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Tuesday, March 25, 2014

To Mule or Not to Mule?

Image from Nordstrom

I remember my first pair of mules. Well, technically they were clogs, but the back was open so they can be considered mules. The year was 2002, I was in the 9th grade, and clogs were the shoe to have. I don't exactly remember how I knew that, seeing as my fashion sense was about the size of flea, but I really, really, really wanted a pair. So, there we were, my mom and I, in DSW where I saw them. They were a beautiful red brown leather with a 3 inch wooden heel, the first statement shoe I ever remember picking for myself. Every time I wore them I would click clack down the halls, so proud of my first fashionable footwear item, not caring that no matter how careful I walked down the stairs in that encased stairwell, it sounded like thunder.

Now, even though I was so excited to have those clogs, there was one problem I just couldn't get over. My feet, no matter how hard I tried, wouldn't keep slipping out. I felt like I was constantly clawing my toes to retain them inside the leather, and after a year or so of scrunching my toes just to look fashionable, the allure of my clogs faded. And like most shoes that were once the apple of my eye, I forgot about them and when my mom came collecting for the Salvation Army, in went my clogs.

Ever since my disappointing experience with mules/clogs, I never gained an interest in them. I even gave them a second chance in 2005, when my stepmom bought me a beautiful pair of bejeweled nude, suede mules to go with my lavender tulle evening dress, on our way to see the NSO (National Symphony Orchestra) for New Year's Eve. Sure, I wore them that night, but just like the clogs of 2002, they sat in my closet untouched, and it wasn't long before, they too, joined the other unwanted shoes at the Salvation Army.

That was the last of my feet in mules.

I never thought about them again, even though I saw them from time to time whilst shoe shopping, until now. Just when I thought I was over this shoe style, prominent designers decided to bring it back in 2014. When I saw an editorial spread of these shoes, flashbacks of 9th grade came reeling in my mind. Nah, I don't think these shoes are for me.

But as the months wore on, and winter wouldn't go away, my visions of slipping and sliding turned into visions of pedicured heels in this updated version of the classic mule. Now, I'm not completely soled (pun definitely intended) on the idea of mules, but they're sitting a little prettier in my imagination these days. Maybe after another month or so of seeing my fashion icons strutting around in them, and when spring sales start to bloom, you'll see a post of me modeling them in the future.

Alexandre Birman
Derek Lam
Alexandre Birman
Alberto Moretti
All images above from
Image from Zara
What are your thoughts on mules? Was there ever a style that you rejected but are now into?

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