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DL: Because... Shoes | Happy 4th of July

Because... Shoes | Ses Rêveries

Everyone, meet Clancy. There's just something about over-the-knee boots that I just can't quite put my finger on... except of course, I can: it's the 'tramp' factor.

They make fantastic statement pieces too, sure; they give life to even the dullest of outfits. I rocked the pair above in the shop wearing my black Spidey hoodie and dull grey jeans: I went from zero to hero in the blink of an eye. Suddenly, I was Halle Berry's Catwoman post-mutation. I was slinking around the room to the shop assistant's amusement like a liddle kitty cat; they were purr-fect.

But in order for you to truly understand the gravity of the situation, you have to hear the full story. Before you judge me, please note that this was months of repressed retail withdrawal symptoms... Now you can judge me accordingly. I apologize in advance for the lengthy read as well. It's both uninformative and unnecessary so feel free to back out now.

On with the show...

I'd been at the mall for all of three hours yesterday evening, in search of a shirt - no, the shirt - to go with the culottes I bought ages ago. I wanted a boxy lightweight top in mustard, or at the very least in white with some kind of embossed print or non-tacky laser-cut embroiderie. Not too much to ask, right? But no, none of the shops had what I was looking for in the sales section. And sadly, I don't believe in buying anything full-priced while the sales are on. I think it's disrespectful to the stores to turn down such a gift.

As a last resort, because their sales are always more disappointing than not for me, I traipsed into Topshop and "raided" the store in search of my Ark of the Covenant. As usual, nothing really loosened the firm clasp I had on my wallet; not the way Zara does. Zara is a cruel, cruel mistress. She knows you; she knows what you want, when you want it, how you want it. She is painfully aware of her charms, but she makes no apologies for being your dream shop. She doesn't need you - which only makes you want her more. And the wait is always torture, but come sale season, you are never left dissatisfied - some majorly unintentional innuendos, actually, but I'm laughing now so I'm not deleting it.

Nothing matched the tops I had in mind, so I did what I always did when I found myself in Topshop: I headed over to the shoe section. Their shoe sales had yet to fail me. And sure enough, on one of the shelves closest to the checkout sat a glorious pair of black leather over-the-knee boots. The same boots I'd imagined for myself after seeing my favourite blogger (quite possibly everrock a fairly similar pair in suede on her 'Gram a few days ago. The same boots I'd gushed to my sister only six hours prior to my trip to the mall that I suddenly needed in my life. The same boots that were... the only ones of its kind on the shelf.

As a girl with rather large feet, this is never a good sign. Not only are we barely catered for to begin with (damn you, size 6ers), but Size 8 women are generally ruthless; they see nothing but red once the sale signs are up. You get in their way? It will be the last thing you do. So I give them one last look for posterity's sake and look for the sign with 'Size 7/8' sprawled on it; we're always shunned to the smallest section, like lepers, even though it's catering to two shoe sizes but, y'know... whatever.

It was as I turned my head that I noticed the '7/8' sign was perched right above my boots (yes, I was already referring to them as 'my boots' at that point). Not even neutrinos have moved as fast as I did when I clocked that purple sign. I lifted them up, checked the tag and got ready to curse every single woman with size 7 feet in the entire world, past, present and future (sorry, ladies, but it was that deep) - but alas, they were a perfect 8 (that's a European 42 and a US 10.5, I think).

I slipped into them - and they felt like liquid gold. My sore bank account was a distant memory as I pranced around like I was Amanda Lepore. Never had anything made me, even with my massive ego, associate myself with the word 'sexy' - ever! But these shoes were just that powerful! There was nothing specifically spectacular about them. It was just bits of leather and the chunky heel, which to be fair, is my favourite kind. But they were still as amazing as a pair of Louboutins to me at the point!

I wondered why they were still on the rack days after the sale had started. These boots had me looking like Naomi Campbell, long legs and all. It was very unlike Size 8ers to slack like this... and then it hit me: the price tag.

I slipped them off with the quickness. Of course. Of course it would be that. Of course I'd just walked around in a pair of shoes that could pay my rent for at least week. Shame on me. I was out of practice. I'd stayed away from the game too long. With just one faraway look, I used to be able to tell what price range(s) an item, a rack, an entire section was in. And my budget for the day was a measly £20 as well. I'd lost my edge. Fashion blogger, my arse. I should just shut down the entire blog. I was a disgrace, a disgrace to habitual shoppers everywhere.

I picked up the pair of heart-breakers and decided it couldn't hurt to see just how much my feet had cost for a hot minute... I did a double-take.

A triple-take.

It couldn't be. I picked up the other foot and checked again. 

Guys... I'm actually feeling emotional right now as I type. These shoes were on some other-worldly offer yo. See, the original price was £98 - I was totally right about my rent, btw. That was what I saw first. I was about to laugh. I mean, this wasn't Kurt Gieger or Steve Madden or Karen Millen. It was Topshop. What were the playing at?

And then I spotted the little purple sticker, the one with the reduced price on it. £20, it read. In big, black bold font. Twenty freaking smackaroos: an eighty percent discount; someone's idea of a sick joke or a labelling mistake I was going to blab my way into justifying at the till. Because there was no way this was real.

It was as I marvelled at the tag that the announcement that the shop was closing in fifteen minutes came on over the PA system.

I considered my options. The last pair, in my size, fit like a glove, the checkout was right there, no queue... it was all lined up by the gods!

Or was it?

I needed one thing. That was it. And that's my rule. I do not buy anything I haven't planned for. I do not, under any circumstance, make rushed decisions like this. My sister would berate me for all eternity as well - which is more migraine-inducing than you can ever imagine. I didn't need anyone tainting my purchases with reason (older sisters smhhh).

So I put them down, said my teary goodbyes and left with the other shoppers; empty-handed, down-trodden but proud of my restraint. I called my sister to show off that I was growing as young woman, making smart decisions. She should be proud to call me her sister. I mean, anyone should be proud if they got to call me their sister regardless (duh, look at me) but she should be extra proud because I, unlike most others, had a good head on my shoulders. I was strong. I did not bow to the whim of Topshop or any establishment. I was a rebel. An iconoclast in the making!

I recounted the tale above to her. I mentioned that I only needed a shirt, but I'd found the pair of boots I'd previously told her I wanted - nay, needed. She didn't even let me finish before she started with her annoying "Karina..." that gives off the same patronizing sentiment as a thousand parental figures shaking their heads at you. I told her to take a chill pill, I wasn't done. It was £98, I said. She kept quiet. I am, hands down, the stingiest person in our family; there was no way I was going to fork up that cash, she knew that. Then I mentioned it had been dropped to a glorious £20. And do you know what she said? "Tell me you bought the shoes."

This woman, the deciding factor behind my bloody leaving the shoes behind was asking me if I copped them! I was speechless. Dumb-founded. What had I done?

Because... Shoes | Ses Rêveries

But of course, I blamed her profusely... and then the thought occurred to me: the store closed not long before I left... Unless a size 8er had decided she would be the bastard in my ointment (or the fly or whatever) and pick them up before dashing out a few minutes after I did, they would still be there tomorrow. I begged for this hopefully nonexistent soul to have mercy upon my shoe closet. It had been looking so dull and uninspiring. These boots, why, they were just the things I needed to revitalize my entire wardrobe - my entire life!

I needed these bloody boots - oh, merciful God, please!

Who cared about that bloody shirt? I'm sure I had something that would suit the occasion just fine already! I did not however, have these boots. I stayed up until 1am, plotting and scheming. The store opened at 9. I lived not too far away. If I left by 8.30, I'd have gotten just the warm-up I needed to aid me in my sprint through the doors once they opened, down the escalators and all the way to the back before anyone could catch on.

Oh, but what if there were others like me?

This was a possibility. As much as I like to think I am a rare and special being in many respects (not in the way you're now thinking, tut-tut), there could be one or two people who'd felt as compelled to add these beauties to their collections as I had to mine. I could not take that risk. I'd leave at 8; plenty of time to scope out the competition and cover all exits. I went to bed easy.

With several alarms set between 5 and 7, I still didn't leave my bed much less have a shower until 8am (typical). Breakfast? Please, I'd eat when I got back home, wearing those boots - and nothing the fudge else. I was going to grow old and die in those boots, and then be buried in them.

Out the door by 8.30. There was already quite a number of people outside, being all unnecessarily jovial and whatnot as they took their kids to school. They had no idea the battle that was ahead of me, the battle that of course had nothing to do with them. But whatever.

I got there at 8.55; not too shabby. But of course, Topshop wasn't open yet. I headed up to the open-plan restaurant in front of its main doors to chill. There were two other girls sat there already. They could have been there for anything, but I inspected their feet, just in case; a 4 and a 6, at most. The shoes were safe for now... but what about the other entrance?

There was no time to check - the main doors were opening. I waited for the others to go in first before I did, just in case they got told off for being too early. Perhaps I could save face; it was bad enough I was here this early to begin with. No movement for a good minute or so. I threw caution to the wind and headed in first; they followed not long after. Tut-tut, so I was their scapegoat? As if any shop assistant could have stopped me, anyway. I was a woman on a mission.

I sashayed past The Topman Bae behind the till in the men's section, not paying him much mind. He was City Centre Bae #2 though; the guy at Carphone Warehouse who sold me my phone will forever be my Numero Uno. He was a marvellous cross between Johnny Depp and Ben Barnes. I was told to come find him if ever I had any problems with my phone; I still can't wait until I have a reason to. But that is all beside the point.

Two floors down - alas! The shoe section! And lo and behold, MY BOOTS!!! I grabbed them and headed back up to the main till as the one next to it was unmanned. Fair enough, I could spare that minute of delayed ownership. Suddenly I started to rethink. Were the shoes even all that? I tried them on again.

Ha, of course they were... But still though... It was as I slipped them off that I saw another glorious sign: '10% Student Discount - sale items included.' I think it's safe to say you already know what happened next...

And that, mes amis, is the tale of how I went from being a dignified human being to a glorified slave to capitalism literally overnight. And boy, do I feel fly! Does it matter that, now that I have them, the shoes no longer hold quite the same allure? Don't get me wrong, I still love them deeply - I'm still wearing them right now, in fact, and I haven't left the flat since I got home around 9am. But now that I own them...?

This always happens. Anyway, it's only fitting, really, that I now use this opportunity to give a shout-out to my dear, dear Americans. Your tweets are killing me with envy, but it's OK. The UK might not have anything of the patriotic sort coming up that I have bothered to make myself aware of, but the first of October is coming up slowly but surely. We'll have our turn.

I don't own anything with stars and stripes but still, from Clancy and I:

Happy 4th of July!

Because... Shoes | Ses Rêveries
Unnecessarily gassed but I don't curr... actually no, I do care. I'm majorly hoping no one made it to the end of this post.

Unless otherwise stated, the photos in this post belong to me and are thus my intellectual property. Please see the Disclaimer for the blog's image use policy.

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