While getting my hair done a while back, I was flipping through a magazine and came across an article: '10 Things Every Woman Should Have' by Oscar de la Renta. One of the items on this list was A Confident Walk. The quote that accompanied this was "You have to walk like you have three men walking behind you." Some of my friends were offended and/or upset at this assertion, stating that the sentiment was sexist, kinda creepy, and just plain wrong. While I can see where they were coming from, when I read this quote, I immediately knew what de la Renta meant by it. There is something about a woman who inherently knows how to walk in heels. She exudes a certain something. A power. A confidence. She has an air about her that not only men, but women as well, can quickly identify and most certainly notice. Quite simply, she casts a spell.
Coco Chanel once said, "A woman with good shoes is never ugly." I disagree. Marilyn Monroe also had a love affair with the heel and at one point said, "Give a girl the right shoes and she can conquer the world." but that's only half right. The other half of the equation is a woman's ability to REALLY walk in them! A woman who stomps around or wobbles like a newborn calf in heels is not powerful or sexy - no matter how fabulous the shoe. Can every woman live in heels? No. Can every woman pull off a stiletto? Absolutely not! Is there anything wrong with that? Again, I would say no. You do whatever it is that you CAN do.
"People walk differently in high heels. Your body sways to a different kind of tempo."
So, what do you do if you have simply never given the whole heel thing a proper try? Well, I'm glad you asked! Years ago, I was in Z Gallerie, arguably the happiest place on earth (for me). For many, it's Disneyland, for me it's Z Gallerie. Just thinking about it makes me happy! They always have so many gorgeous, glamorous things and a truly fabulous book selection to boot! Their selection consists mainly of novelty or coffee table books. I LOVE going to someone's home and finding books stacked or strategically placed, you get such great insight as to who they really are. Wow - I have REALLY digressed....
So, long story long...I found a super fun book at Z Gallerie many years ago entitled How to Walk in High Heels: The Girl's Guide to Everything. It pretty much covers it all - from how to get ready in 5 minutes to how to deal with a bad hair day, hangover, or locking yourself out of your house to how to catch a mouse, hang wallpaper, or feng shui your home to the MOST IMPORTANT thing (and also most relevant to this conversation) - how to walk in high heels! Bet you didn't see that one coming.
This little treasure covers every aspect of learning to walk in high heels from starting at the grocery store using the cart for balance and leverage to the type of heel that is right for you to how to walk on varying surfaces (ugh, cobblestones are "the HORROR of all HORRORS"!) and how to navigate stairs. I do not agree with every point the author makes - for example, I would disagree that investing in a pair of Manolo Blahniks is necessary or even possible for most women, but by and large there is some really great information here to ultimately get you to the point of strutting in your stilettos - it truly is an art!
Something else to keep in mind - while I can spend all night in a pair of 5-inch stilettos, I know my limitations. There are simply some things that most women will NEVER be able to do in heels. Running down the street à la Carrie Bradshaw is one of them. I have made peace with the fact that I am one of these people that will never be able to pull that off. And you probably should as well. If there is only ONE piece of advice that you take away from this post, let it be this: most people will never be able to run in heels without falling down or breaking something (and doesn't that really defeat the whole point of a fabulous shoe?). So take comfort in knowing that if you've got a great strut, one where your hips sway gracefully and confidently from side to side, a walk that you indisputably own, one that makes you feel powerful and beautiful, taking a little bit of extra time to get where you're going is totally worth it - and the added time gives those around you more of an opportunity to appreciate your ability to navigate in a great pair of heels. Everyone's a winner!
Ladies, OWN your walk! Learn how to do it right and make sure you've got the right shoe. Like Dita Von Teese has said, "Heels and red lipstick will put the fear of god into people." But carrying your shoes home (and potentially stepping on something and contracting some weird foot disease) will not.
So for all that is good and holy, do NOT be this girl. You're better than that.
If you still need some more help, consult Google. There are TONS of YouTube videos that will teach you how to walk in heels and I've also seen classes on the subject. You've got options to help get you there!
Happy Strutting, Kittens!