Footwear has grown increasingly sophisticated in recent years, with the application of technology both in materials and in design. Many shoes are specialized to particular activities, and choosing...
Choosing footwear to complement any outfit
Footwear has grown increasingly sophisticated in recent years, with the application of technology both in materials and in design. Many shoes are specialized to particular activities, and choosing such a shoe can help your training and form, as well as prevent injury.
But before we go on to specialized footwear let’s talk about the different sorts of everyday shoes a person should have. First of all, it’s good to have some casual sports shoes. Buy shoes that are well designed – ill-fitting shoes can cause serious problems with the bones and tendons of the feet, and cause long-lasting problems.
Let the shoe fit the situation…
Good sports shoes make for excellent wear in a host of casual situations. If this is what you’re buying them for, try to go in for neutral colors like grays, browns or blacks, that will go with any outfit. King and FBT have an excellent line in sports shoes. You might sometimes need something even more casual than sports shoes, which is where a nice pair of flip-flops comes in – perfect for a day at the beach.
You’ll certainly need a pair of formal shoes for occasions where casual or sports wear would be terribly out of place. Dress shoes, as they’re called, should be stylish, but comfortable. Never let anyone sell you a shoe, no matter how good looking, that doesn’t feel comfortable. Your feet won’t like it.
For men, formal shoes are generally bought in blacks or browns, but women have a whole range of colors available to them, as well as a variety of styles and heel heights.
You might also want to have a pair of sturdy boots as part of your wardrobe, especially if you like hiking or camping out. Such shoes need to be strong and well made, with excellent support for the ankles. And you’ll need good traction as well, and a well-supported arch.
Then there’s cold-weather gear. It goes without saying that you need traction here, as well as good insulation and water-resistance. When you buy boots for cold-weather wear, you need to make sure that you’ll be able to wear them with a pair of thick socks without them feeling too tight. I generally advise more than a single pair of socks, since the layer of trapped air provides additional insulation.
Shoes for athletics are easier to choose, because they’re so specialized. Just make sure that the shoes you’re buying have been designed for the activity that you have in mind.
Technology and Design
I mentioned at the beginning of the article how shoes are becoming increasingly more sophisticated. Any shoe you buy must properly support the bones, muscles and tendons of the foot. The materials your shoes are made up of are also very important. Choose shoes with soft soles that are both quieter and far more comfortable as well.
Choose a good leather for the uppers, because leather ‘breathes’ well, and is both flexible and supportive. Above all, make sure that your shoes fit well – beware of buying shoes that are a little to small or a little too large for you – both choices can be disastrous. Beware of heels – it is best (especially for women) not to go in for heels that are too high. This can cause problems with the feet. It’s best to not choose anything higher than a medium heel.
Finally, look carefully at the construction of your shoes – do they have double stitching, for long and reliable wear? Are the seals sealed? Are there reinforcing rivets at stress points?
Any or all of these is the sign of a well-designed shoe, one that is certainly worth buying.