As a shopping editor, it’s imperative that I keep my stuff organized. The retail scene in Philly is always changing, and I need to stay abreast of what’s opening, closing, relocating, expanding, etc, etc. (Organization tip: I have a massive binder filled with business cards I collect from my scouting trips; each organized by retail category, with notes on why I liked—or did not like—each store.) But with all the changes, there are some spots that remain total gems. I think of these as The Stalwarts, the stores that stay steadfastly cool, but sometimes slip out from my radar. Stalwart #1: Head Start Shoes.
It’s always fun to see national press discover the homegrown gems we’ve loved all along. Sometimes they get it right (Allure recently called out Fishtown salon Parlour for their awesome cuts—maybe they checked out our Best of Philly list first?) and other times, they miss the mark (see: Vogue‘s nonsensical map of the city). Happily, Footwear Plus, a business-to-business fashion publication for the footwear industry, got it totally right. They awarded Queen Village boutique Bus Stop the prestigious ‘Excellence in Retail/Best Boutique in the Country’ award, a well-deserved accolade (think of it as the Olympics of the footwear industry). Congrats to owner Elena Brennan and the Bus Stop team! Now, Shoppists, I recommend you head over to Fabric Row and see for yourself why they won. (In a nutshell: a quirky-cool selection of shoes, and stellar accessories that you won’t find anywhere else.)
- Happy Valentine’s Day, Shoppists! Let’s kick things off today with this handy guide to faking a nose job. It’s called contouring, and it can work wonders. [Makeup.com]
- Kendall Jenner walked in Marc Jacobs’ runway show, with boobs on full display. Caution: N(ot really)SFW. [Cosmopolitan]
- How to get perfectly tousled bedhead, explained in GIFs. Thank you, Hair Gods. [The Cut]
Notice anything special in the photo above? That’s right: In the green dress and Delaware sweatshirt is College Jeopardy! contestant Sarah Stevens, and she’s not wearing shoes. For Jeopardy! Competing shoeless on a game show is more of a Survivor type of thing.
Never in footwear history has there been a shoe more controversial than the mule. It’s been maligned by many for the clomp-clomp sound it makes (which I don’t think is nearly as bad as the flip-flop slap) and adored by others. If spring 2014 runways are any indication—which, of course, they are—the backless shoe is staging a comeback, only this time with a higher vamp (that’s the top of the shoe, for those who don’t do fashion-speak) so it stays more firmly on the foot and makes less of a clack-clomp sound each time you step. And with crackled silver, crystal-bedecked and red lace versions out there now, there’s never been a better time to kick up your heels. (Literally.)
- Metallic oxfords! Mesh pumps! Slip-on sneaks! Raffia sandals! Gilded wedges! Spring 2014′s shoes are pure eye-candy heaven, and the best antidote to this dreary Tuesday morning. [Glamour]
- In today’s update on trends we thought were dead, Juicy Couture is
desperately trying to stay relevantbringing back the velour sweatsuit. Please God no. [Huffington Post]
- The latest collaboration everyone’s dying over? Target and Peter Pilotto. (Cue angels singing.) Behold! The look book! [Fashionista]
Newsflash: In case you haven’t been glued to your street-style blogs and fashion mags, Birkenstocks have made a comeback among the style set (even Vogue gave them the thumbs-up!). But before you pull out your totally beat-up, worn-out, stained and smelly suede two-strappers from college (c’mon, you know you had a pair), consider one of the ultra-luxe riffs on the sandal, like Marni’s wide-strapped leather version, complete with a slice of gold hardware at the footbed. They’re wonderfully solid—enough of piddly T-strap sandals hanging on by a thread!—and the thick leather bands keep them from making that annoying slap-slap-slap sound as you walk. Invest in them now, and then wear with a simple white slip-dress or a pair of jeans come summer. Don’t want to shell out for them? Buy a new, fresh pair of classic Birkenstocks, and you’ll look just as fashion-savvy.
- Happy Friday, Shoppists! Let’s kick things off with a slideshow of the fugliest, most painful-looking shoes ever, shall we? [The Cut]
- It’s going to be cold out there on the Superbowl field. The shirt that Nike developed for the players and people on the sidelines to wear is insane. Can we get some over here, please? I mean, it is Polar Vortex and all. [ESPN]
- This is pretty cool: a bracelet that will warn you when you’ve been in the sun for too long. [Huffington Post]
Winter weather (we’re looking at you, Hercules) has a way of wreaking havoc on public transportation, sucking the moisture from our skin, and—perhaps the worst of ‘em all—totally annihilating our leather boots. Hey, we get it: Road salt helps subdue icy conditions, and our cars (and non-twisted ankles) are thankful. Unfortunately, it also leaves nasty white marks all over our shoes. Free People to the rescue! Just follow their super-helpful picture tutorial to eliminate stains at from your favorite boots. All you need is some cold water and white wine vinegar. Combine the two, dip a towel into the mixture and wipe your boots gently until the marks fade. Let air-dry and ta-dah! Your leather boots have been restored to their pre-snow-ravaged glory. You’re welcome.
Though I’m a near-constant wearer of high heels, I’ve come to embrace the beauty of the flat. It makes walking around Philly so much easier (damn cobblestones), and it helps me walk slightly faster than my normal pace, which is admittedly slug-like. Thankfully, we’ve moved beyond the blahsville ballet flat, with style-centric versions like loafers and oxfords taking center stage. Here, some of the best loafers out there right now.