Shoes truly make a statement about who you are. Change your shoes and your projected image changes and, possibly, your self view changes. Let's look at the possibilities.
- Strappy high heel slides raise your stereotypical feminine image. A sway of the hips compensates for the added height and unstable foundation. Care is taken not to trip or step on non level surfaces (at risk of breaking an ankle) leading to a perceived sense of frailty. Stooping to pick up something is more difficult so others are called upon for assistance. Added height provides pound trimming length and graceful lines.
- Classic Birkenstock sandals create that "of the earth" image. The perfectly molded foot bed and lower than flat heel seem to firmly root you to the earth. Movement is slow and thoughtful. The longer you wear these the slower you get because the straps stretch, so keeping them on your feet while moving quickly becomes difficult giving you plenty of time to contemplate the protection of the earth or yourself. Expect to look as if you have gained a few pounds while wearing these. Honestly, I think you do gain weight.
- Tennis shoes are for the all action woman. Tied on for greater stability, the tennis shoe gives the wearer the freedom to move, without worry. The newer tennie shoes add a little height so you present a lean, vigorous and healthy image. Unfortunately, tennie (tennis) shoes don't work well for all outfits, though the tennis shoe manufacturers are working to create dressy styles that seem as if they could cross some borders, but don't be fooled.
- The flip-flop (even the sequin studded varieties) project a casual image with that rubber popping sound that says, "I am so cool. I just came from the pool." Variety is the hallmark here with high, low, sequin, fabric thong, rubber thong, and the classic shower shoe. You are too cool to break a sweat, but you usually have a nice tan on nice legs.
- The hiker (boot or walking shoe) is like the tennis shoe in that you have that tied on freedom of movement, but you also have the freedom to move off of the pavement. Women wearing these shoes are generally making the statement that they are a more active earth person who can handle most tasks unassisted, making it the consummate shoe for the feminist. Mud, water, and dew laden grass are not a problem, though looking and feeling great in a dress could be.
- The mid height pump is the all business, all class shoe. For summer, lets throw in the open toe varieties (as long as they aren't too high or too strappy). Pump people are keen on tradition, have a business like attitude, and are immune to the swayings of the fad driven fashion industry. Expect to find tailored type clothing and a keen sense of order above the shoes.
- The ballet shoe seeks to do too much and sometimes succeeds at little. A cross between a pump and a tennis shoe, the low to the ground, yet more classic look is a favorite of those who overdo. Style is sacrificed for comfort and freedom of movement, yet the attempt at a more polished look hints at someone who likes order and could be self sufficient, but likes to have a man around.
- The high wedge, another cross selection, is high enough to bestow the length of line of the high heel sandal with more substantial foundation and straps that scream power. This person wants it all - sexy femininity, long lines, style, and action. Expect business from this person who is willing to forgo comfort for style while maintaining a demanding pace.
- Doc Martens make that I am too angry to be a part of society statement. Rebellion is only a heartbeat away.
- The compromise is the shoe that attempts to be stylish without sacrificing comfort or stability. It usually fails on all accounts, but gives the wearer a sense of stylish conformance, a little height (but not pound reducing height), and enough of a base as not to be dangerous. For the most part, people who wear this shoe have just taken off one of the other shoes on the list.
Shoes matter. Women have been shoving their feet in shoes for centuries to make a statement or prove who they are. Think geishas or Cinderella in glass slippers. Think "barefoot and pregnant." And, though men have it easier their shoes speak volumes too.
What shoe are you today?