Paying More For Less

We often hear about “paying less for more.” Sounds like a good deal, right? But sometimes the “more” that you get isn’t really what you want at all. Often what you get on sale isn’t exactly what you’d buy if you paid full price. Sometimes we compromise to get a good deal.

Lately, I’ve been on the hunt for the perfect tan shoes. I’ve wasted some money on shipping prices sending back shoes that were slightly too dark, too pale, too tight, etc. I’m just looking for a pair of basic tan ballet flats. It shouldn’t be so difficult! But I want a versatile pair that goes with both khaki and camel, and also beige-based prints.

Now that my wardrobe, including shoes, is a lot smaller, I feel less guilty spending more to get the perfect pair of shoes that will go with many different things. In addition to color, fit is a big issue for me. I’m diabetic and my toes have been going numb on my left foot. My toes are very square and get squished in regular shoes, cutting off my circulation.

I’ve been scoping out a few sites for “bespoke” options – yes, hand-made custom fitted shoes!! The closest cobbler I could find locally (in the San Fernando Valley) charges $3,000 USD for the first pair and $1,500 after that (he makes shoes for Madonna). Um, that’s way too expensive!  My friend pointed out that I could fly to Thailand or Italy and have the shoes made there for less (including airfare)!

I found some mail-order options that are more reasonable. Siam Leather Goods is in Pennsylvania and is reasonably priced. Eliza B  is in Connecticut – you can get custom color but not sure about custom fit.

I did order a couple of custom-made belts from Eliza B – here’s a pic.  Navy polka dot and rainbow-sherbet color stripes:

I finally ordered my tan shoes through Shoes of Prey. They’re in Australia and you can use Adobe Flash to design the shoes. They guarantee good fit. Sounds good! The cost is $180 USD but it’s worth it for a pair of comfortable shoes that goes with many outfits. I’ll post a photo when they arrive – cross your fingers – my hunt may be over!

UPDATE:  Here’s a photo – they are beautiful!  The color matches every outfit I needed it to match.  The customer service is also wonderful.  They sent me this professional photo below when it had been shipped.  It arrived nicely wrapped with a shoe bag.  Outstanding customer service – I did have a couple minor fit problems, and they offered to remake the shoes for a perfect fit.  A very good experience!

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