May 10, 2011 at 11:22 am , by Gabrielle Porcaro
Gab, I’m going to Italy on my honeymoon and there will be a lot of walking. I just can’t roll up in a pair of mom/granny shoes or huge sneakers. Do stylish walking shoes exist? Any other kinds of shoes that won’t kill my feet? — Amanda
I went through the same dilemma when I traveled to Italy 4 years ago. I didn’t want pictures of me from my first trip to my family’s homeland sporting lame sneakers so I rocked Converse the whole trip. That’s me sporting them at St. Peter’s Basilica at the Vatican. I’m taking a rest from dazzling my friends with knowledge of Renaissance sculpture and getting in a fight with a nun (there was some confusion about the placement of a decimal point on a price… forgive me!).
It’s a tough one because you want to be supported and comfortable all day and that doesn’t always equal stylish. My trick is to bring a few different types of shoes and switch it up. Then your feet don’t get used to one shoe. It’s spring/summer time so shoes are light and easy to pack and you can certainly wear one pair on the plane to save space while packing. Here are some ideas:
Any low profile sneaker is a good option. I am currently obsessed with New Balance’s new Minimus sneakers which is their barefoot inspired line. They are all incredibly sleek and weigh a lot less than normal sneakers. My favorite is the fitness/walking shoe which are so light they inspire me to do ballet moves every time I wear them- true story. I also think PF-Flyers sneakers are very comfortable because they have a thick cushy sole. This gray canvas style is a good option that will go with everything.
As for non-sneakers, we are huge Toms fans at LHJ because of their Do Good aspect but they are also super comfy. Pick a fun print or a bold color like red and it will style-up a t-shirt and jeans. Any fun flat espadrille would work as well. I would also recommend Sperry’s Top-Sider boat shoes. They are cute, preppy and classic so no regrets years later when you look back at your photos.
If you want to take a pair of sandals, pick a pair with support or comfort features like Cole Haan or Naturalizers. Get a cute pair that can also work for a nice casual dinner. You can also embrace the Boho trend or return to your hippie routes and rock some Birkenstocks. Just no flip flops — flip flops are only for the beach! I know this is a rule that I myself break, but they aren’t going to support your feet and will probably give you blisters.
Wear the shoes a bit before traveling to break them in and check that they won’t hurt. Make sure you pack some Band-Aids and have them on you each day. You don’t want to spread your DNA all over the Louvre from bleeding blisters like one of my friends did while we were in Paris — not fun! One last suggestion, pack some Baby Powder. I mean it’s your honeymoon and you might be wearing these shoes sans socks. Stinky feet is definitely a mood spoiler!
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