Monday, May 8, 2017

How Black is Your Sole? Shoes for the Gothic Foot

I'm baaaaack!  Sorry for the April absence, but I just was not in a blogging mood.  Maybe it was because I turned 55, and almost no one sent me a card; then I realized that it was probably because most of my family members who used to send them are gone now.  My son and his girlfriend and my nephew did come and spend time with us, but even that was rather blah, for some reason.  They told me they had ordered a gift but it hadn't arrived yet, which was okay, I don't have a problem with that.  However, as of today I still don't have it, and have received no word that it has ever arrived.  Hmmmm...

Anyway, enough of that dreariness!!  Get back, E.A. Poe, no depressing stories from YOU today!  Today's post is about a great e-mail I received from a goth friend, Stella, who has kindly given me permission to share it with you, on the subject of goth shoes:

"I have issues finding shoes that are flat heeled, practical and gothy. Add in the problem of trying to keep  my feet dry (it's raining here alot) and I'm pretty frustrated. 
Bear in mind that because I've only been dressing "dark" for the last 2 - 3years,  and I tend to shop mainstream and charity shops, I don't have much experience with the old stand by "Doc Martin's ", and "New Rocks ".
What are your thoughts on the subject?  Do certain brands have a reputation for being more or less comfortable (for the elder goth market ). I'm fed up with mainstream style and shoddiness, and I'm wanting to invest in some high quality,  comfortable boots that are timeless (in a goth way)....and I would love to hear from someone else.  Thanks."
And here is my response:
"I love shoes, especially goth shoes!  I have been lucky three times with buying shoes online, but after that... phffffttt!!  I really don't recommend buying online shoes unless your feet are exactly a standard size, since you can't actually try them on and find out if they fit.  The three pairs I was lucky with are all somewhat extreme in style.  Two are a bit large for my feet (I wear size 8.5 and they are size 9), but I am able to make the boots (Anarchic by T.U.K.) work by using thick socks.  I believe the 4-inch platform creepers are Demonia.  The heeled lace-up shoes were harder as my feet would slide in them, so I had to buy inserts to put inside them to keep my feet in place; it worked, but they were never totally comfortable even then.  I did buy an adorable new pair of T.U.K. shoes with kitten heels online that were supposedly my size, but I finally gave up trying to make them comfortable enough to wear and got rid of them.  No more online shoe buys for me!

I've never had a pair of Doc Martens or New Rocks, so I can't comment on those, except that the ones I've seen in ads were rather expensive.  However, I've gotten a couple of pairs from my favorite thrift store (charity shop) that are soooo comfortable I may be buried in one of them!  But both have rather high heels and thick soles, so I can't drive in them.  The shorter of the two pairs is Kenneth Cole's "Reaction" -- very comfortable, but probably very expensive when new.  The taller pair is a brand called Glaze; I don't know anything about them, but they are made in China, so probably not very expensive.

Honestly, the best shoes I've found that are, in your words, "flat heeled, practical and gothy" were from Kohl's, a very mainstream department store.  They are actually boots, but they totally fit your three requirements, they are extremely comfortable, AND they keep my feet dry in the rain.  I just had the soles replaced, and told my shoe repair guy that I will keep bringing them in for repairs until they fall apart in his hands! 

Another store that I've been lucky at is Payless Shoe Source; unfortunately, they've closed a LOT of stores lately, and their styles change frequently, so you can't depend on them always having the 'right' ones."
Okay, readers, what advice can you give us??  What gothy shoes can you recommend, especially if you are an Eldergoth, or on your way to being one?  Our feet are in desperate need of your wisdom...


  1. Belated birthday wishes! :D

    As to the shoes... I suggest finding plain black shoes that are flat heeled and practical, such as Mary Janes or ballet flats, and then gothing them up. Depending on your style of goth, you can add spikes, studs, lace, appliques, bats... whatever suits you.

    Sinister Soles have a large selection of gothy Demonia and TUK shoes and boots, including quite a few flat and low-heeled options. If you don't want to risk ordering online, you can get some ideas to replicate on plain shoes.

    New Rocks are my favorite boots. Otherwise, I mostly wear mainstream brands because I need wide width. I'm too old and cranky to wear uncomfortable shoes, no matter how amazing they look. ;)

    1. Belated thanks for both your wishes and your advice! :-) I've gothed up one pair of shoes and loved the results, so I'm definitely going to do more of that! I also got a wide pair of flats, which are great at the toes, but not so good in the heel, as mine is narrow, so I have to put heel pads in them to keep them from falling off! ::sigh::

      I have extremely flat feet, and have developed problems with the bones in my left foot, including a bunionette (sounds like a French salad!), which is why I tried the wide flats. My orthopedist also told me to 'stay away from high heels', but frankly I don't want to. My favorite boots both have high heels, although they are balanced somewhat by platform soles. So I am compromising...I don't wear heels two days in a row. I've also found an arch support insole that I can wear with my flats so that I don't end up with "old lady feet", something that Morticia Addams would NEVER have developed, so why ME??? And I agree with you, wearing uncomfortable shoes is just stupid, and I refuse to do that anymore.

  2. Hello lovely! Very late birthday wishes. Know what you mean about not feeling like blogging, I've been a bit 'meh' about it all recently.

    Interesting you mention TUK shoes / boots. I've yet to try on or wear a comfortable pair. I'm currently auctioning my TUK boots on ebay virtually unworn as they just ain't comfy.

    I am a veteran DM wearer though, and it's interesting to note how they've changed in the 30 years (good grief!) since I bought my first pair. Then the standard boots were great quality and lasted forever with a regular dollop of dubbing. Now the standard black boots are pretty crappy, prone to cracking over the toes and really rather uncomfortable. They are a nightmare to break in. I also ebayed my last pair.

    But their non standard boots are different. They've started doing some lined with fabric or fleece that are lighter weight but much more comfortable and with more supple leather. I recently invested in a very dark green pair which are like clouds on my feet and just amazing to walk in (which I do a lot of). I've worn them constantly for 3 months and there's hardly a mark on the soles. Always, always try DMs on to assess the fit to your foot. It was worth me paying that bit more for these boots as I suspect they will last for years and they are designed to improve visually with age (if that makes sense?). I also have their lovely lace patterned shoes (again built to last though quite heavy) and a pair of heeled Darcie boots with a rose pattern that I've had for years and are still immaculate and my ultimate goth boot. Again, these were pricey but worth every penny because the quality and fit is so good. I am lucky though, we have a wonderful gothic boot shop where I live right next to a specialist Doc Marten shop that often has my size in sale - I have tiny feet.

    New Rocks - I've tried and it's like wearing boulders on my feet...hello Ebay!

    1. Thank you! And thank you for the thoughts and ideas on shoes! I appreciate the validation. :-) I've heard many comments on Doc Martens at both ends of the scale, that they are still fabulous and that they USED to be fabulous but are now getting crappy. Such a shame when they had such a great reputation for so long! Oh well, everything seems to be made of lesser quality now, a by-product, perhaps, of our 'throw-away' culture.

      And I LOVE the visual of New Rocks shoes as "boulders on your feet", hehehehe!!

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