Marvelous Mary-Janes (Part 1 of 2 of the Shoe Advice Bonanza)

I phoned my technical writing editor D yesterday at work to ask him a question about my content. One tangent led to another, and before we knew it, we were discussing the A&N shoe sale. D mentioned that his wife J had been looking for a basic mary-jane she could wear with pants, jeans, and skirts for the longest time but couldn't find anything to her liking. I showed him this picture of the Point Zero black mary-jane I found at last year's A&N shoe sale, which I always like pairing with jeans and denim skirts:

"See, that's perfect," D said. "That's exactly what she's looking for but she can't find it anywhere. If you can do a post on mary-janes that'd be great!"

Ooh goody! I love reader requests because you get the satisfaction of helping someone and the fun of shopping without spending your own money. The first place I thought of for shoes was I love Zappos because of its huge selection, user-friendly web design, and reputable customer service. Sadly, Zappos is American and its Canadian equivalent has a much smaller selection; nonetheless, it's a good starting point for browsing and getting an idea of what's out there. My favourite feature on the site is the customer reviews: customers who've bought the shoes rate them on things like style, comfort, arch support, and whether the fit feels true to size. If you have to order online, reading the reviews is the next best thing to trying on the shoes themselves.

These are the specs and assumptions I was working with when I began my search:

  • D said the shoes should be a comfortable wear-with-anything basic that can be dressed up or down. Each shoe I picked out had to, in my mind, look good paired with a knee-length skirt, jeans, or trousers.

  • J wears a size 9 or 10 shoe, so I figured I'd steer clear of really chunky styles and go for something more streamlined.

  • Because I'm envisioning the shoe worn with skirts or dresses that show a bit of leg, I think a strap that goes across the middle of the foot rather than the ankle would be more flattering.

Taking all that into consideration, here are my top picks. Enjoy!

Ecco Bouillon mary-jane, $124

Fitzwell Elaine mary-jane, $69

Kenneth Cole Reaction Keep Open mary-jane, $83

Sofft Phoebe mary-jane, $91

No comments

Back to Top