They are grey
ankle boots made from some kind of cheap leather. Or maybe not even
leather. Possibly pleather. Or plastic. They also have ties on the side
made from some type of pretend suede. Suedette, I think. Brandishing
these magnificent objects that, frankly, my dog would be embarrassed to
wear (or even chew), I marched up to the counter of a popular young
retail chain, opened my wallet and gaily haemorrhaged $129.
I will not name the shop where this occurred because it’s not the shop’s fault that my shoes are so heinous. It is the fault of fashion. Because fashion? Fashion loudly declared to me that ankle boots are IT. That grey is THE colour. Therefore, I concluded the combination of ankle boots AND grey would be a style orgasm. Except they’re not. They’re fugly.
Fashion is in a perverse mood this season. Have you noticed? It’s laughing at us from behind its hand. The key trends in magazines and clothing stores are a supreme shopping list of Things That Will Make You Look Fat And Foolish. Ankle boots that visually chop your leg off (unflattering), long t-shirts that cling to your bottom (unflattering), leggings (unflattering and inappropriate unless you are attending a gym or an 80s fancy dress party) and elongated jumpers worn as dresses (unflattering and also just silly). It’s not unheard of, in winter ’07, to wear all these items at once. For advanced fashionistas, it is positively encouraged.
A while back, right here, I observed that men are often better at judging what looks good on a woman than the woman herself. Men are not blinded by trends or labels or how directional Beyonce looked wearing leggings under a jumper dress on a red carpet in New York. Men just call it as they see it (except when what they see is a fat bottom belonging to a woman they love. They will never tell the truth to this woman, also known as ‘my wife’ or ‘my girlfriend’).
Now why the hell didn’t I put my own wisdom on a post-it note and staple it to my credit card? No. That would have been sensible. Instead, like the fashion goldfish I am, I chose to forget everything I logically know about fashion including my own age. Season after season. Hence the boots. And didn’t they elicit a torrent of compliments to fall on my head like rain! “Those boots look like you’re about to ride a horse,” boomed one male colleague. “Are they footy boots?” enquired another nervously. Neither man intended to be unkind, they were just flummoxed by my strange boots, which, incidentally, I was wearing with a dress.
It was my husband, though, who sealed my boots’ fate. When I told him about the two comments I’d had from other men, he cut to the chase. “Look, face it, they’re really ugly.” Except the adjective he used was somewhat more expressive than ‘really’.