At the end of last winter I had to give my favourite black ballet flats a ceremonial farewell.
They had served me well on many an occasion through autumn and winter. My go-to flats; my no-think, just wear flats … they had never let me down.
Until that fateful day they accidentally got worn to a very soggy Saturday at soccer.
Within hours, I knew there was no way they could be resuscitated. They were a soggy, stretched, muddy version of their former selves.
I didn’t think much about these ballets over summer. It’s too hot around here to encase your feet in such a way.
No, it wasn’t until the weather turned slightly cooler and I dragged out my jeans for a casual “mum on the run” day that I realised I’d not yet replaced their gaping hole in my wardrobe.
As luck would have it, this was about the same time I was asked by The Athlete’s Foot to trial a pair of Rockport Seaworthy II casual flats.
I didn’t know I needed these particular shoes in my life but I’ll tell you they quickly earned their place in my casual weekend shoe-robe.
They are the ideal flats for women on the move.
And move is something I very much have no choice but to do on weekends.
The computer is switched off and it’s all about running from one family activity to another.
There is definitely no time for shoes that do not ooze comfort. I may carry bandaids with me at all times but they are firmly reserved for my heel-wearing nights, not daytime chores. Oh, and with the required comfort comes my need for style too. Always.
10am: Had meant to get an earlier start but huge day the day before meant that the body preferred slumber over action. Action had to win out in the end as Mr Almost 18 was home from uni and needing some thriftshop styling advice for an upcoming party. We live pretty close to a whole strip of op shops, so made up time that way. Plus, walking between each was no problem due to the supreme comfort factor of the Seaworthy flats on my feet. Loved that they were comfortable from the first step and no different after a kilometre or so. Scored blue safari suit and brown paisley tie at our final shop. Winning.
1pm: Late soccer game for Mr 7′s U8 Stingers. It’s already been raining. Grrr. Thoughts of the ruined ballet flats of old went through my head as we walked through soggy grass and mud to reach the sideline. Noticed no water seeping through to feet (always a bonus) and as for resultant layer of mud/grass on the 100% leather shoes? More on that later.
3pm: A wipe down (of all of us) and it was time to test-drive a new car. I’d already taken this one for a spin but Mr SY was a bit put out that he hadn’t had a go yet. I did remind him that it would be MY car and he wouldn’t have to like it but apparently boys have a thing about cars and engines. I kept admiring the cup and lipgloss holders – and how the loafers made the perfect driving shoe – while he rabbited on about such things as “responsive take-off” and “solid road handling”. Must Google those phrases.
I’ve talked up Rockport shoes here on Styling You before. The key to comfort in all Rockport shoes is the use of the same technology that is used in Adidas runners.
The fancy names for this technology are Adiprene and Adiprene+. Together they work to absorb shock in the heel and provide energy rebound in the forefoot.
The Seaworthy flats (also available in cream and black) include a gum rubber outsole for increased traction while walking and are made from premium grade machine washable leather. Yes, you read correctly. Machine Washable Leather.
And throw in the machine is just what I did on Saturday night. We’ve got a 15 minute express cycle in our front loader, so I popped them on that and the day’s soggy soccer activities were washed away. By lunch time the next day they were dry and ready to wear again. No shrinkage in the leather or any sign that they’d been put through the ringer, literally.
1. This is a wear-with-pants style of shoe in autumn-winter. A slim or skinny leg works best. Please don’t try wide-legged 3/4 pants with them. You know my thoughts on this style of pant. You will definitely tip over in to “Nana” shoe territory should you attempt such a pairing.
2. If you’ve got the pins for it and jumping on a yacht (half your luck) to sail away somewhere exotic, then short shorts will work too. I say short shorts as you need that leg length to carry off a shoe like this without it looking like it’s “stumping” your leg.
3. When choosing clothes to complement, think preppy ’80s and ’90s when you think loafers and you can’t go wrong. For me it means, skinny jeans, over-sized tee and/or jumper and a scarf. A collared shirt worn loose or tucked in would also work here. Feel free to sling a knit around your shoulders. I’d be disappointed if you didn’t.
Rockport Seaworthy flats at The Athlete’s Foot | NYDJ jeans | Witchery tee layered over white Country Road seamless tank | Sportscraft scarf | Maui Jim sunglasses | Uberkate necklace
Thanks to The Athlete’s Foot, I’ve got a $100 gift voucher to give away that could help you get your feet into a pair of Rockport Seaworthy flats (they also come in red and cream). The Athlete’s Foot is all about finding your “fit” in shoes and it has long been expert in fitting you out with sporting shoes. These are examples of the increasing range of lifestyle shoes they now stock in store and online. Head to the home page and add your postcode to the Store Locator function, to find a store near you.
To enter, answer this question in the comments below:
How do YOU know your shoes are stylish and comfortable?
Entries open on May 21 at 6am and close on June 4 at 5pm. Australian entries only, sorry. The winner will be judged on originality and creativity. They will be emailed and their name will be published here. Entrants must include an email address when the filling in the commenting system below to be eligible to enter. Full terms and conditions, here.