I had these as a possible Shoe Of The Day way back when I first saw them. Then completely forgot about them until I had to start looking for work shoes in the sale.
And what a bargain they have turned out to be! The burgundy ones (pictured) are down to £15 from £58, while the black ones are down to £25.
I love the retro styling of them and the block heel means that they shouldn't hurt too much by the end of the day. Very important when you need to concentrate on your work rather than how much your feet hurt. The square toe adds a twist to a shoe that would otherwise be fairly ordinary with a rounded toe. Don't be swayed by 'trends' on toe shapes. Trends are too fickle to be relied upon for work.
Dear reader, it is a sad day indeed when I can no longer face walking into Topshop. But I am afraid to say, with a heavy heart, that that day has come.
Let's go back some 15 years to when I was a gawky, slightly pudgy teenager who wouldn't know what fashion was if it came up and mocked her relentlessly (which I'm pretty sure it did). It wasn't until I started browsing through the delights Topshop had on offer that I thought properly about my clothes. True, I did embrace the grungy Angela Chase look for most of my teen years but it was that or looking like a Spice Girls backing dancer, resplendent in electric blue spandex and Lycra and I couldn't do that to myself or inflict the horror on the rest of the world.
So remember, this was around 15 years ago. The hot way to wear your tops was as a body. Denim was light and velvet was in along with plaid and florals. Also bear in mind I was like a fat Lisa Loeb and you get the picture.
I know fashion constantly recycles itself but even so, it was a shock to wander in to Topshop recently and see clothes that I am fairly sure I bought all those years ago. Who'd have thought it? Topshop making me confront the twilight years of my twenties and shining a spotlight on the impending new realm of 30-something.
It's not just that though. Frankly, I'm not enough of a navel gazer to allow my frivolous shopping habit to be dictated by the ravages of time. It's the quality and the prices which have made me decide that, unless they do something really bloody spectacular, Topshop isn't really worth my time, effort or money any more.
A fairly inoffensive velvet skater dress, right? Indeed it is. Except I had one exactly like it. From Topshop. It cost me the princely sum of £20. Now even taking into account the bizarre economic shenanigans like inflation and all that jazz, the same dress today will apparently cost you £38. And be poorer quality.
When I saw it on an in-store mannequin, I was actually intrigued. I liked it. It seemed new and different but wearable. Then I felt the fabric. Apparently it's made from Cupro, which is effectively a posh name for viscose. It feels cheap. But it isn't. £70 for this dress, if you please.
That's just two examples, there are many more. I won't abandon Topshop completely but it's safe to say it's not the essential place it once was. Not that Philip Green will lose any sleep over that!