HSM #8: A Fashion Crisis is Afoot.

This deadline is starting to unnerve me. I’m feeling it creep down my neck like an errant spider. The odd thing is that there isn’t really that much to do…this isn’t a horribly complicated pattern and there is enough time to get it done – especially since I’m skipping French class today for the extra three hours of sewing time I’ll gain.

This morning’s e-mail contained instructions for Saturday’s event – 6 pages’ worth!! Directions, maps, schedules, instructions. Whens, wheres, hows and whos. Yesterday it occurred to me that by going as a SITU-Seattle member in Edwardian costume, my role becomes one of “local color.” I’ll be a bit part player on a well-manicured stage. There will be photographers and, since this is an annual fundraiser for the Gardens, the press will be there, too.

That’s all well and good, and I’m happy to help Dunn Gardens with their fundraiser. But I think I”m feeling more pressure than usual to “get it right” this time around.

I’ve been going through a mental list of what I need to wear and to bring. Late Monday night I realized I have a bit of a shoe crisis. I don’t have really correct Edwardian shoes. I can’t afford to run out and buy anything, so I need to work with what I already have.

This shoe thing is using up brain cells I need to finish the dress, so I’d appreciate some help. Here are the contenders – which do you favor for the job? I could probable sneak a second pair in my big picnic basket and change discreetly, if needed. The light is bad again today and I can’t get this first pair to show any detail, so please excuse the crummy images. I’m showing a lot of them, in case that helps you see the details.

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A pair of vintage-ish lace-up, wing-tip oxfords. They are black and aren’t comfortable for a long day on my feet, but I can always spread a blanket and “strike a pose” on the lawn whilst picnicking, chatting, reading or hand sewing for an upcoming HSM challenge.

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My pair of Wolkys, also black, which are completely modern but are great for long days.

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A pair of cheapo white flats I bought for “Regency” wear until I can afford better.

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And, come to think of it, I also have a pair of Regency style Nankeen boots from American Duchess.

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Whatever I end up choosing, they’ll be mostly hidden under a long skirt. The toes will peep out when I walk and part of the shoes will probably show when I sit. I’m hesitant to go with flats, though, because the dress will be hemmed for wear with heels. And it’s primarily that, along with style issues, that keeps bringing me back to the black oxfords. Should I just give it up and go with them? Aargh!

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8 thoughts on “HSM #8: A Fashion Crisis is Afoot.

  1. I like the first choice – lace ups w/ a bit of a heel. I wore a similar pair for a 1920s thing. While they did hurt my feet, my complete ensemble looked nice. I’ve also decided to get Dr. Scholl’s inserts for all my historical footwear. I’m all about authenticity, but I also need to be on my feet for 12 hrs plus at my events. 🙂 #historicalfootwearchallenges

    • It’s been a couple of years since I wore them for a “do” that required tons of walking and standing outdoors on cement…it was a complete disaster for my poor feet. Since it was so long ago, I wondered how they felt “now” so I put them on immediately after posting my query and, to my utter surprise, my feet and back are OK. I’ve done a combination of standing, sitting and whatnot for the past hours and have no complaints. Even thought they look kinda plastic in the photos, they are pebble-grained leather and already have wonderfully padded insoles. I’ll trying them for the next 2 days and see how the experiment goes. If my feet are miserable, I am too and I don’t want that look at a public event like this.

  2. Wear your Wolky’s. Really, if it’s a long day, don’t care about period perfectness, but about your feet. I’ve got Wolky’s too, and once I made the mistake of wearing cheap ballerinas instead on a long day full of walking and standing straight. It was a torture, really. Please learn from my mistake and don’t wear shoes you know aren’t fit to wear on a long day. (And with the sitting, just take them off and stuff them under your skirts, or you drape your skirts carefully over, so they don’t show.)

    • Gasp! I could never get away with cheap ballerinas if I had to be on my feet most of the time. Forget about the feet – my back would be in agony for days. My experimental wearing of the heels today has gone well and I’ll see how they fare over the next 2 days. But I if I do decide to go with the heels, the Wolky’s will be wrapped up and hidden in the bottom of the big old picnic basket. I can walk forever in those things – they’re about the only shoes that will take me through a full day of city walking with no complaints from my feet or my back.

  3. I like the nankeen boots, but if they’ll make your skirt drag, that’s no good. Any chance you could run a tuck along the hem to bring it up just enough for this event, and take it back down to wear with heels later?

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