I don’t usually talk/write about this kind of matter in such a public, online forum, but Gary thought I should throw my concerns to the wolves and see what bones get thrown back. So on I go.
In April of this year (did you have a nice April? I sure did) I asked for advice on facebook about shoes. Sandals, to be exact. I walk a lot around town, and wanted a new pair that would be comfortable and go with dresses and jeans both. When I need shoes, I usually turn to the bullseye or TJ Maxx. I’ve had luck finding cute (though sometimes uncomfortable at first) cheap shoes that can withstand my walking habits.
Well, ask about shoes on facebook, and you’ll get barraged with loads of comments and advice nuggets. The brands recommended were ones that I usually didn’t even think about, mainly because I usually can’t afford them. Well, that’s not true. I just don’t usually want to spend 150.00 on a pair of shoes. Not when I can buy a cute, on-trend pair at Target or Marshalls for less than 20.00. Nuh-uh. No way. But, the experts (and my friends) said that I was tearing my feet up with these shoes, and that the pricier ones last longer so you don’t spend as much money replacing them as you do in the long run buying cheap shoes.
Let me say that I’ve had a few pairs of Target shoes that have lasted for years. I also have a cute pair of weird-brand Mary Jane heels that I found at a Catholic thrift store in Alaska with the price tags still on that have lasted forever, too. And they’re generally comfortable, which is saying a lot for a pair of four and a half inch heels. I also have a ridiculously, sinfully comfortable pair of Rocket Dog clogs that I’ve had for a while that feel like walking on soft golden retriever puppies when I step into them. They were 30.00, and I wore them ALL last winter and they still look new.
I took some advice, back in April with the grass was really green and the dogwoods and daffodils were blooming. I had some extra money. I took a chance. I bought a pair of 120.00 Danskos (the Sigrid) and I wore them in the Spring and Summer. Yes, they were very comfortable (they went to DC and Fredericksburg with me, and to the Smokies and the beach). But look at them now:
Let me add that a pair of these ballet flats, that I bought at the same time and have worn just as much, still look brand new (just a little stretched, but ballet flats always do that). I spent less than 15.00 on them.
I guess the point of this lame story, is that I’ll continue buying the cheap shoes. Everything is made in China now anyway (even the pricey “better” brands), so really, “quality” means nothing now (only speed and efficiency and high profit margins). I tried to send a few words to Dansko (which I never, ever do) but their online contact form is down.
That is all. Thanks for being a patient, silent, listening voice that won’t tell me to buy another pair of 120.00 shoes.*
*Note to my friends to told me to spend a bit more on shoes: I still love you all, of course. Some of you almost to distraction. Just know that next time you might suggest Merrells (though I do have a pair of their hiking boots that I’ve had for eight years ~ I bought them on clearance) or Danskos or Keens or Borns, that I’m going to smile and steer myself to the bright, happy aisles of Target. They know and love me and my feet there, plus I can get a gallon of milk and a new paperback before I leave.
UPDATE: Dansko Rep Tanya (Tonya?) just called. Dankso is sad about my experience and is letting me exchange the shoes for any pair I would like (clog, sandal, etc). That, my friends, is customer service. I applaud that company! 🙂