I have always had trouble with my feet. They are an odd size and
they hurt very easily. I've had bouts of plantar fasciitis that have
put me on crutches and so have generally tried to stay away from
things like high heels - they are not worth the damage and pain for
days or weeks afterward. Finding shoes that are comfortable, look
nice and that don't require weeks of pain while breaking them in is a
My dilemma when doing shows is always what to wear -- I'm most comfy
in jeans and sneakers with a t-shirt, which is how I work in my shop.
But as someone else captured so wonderfully: "people don't want to
buy their style from someone who has none." (I can't remember who on
the list said it, but I love it!)
As a result, I've come up with some wonderfully "funky" clothes that
reflect my own taste and that have a sense of fun to them. Good
colors and such, which reflects my use of color in my work, as well.
Hopefully a bit of an "artsy" feel to them. Styles that let me wear
a piece or two of my work so I can use them as a conversation piece.
But shoes remained a bugaboo! Until, that is, I found 2 special
resources. Easy Spirit (you remember those ads with the women's
basketball team playing a game wearing pumps?) makes some really
wonderful shoes that look nice and dressy -- but with flexible
padded soles that really do "feel like sneakers." I can wear them
without 2 weeks of painful "breaking in" beforehand!
And, Columbia sportswear (the people who bring you wonderful winter
coats) has a line of pull-on shoes, kind of like clogs but with
backs, that work wonders if you're on your feet all day. They look
nice (not dressy, but great with pants) and are non-skid and well
padded, with good support. I've ended up wearing them all the time
in the studio, which has concrete floors. I can keep working longer
without my feet complaining! (If you remember from one of our
earlier discussions, I like to do a lot of my work standing and
arrange my studio to promote walking around a lot.)
Finally, I've invested in a couple of thick carpet remnants that are
stitched around the borders. I think I may have paid about $10
each, and they're 2' x 3'. They are sample pieces from discontinued
styles that the store was eager to just get rid of. I keep them
behind my table in my booth and have them to stand on when things are
slow and I'm hanging out back there. Even on concrete/asphalt
floors, they provide some much-needed padding. You can also get a
special rubber floor mat with holes in it the size of dimes, which is
great for standing on for long periods of time. But I think the
carpets work just fine for me at this point.
Hope this helps some of you!
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