Every fall I face the same fashion dilemma: I want a beautiful pair of boots, but I want them to be affordable. And by affordable, I mean as cheap as possible.
I hate spending money on shoes. I know, I know—shoes complete the outfit. But all I can think about is how destroyed my shoes get from shuffling from Manhattan to the New Jersey suburbs every day, traipsing through dirty sidewalks and sometimes even dirtier snow slush.
By the end of the winter, any pair of boots I buy are completely destroyed. The first year I lived in NYC, I bought myself a nice, expensive pair of boots. I spent the season tiptoeing around puddles and shedding tears over unsightly scuffs (those luxurious boots were a third of my assistant’s pay check, after all!).
I learned my lesson, and I want those boots at the best price I can get. But I do have one more requirement: These affordable and stylish boots also have to be comfortable.
It’s a tough ask, and last year I couldn't find boots I liked until December. This year, however, I found the perfect pair in September—plenty of time for fall and winter. And since my pair are already on my feet, I’m going to share the secret with you.
Get yourself a pair of Toms.
To buy: $73; nordstrom.com
Yes, the same brand that makes those comfortable sneakers (and, bonus, donates a pair to someone in need for every purchase). Toms now makes so many different kinds of shoes, even boots. And they are super sleek. And, wait for it, only $73 at Nordstrom. Free shipping is involved, too.
I put them in my cart, and two days later, they were at my doorstep. One hour later, they were on my feet—and they’ve basically been there ever since.
The shoes come in a variety of colors, but I got the black ones—they go with everything. They hit just below the ankle, so they don’t rub and they look great with both pants and skirts. The small 1-inch block heel provides enough support and stability to walk for miles (I’d know: I walk at least 1.5 miles every day…and I’m 8.5 months pregnant), but still gives a little bit of a lift.
I know that by March the suede will look matted, the outside edge of the heel will be worn from the way I walk, the seams may be a bit frayed, and it’ll definitely be time to say goodbye to my beloved new Toms. But I won’t care a bit. I will have, conservatively, worn this pretty pair upwards of 125 times—just 58 cents per wear. Now that’s the kind of math I like.