actually walk. Have only worn them once so far (clearly I must get out more), but they were pretty comfortable. The leather is very nice quality, and of course now the red sole is scuffed, but I don’t really care about that. I know some people are obsessed with the red sole and have them re-soled in red before they wear them to protect the original red, but to this I say pffftttttt!!!! They are shoes. Gorgeous shoes, but meant to be worn, and there will be some wear and tear. Frankly, I prefer a high-end item, whether it be a shoe or a handbag, which shows signs of wear. They’re not museum pieces after all. I still have a pair of Bally shoes after 20 odd years, and they’re a little battle scarred, but still perfectly good. End of rant. Sorry for rabbiting on….

  2. A sad day indeed. I subscribe to the fantasy that you should only need to buy something once. Or at least once every 10 years. It works easily with houses, fridges, TVs, cars but not grundies or shoes or in fact any item of clothing except a hat. I hardly ever wear hats. Jeans rarely wear out because they shrink in the cupboard before they reach a natural demise.

    Selleys glue…..I hate to burts your bubble twice but saying “Selleys glue” is like saying “I’ll buy some shoes”. There are many many varieties for different purposes. The closest thing I know in their range for reglueing soles is Kwik Grip. It works fine for at least a week.

    Regarding better brands giving more years with which to amortise your purchase, I tend to agree, except for years ago when I bought an excellent brand of shoes in Sydney, made of kangaroo hide. They lasted under a year.

    • So what you are really encouraging me to do is to buy new shoes? Normally that is my role as Official Twitter Shoe Purchase Enabler (self appointed, seconded by Ms Nomes Messenger).

      How is it possible to wear out a hat unless you sweat through it?

  3. I hate when much loved shoes die. It’s a bit like losing a trusted old friend. Have you ever tried, the custom made shoe people? Think they are Sydney based. I think they’d be great for investment shoes. Though not in time for April 15, alas.

    • Have you ordered shoes from shoesofprey Ali? I’ve been watching their site for a while (and have followed them on Twitter for ages). What I have not been able to find is someone who has actually gone through the design and ordering process. I’d rather like to invite that person to do a guest blog for me < shameless

  4. One of my greatest purchases ever was a dark denim jacket, made from that soft silky denim. I had it for about 6 years. It looked divine with every dress, every pair of pants, literally everything I owned. It was tied to my waist or my handbag or crushed under someone’s butt at dozens of all-night raves and clubs, yet somehow hung back on my body like it’d been lovingly dry cleaned, so I could make it to work with some dignity the next morning, regardless of having not made it home in between (this was years before I worked with you, mind 😉

    The next best are a pair of RMK light brown slouch boots. You would’ve seen these. They have been reheeled once, I think. I can’t even remember when I bought them, but it would be close on 4 years. They are stunning, have heels, and I can run in them. And they are Not Black. Hands down my favourite shoes. $99 on sale. RMK are just divine. I’d highly recommend them for any kind of shoe.

    • You always dressed beautifully when you worked with us. I always looked forward to seeing what you would be wearing.

      RMK do last quite well for the money – I only have one pair of RMKs (aaargh) white strappy sandals but the glue still holds firm after 11 consecutive Sydney summers.

  5. I’m so sorry for your shoes, really… for you, of course! Well, I have many things from the “past” and I love them; so, I resist to give them… last week I saw that because one T-shirt was exposed to the sun light (coming through the curtains…) it got some stains. I’m thinking of how to “save” it, because I like it very much… if it’s not nature (like it happened to your shoes), I’m pretty sure we take very well care of our things and they can last for many years… but against humidity and sun, what can we do?
    I missed your pics this week for the Shoeper Shoe Challenge!
    Have a great day!

    • Hi Denise – thank you for missing me. For the last 5 days I have been Otherwise Continuously Engaged preparing for a presentation that my boss and I delivered this morning. Normal Shoe Challenge Service will resume (I hope) tomorrow.

  6. Oh, I knew it had to be something like that! Hope everything is OK! As for me, the usual as well, busy with the last exam – I can’t beliiieeeeve it, the word “last” sounds so sweet now! A-ha, by the way, I don’t want to sound egocentric, cause I don’t think I am, but since Shoeperwoman said “shoes and outfits” to the challenge, I learned how to take pics myself! So I place the camera wherever I can, and just walk in front, and then… “flash!” Wahetever comes, comes… and people are saying the result is great! Thanks for your nice words!

  7. Ah, those Pigalles! So gorgeous. So expensive. But I’m thinking they would last for a long, long time, so possibly worth it – I like to break things down to a cost-per-wear basis, and I think Loubs are well enough made to go the distance. The red sole will wear off pretty quickly, but if it bothers you (it’s never bothered me – I’m only interested in the uppers!) you can get them re-painted, or have red rubber ones put on instead.

    I hate it when good shoes die. I get very attached to inanimate objects, though – when I was a kid, my mum used to find old toilet rolls and toothpaste tubes in my bedroom. It seemed wrong to me that these things had shared our lives and would now be thrown away. I was an … intense… child!

    Also, I would kill to have legs like yours. Not literally, obvious, but still.

  8. Practical shoe repair suggestion:

    We have to do a lot of repairs quickly, whether it be dance rubber coming off or a shoe separating from the sole. We use Barge, minimal set up time and great hold. Ultimately we will need to have the rubber replaced or the shoe resoled, but as a solution it does tend to work for us, both quickly and “sort of” long lasting.

    Also, you know we live in the US, so I am more than happy to purchase said Levi 501s for your hubby and either hand deliver them or ship them over.


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