I haven’t always been addicted to shoes. In fact, when I was growing up, buying shoes was a chore. I had a pair of tennis shoes, a pair of sandals, and somewhere in my closet was a pair of dress shoes. I also had a pair of steel toe boots that I wore all the time. I didn’t care about fashion until I was 17, and took a chance on a pair of wedges. I had no idea that those wedges would change my life, and start the best addiction a woman can have – an addiction to shoes!
I bought my first pair of heels from a discount store. I didn’t want to invest in something that I wasn’t sure I’d like. I wobbled around the store while the associate held my arm so I wouldn’t fall over. I’d never walked in heels before, let alone 4 inch heels. They were pink with a flower on the vamp, and I thought they were pretty, so I bought them and took them home.
That was eight years ago. I still have that pair of pretty pink heels. They sit proudly with my other pink heels and wedges. Over the years, my collection has grown from one pair of wedges and heels each, to nearly 150 pairs of shoes and boots. They take over my two bedroom apartment. I refuse to pack any away because I love them all and I never know when I’ll need a certain pair. Recently, while re-organizing my shoes, a question came to mind – how will I know when I have an actual shoe addiction? I started thinking, and came up with this:
Signs of a shoe addiction:
- You can’t visit any store without checking the shoe section, even if you were just there yesterday.
- You browse online shoe sites daily to check for sales and clearance updates.
- Shoe store and shoe department associates know you by name.
- Your shoe collection is organized by color and designer.
- You know what every shoe designer looks like and could identify them in a photo line up.
- You have shoes you haven’t worn yet but you are still hunting for deals on the hottest pairs.
- You have a pair for every occasion you can possibly think of, but still buy more.
- You plan your outfits around the shoes you want to wear.
- You are constantly thinking about shoes.
- You leave the house wearing two different shoes because you have many different pairs that look the same.
- You name your first born child after your favorite shoe designer.
- You find a pair you love and you buy it in every color available.
- Basic black comes in 14 shades.
- You have to store your shoes in the oven, so your oven rack becomes a shoe rack.
- For holidays and birthdays, all you ask for are shoes you are crushing on.
- You wear a different pair of shoes every day for one year, and still haven’t worn every pair you own.
- You make excuses for why you bought another pair – you don’t have that shade of red, or you don’t have that heel height in that
Having a shoe addiction does have downfalls. It can be expensive. I’ve noticed that my addiction is so strong that if I am going to a store to buy a gift for someone and I happen to spot an awesome pair of shoes, I don’t leave the store without those shoes. I happily bring the shoes home, model them for my husband, and then put them among their place in my collection.
Another downfall is space. When you are insanely proud of your collection, the last thing you want to do is store it away in totes and boxes where no one can see it. You want to be able to showcase the entire collection and show it off whenever someone, anyone, comes over – the mailman, the pizza delivery person, even the political solicitors.
The good thing about a shoe addiction is that you have something physical to show for your money. You are always known for having the coolest shoes, and people compliment your collection. It’s a great feeling to put so much into your collection and have someone say, “wow! I really like those shoes. Where did you get them?”
Another good thing is that wearing your favorite pair of shoes can put you in a better mood. Just looking down at your feet during a bad day can put a smile on your face. You know that even though the day is long, you get to go home with those awesome shoes. Buying a pair of new shoes does the same to boost your mood. Many of us go shopping to ease a bad mood. When you come upon a pair of shoes that you know were made just for you, all bad things are forgotten and your day is that much brighter.
It’s safe to say that I am addicted to shoes. They bring me a happiness and air of calmness that few other things do. I definitely encourage you to keep up with your collection and to enjoy it. You’ve put a lot of hard work into obtaining those shoes, and you should be proud. I know I am.
An exclusive by Andrea Gunderson, first published in the Jan-Mar 2012 edition of Shoeholics magazine. All rights reserved