26th September 2023

Lolita Shoes in the Workplace; A Shopping Decision

Today, the unthinkable happened, and I was forced to appear physically in the office of my place of work. I usually work remotely, and I enjoy the freedom of dress that this gives me, regularly wearing cute, dramatic and elegant lolita styles to sit at my kitchen table picking at code. However today I had to go in. I find it quite nervewracking to travel into the city nowadays because I feel as though there are so many things that could go wrong, leaving me stranded far from home. A way I like to get control over this is by - you guessed it - planning a cute outfit.

Unfortunately, my place of work has an incredibly casual dress code and overall culture. When I regularly visited, there were a lot of people who showed up wearing clothes that were as close to pyjamas as you could get without actually wearing pyjamas - there were actually a few charity events where people did wear pyjamas! So when I want to wear lolita fashion to work, I do tend to feel incredibly overdressed.

As well as this, getting to my office requires not just driving and catching the train, but a lot of walking. So I don't really like to wear heels for this at all. And today I realised once again how limiting my collection of shoes is right now for this particular situation.

When dressing for work I like to wear either more of a casual old school style with a cutsew, which is what I wore last time, or something more of a classic-everyday style, which is what I wore this time. Unfortunately I discovered that I had no flat shoes at all to work with a classic styled dress in black! This was a problem because I knew I was going to be doing all that walking, while also carrying a heavy bag all day.

I took a photo with my heels, but unfortunately while actually out I wore just a pair of Vans. It was way too much to try to tackle a day like this in heels, and I didn't want to push myself on a day where I was already quite uncomfortable with my situation.

Days like today can be really useful in highlighting weaknesses in my wardrobe as a daily wearer of lolita. I now know that what I need to look for next is a pair of comfortable yet somewhat elegant boots without much heel, which I can wear to get through days where I am going to be driving, travelling, and carrying a lot of weight on my back.

I asked around for some suggestions for shoes, and I got a lot of good suggestions from fellow lolitas who wear the fashion on a daily basis. Out of the suggestions that I got, I had two particular favourites.

The first of these favourites was the boots and oxford shoes from Memery shoes, which are kind of a reproduction style of shoe. They offer some really nice edwardian style work boots, which I felt would work really well with my outfit, as well as other more detailed outfits. These however had a couple of drawbacks. The first is the price, they were a lot pricier than my other favourite option, which isn't so great when I can't try them on. They were also quite a narrow shoe in the toe box, being an edwardian style, which may cause issues with my feet since I have quite wide toes. They offer a wide sizing, but I'm not certain this would be helpful. The person suggesting these shoes also noted that they are canvas lined, which was quite harsh against their feet and socks. Since I am quite prone to blisters, this was a little bit concerning. However I really liked the style of these, and while I don't think I'll choose these for this particular purchase, I would be interested to buy these in the future.

The second suggestion that I really liked was a pair of versatile lace up boots that are sold at Clarks. This seemed like a really good idea because there are a lot of Clarks stores that I can get to, which means that I will be able to try these on. The person suggesting these shoes mentioned that they wore these boots all the time, and that they were incredibly comfortable, so I feel quite confident that these could be a good choice for me. The only drawback to these shoes is that they're a bit plainer than the others, and won't be as good for fancier classic coordinates - however since I don't tend to wear fancier classic, or if I do I will probably just wear heels, this is not much of a drawback for me. So I think as long as they fit me these will be a good purchase. Likely next time I am out shopping, I will try some on in the store. I'm feeling hopeful about these!

Ideally since I am assisting to facilitate an in-person session sometime next month, I'd like to have a pair of boots that work for this purpose before then, so that I can dress wearing shoes that match my outfit, that I like, and that are comfortable for this session. But I'm not sure when I'll next be shopping, so it's hard to say. Hopefully it will be before then!