I have a pair of the sexiest, highest black patent high heels you ever did see. I can’t actually walk in them, but they’re great for… certain occasions. I remember a time when my wardrobe was full of shoes like that but I’m now of a certain age where I realise that yes, they’re nice to wear (very) occasionally, but actually it’s more important that my feet are comfortable. It doesn’t make me old, it just makes me sensible OK!
My best friend will attest to the fact that I’m a bit of a wuss when it comes to my feet and moan about the slightest twinge, so when Jones the Bootmaker asked me to come and look at their new Strive range of footwear, I did it for her. But mainly for me.
Strive is a range of sandals and flip-flops that have a built-in support in the arch area and, as I have really high arches, I was hoping that these would work perfectly for me. Because let’s face it, my lifestyle is such that I live in trainers, flip-flops and sandals these day, and that’s fine, but it would be nice to wear something stylish AND comfortable for a change.
The best way I can describe them, by comparing them to something slightly similar, is how a pair of Birkenstocks are shaped to fit the underside of your foot. However, one major difference with Strive is that instead of cork, the lining is leather – which goes some way to explain the slightly higher price point of circa £70.
Mike, the manager of the shop that I spoke to, was very knowledgeable about what Strive shoes can do for your feet and, even how to wear them. Yes, there is a suggested way to break these shoes in, which is wearing them for one hour on the first day, two hours on the second day and three hours on the third – they say that they will then be perfect for you to wear all day. This is because the curved support in the shoe for the arch of your foot just takes a little while to get used to.
I chose a black pair of flip-flops style sandals with gold studs on the top (main picture at the top) and it’s the type of sandal I would buy anyway, and you can find them HERE. A lot smarter than the pair of £3 plastic flip-flops from Tescos I usually wear, and I’m expecting these to last more than just one summer!
I’m a size 7 and Mike said that it was important that the back of my foot didn’t overhang at all, so that’s something to look out for when trying different styles on. I liked them all, so it was hard to choose one pair – they ranged from white, to pewter, to black, with a subtle detail on each shoe but, as I say, they’re the type of style I’d buy anyway.
It’s going to be interesting to see how they wear during the summer and obviously I can’t report on that just yet, especially as I look outside the window and it’s pouring down with rain, but first impressions are good. They’re comfortable, supportive, stylish and very well made so as much as it’s always good to have a pair of sexy high heels in your wardrobe, it’s just as important to find a shoe you can wear every day.
* As I mentioned, I was kindly gifted these sandals – all views my own