I thought I would do an entry about my shoes and stockings since I have been getting so many compliments about them!
It took a while to decide
I wasn’t sure at first, before I had really looked around the online shops, what I would use for my stockings. I thought I might just have to use some regular long socks, or attempt to make my own.
As far as the shoes, I have known since I started planning to sew 18th century garments which ones I would get.
I still get pretty nervous ordering online. I like to see and feel a product to get a better idea of what I am needing. When it’s something that is sized, I am definitely nervous. It can be hard finding the right fit even when I am trying something on!
I wasn’t sure how they would fit, but they work well. I have muscular calves that are just big enough to annoy me when I’m shopping for tall boots. The stockings are a little tight around my calves and only go up to just-under-knee for me (I’m just under 6 feet tall). They stay up and look good, though, so I’m very pleased.
I’ve already washed them and there was no shrinkage or anything like that, so I hope they last me for a while.
They’re very comfortable, and add a nice pop of contrast under my petticoat with my black shoes. For the price, I’m happy, and would definitely order another pair.
The shoes I bought are from Fugawee, and they are the Martha style in smooth black.
I wanted to stick to dark leather, since I will be wandering around outside and am nervous about damaging anything cloth or light-colored. At the same time, I wanted something that would look fancy, and with the height and shape of the heel, the Martha shoes continued to be my favorite as I kept checking the website out over time.
I contacted them to ask about the sizing, and they replied quickly, explaining to just use the modern shoe sizing I normally would. They told me the C width was the widest.
I tried on some of my own modern shoes (my size can vary, depending on the shoe type or even brand), and decided which size I would order. I also ordered the Vine and Leaf buckles in white bronze.
Once we ordered Wednesday night, the auto-reply came through quickly, stating the order was received. I’m not sure which day the package was shipped (I forgot to check the shipping label), but I received it quickly on the following Wednesday. It actually took me by surprise, and I was thrilled to have them that soon.
The shoes were still in their box and then placed in the shipping box. The buckles, in a plastic bag, were carefully placed with the shoes.
Also included were instructions about returns in case the shoes did not fit. There were also instructions for putting on the buckles, as well as velcro (also included), in case you wanted to wear the shoes with a tie or ribbon instead. I ended up using Jas. Townsend’s video showing how to put buckles on shoes since I had already seen that before I’d ordered and was familiar with it.
My feet were a little cramped in the toe area, but that’s normal. The rest of the shoe fit well, although I have to work my foot in the shoe carefully past the heel. I had a silly moment, and when I thought I saw the tongue getting caught in the shoe with my foot, I pulled on it — gently, I thought — and I accidentally ripped part of the tongue from the base where it is connected. No problem, the latchets cover it and I will be careful with it.
I wore the shoes for a couple of days to help stretch them out. By the time of the event, they felt just fine. I still have a slight toe squeeze issue, but it’s not as bad as when I first put them on (again, this is just me… sizing shoes can be very frustrating for me). I need to be careful walking, because the soles are still new and slick.
I did have a bit of the black dye bleed onto my white stockings inside. This is pretty typical for leather shoes in my experience, so I expected it and didn’t mind. The stockings cleaned up enough with a wash, and I don’t think anything will show.
They look great, and I have been getting a lot of compliments on them! Paired with the stockings, I’m very pleased!