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#37 tailleuse

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Posted 22 June 2014 - 08:00 AM

I wore 3-1/2" to 4" heels regularly with business dress when I was younger. But I was fanatical about good fit - no blisters for me! I also have a foot problem that the higher heel helped to alleviate. I think the heel height just depends on the wearer. I liked the addional "stature" they gave me. I'm 5'6". I think a higher heel could also benefit shorter women also.

Here is one thing that I feel is mandatory for virtually all women any time they are dressed for business - of any kind - nylon hosiery. I have only known one person in my entire life that had legs that did not require the benefits of nylons. To me, no matter how nice the style and fit of the clothing, even if the clothing is custom, no nylons = sloppy dress - virtually without exception.

 

I'm short.  I don't feel the need to elevate my height.  If men are going to condescend to me they're going to do it whatever height I am.  I don't need to make myself feel vulnerable on shoe stilts.  Even in the low heels I sometimes wear I've had too many instances of my ankle twisting.  Very high heels are known to put extraordinary pressure on the foot and eventually to deform it.  I've read articles in which women are instructed on how to bear the pain of high heels -- I find that ridiculous.

 

Nylons or tights (which I prefer, nylons are too fragile and why are women always required to display their bodies when men conceal theirs and are more comfortable?) do create a more polished look, but things are more relaxed now.  Thank Heaven there's one item that women can go without most of the time in warmer weather.

 

The difficulty women have in finding comfortable, attractive clothing, and the discomfort of demanding quality of the clothing compared to that worn by men speaks volumes about our culture.  The sexism is at the level of the work uniform.


Edited by tailleuse, 22 June 2014 - 08:04 AM.

Dignity. Always, dignity. (Singin' in the Rain)


#38 SPOOKIETOO

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Posted 22 June 2014 - 08:24 AM

In the majority of businesses in my region, if a man is dressed in a decent pair of khakis, a nice golf style shirt and a decent pair of nice loafers, he is "professionally" dressed and quite presentable.

If you dressed Oprah, Hillary and Cindy Crawford in these identical quality items, the only thing missing from their "professional" ensemble would be the caps with the little golden arches!

Unfortunately it is still a man's world and possibly even moreso now than say 20 years ago. If wearing a higher pair of heels or nylons gives a woman a barely perceptable edge - she should go with it as comfort often translates itself to confidence. And quite frankly, the fact that I was the one wearing the jacket has made a difference on more than one occasion.

When I have added a nice silk tie with a clean windsor and nice clip to the mix, along with special attention to the eye makeup- it really throws them off balance.

I'll take a necktie over a pair of nylons anytime.....but I'll always suffer the nylons anyway.
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#39 tailleuse

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Posted 23 June 2014 - 08:37 AM

In the majority of businesses in my region, if a man is dressed in a decent pair of khakis, a nice golf style shirt and a decent pair of nice loafers, he is "professionally" dressed and quite presentable.

If you dressed Oprah, Hillary and Cindy Crawford in these identical quality items, the only thing missing from their "professional" ensemble would be the caps with the little golden arches!

Unfortunately it is still a man's world and possibly even moreso now than say 20 years ago. If wearing a higher pair of heels or nylons gives a woman a barely perceptable edge - she should go with it as comfort often translates itself to confidence. And quite frankly, the fact that I was the one wearing the jacket has made a difference on more than one occasion.

When I have added a nice silk tie with a clean windsor and nice clip to the mix, along with special attention to the eye makeup- it really throws them off balance.

I'll take a necktie over a pair of nylons anytime.....but I'll always suffer the nylons anyway.

 

I agree, women should wear whatever is comfortable and makes them feel confident.  One image stick with me, however:  There was a bomb scare or other disturbance in Washington and all the women TV reporters had to take off their shoes in order to run. There were photos of them with their shoes in their hands. You should not have to remove a basic item of clothing to do your job.

 

Alice Walker and others have said that super-high heels are self-fetishizing.  Women complain about how uncomfortable they are and yet they're the ones wearing these shoes and turning themselves into objects.


Dignity. Always, dignity. (Singin' in the Rain)


#40 SPOOKIETOO

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Posted 23 June 2014 - 01:37 PM

Tailleuse- my feet severely overpronate. Heels of at least 3" cause me to walk more correctly on the outside of my foot, reduce the pressure on my instep, helps to properly align my knee and hip joints(reducing pain and wear and tear) and in general gives me a lighter more pleasant stride. I sold shoes when I was younger and I understand good construction and fit. I have no hammertoes, no bunyons. I vary my heel height regularly.

My niece however over supinates causing her to twist her ankles quite easily- especially once the heel has any sign of wear. I can understand why this would be a problem.

As for bomb scares, I would never consider that a normal day at work in the USA. I'd pull off my heels and run like hell without concern for destroying a $20 pair of nylons if need be.

I once had a job as an Interior Designer in a massively huge chemical plant. We were expected to dress professionally. I arrived at a first time appointment to discover I had 3 flights of open grate metal stairs to climb on the exterior of the building which meant tip-toeing on the fronts of my heels all the way up. Any deviation would detroy my shoes immediately. I arrived at the top only to be greeted by the suction of the 6 massive turbines ( each 10x the size of a large jet engine) located and running on the building next door. My skirt was immediately sucked over the top of my head. I wore slacks and flats for all future visits.


But that was nothing. The number one rule for all employees was to always no where the closest shower was located. Always. They sat open in the middle of hallways and in the corners of conference rooms. Virtually every walking area had multiple pipes running overhead with no way of knowing what was in them. All employees had the same mandatory second rule ( corporate officers, engineers, interior designers, IT systems personnal, attorneys, assembly workers, etc.). The second you felt a liquid hit your body you must strip naked while heading for the nearest shower and all personnel in each building were trained to hose you off thoroughly and provide you with coverage as soon as possible.

I'm not sure I would stop to remove my shoes for a bombscare, but if I knew there was a good chance I was getting doused with hydrochloric acid - I think I'd get naked!
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#41 tailleuse

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Posted 24 June 2014 - 07:24 AM

As for bomb scares, I would never consider that a normal day at work in the USA. I'd pull off my heels and run like hell without concern for destroying a $20 pair of nylons if need be.

 

 

You've had some adventures.  Of course a bomb scare isn't a normal day, but one ought to be able to flee in a dangerous situation without the need to remove one's shoes.  The women weren't trying to preserve their shoes, they couldn't run fast enough in them so they had to pick them up and carry them in their hands as they ran.  I read an article about Maria Shriver that talked about how she had an assisted who carried her belongings because she couldn't manage in her very high heels.  Some years ago, the Editor of  a fashion magazine for teenagers broke her foot because of her heels.  Too many women are choosing how they look over practicality and safety.  If more women eschewed ultra-high heels, there'd be more incentive to make attractive low-heeled shoes.  It's not like they haven't existed in the past.


Edited by tailleuse, 24 June 2014 - 07:27 AM.

Dignity. Always, dignity. (Singin' in the Rain)


#42 beaubrummel

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Posted 24 June 2014 - 11:30 AM

 

You've had some adventures.  Of course a bomb scare isn't a normal day, but one ought to be able to flee in a dangerous situation without the need to remove one's shoes.  The women weren't trying to preserve their shoes, they couldn't run fast enough in them so they had to pick them up and carry them in their hands as they ran.  I read an article about Maria Shriver that talked about how she had an assisted who carried her belongings because she couldn't manage in her very high heels.  Some years ago, the Editor of  a fashion magazine for teenagers broke her foot because of her heels.  Too many women are choosing how they look over practicality and safety.  If more women eschewed ultra-high heels, there'd be more incentive to make attractive low-heeled shoes.  It's not like they haven't existed in the past.

 

I agree with some of this, but it isn't so cut and dry. While 'always be prepared' might be the motto for the boy-scouts, it doesn't entirely apply to the modern business woman. Yes of course, IF there was an emergency, it would be great to be wearing running shoes and have a bag with all essential items for a 3 day evacuation situation, but that's hardly a normal day for most of us, so dressing everyday in preparation for such an event is just as impractical as dressing everyday for an avant garde runway show. And whether or not any of us want to believe it, there is an expectation for women to naturally dress, well, like women; i.e. blouse, skirt, heels, so forth. Every woman, as well all know, is different. I've known some women who are so comfortable in high heels that wearing flats is awkward, and the opposite can be said as well. Bespoke shoes can make a difference in comfort level since the last is built around your foot, but heels are still heels. As far as women eschewing ultra high heels, well that's another not so cut and dry statement. There's more to it than just impracticality. Obviously wearing an 8 inch heel with a platform just because it's the "in" designer right now doesn't make much sense to me either, but there is quite a fair amount of sex appeal in heels, and that's the intended design of heels. When a woman is in heels, her back is usually straighter, her walk is different, usually more perked up and the elevation increases muscle activity in the legs and butt. It's a way to add more physical attraction to the wearer, there are more extreme designs that are fetish shoes, but that's definitely not business attire, well not most businesses. There are more designers whose shoes are a bit higher than they probably should be for most women to be wearing all day, but they are running a business and that's what sells now. There are still classic designs from some of the bigger names that sell lower kitten heels that are still very attractive and much more comfortable than the 5" sky highs that are so popular. 



#43 tailleuse

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Posted 24 June 2014 - 02:52 PM

 

. Obviously wearing an 8 inch heel with a platform just because it's the "in" designer right now doesn't make much sense to me either, but there is quite a fair amount of sex appeal in heels, and that's the intended design of heels. When a woman is in heels, her back is usually straighter, her walk is different, usually more perked up and the elevation increases muscle activity in the legs and butt.

 

Looking sexy at work shouldn't be a major concern for women.  Imagine discussing a man's desire to be sexy to this extent, while wearing uncomfortable shoes at work.  It's impossible.  All the justifications of why women are wearing these shoes only underscore that women are still not being regarded as full-fledged professionals whose work is more important than their appearance.


Dignity. Always, dignity. (Singin' in the Rain)


#44 greger

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Posted 26 June 2014 - 09:49 AM

Tailluse, You think a male banker is fine wearing sweats when setting a bank loan for a customer? There are dress codes for men too, depending on the type of job. Around here loggers have to wear cork boots and stagged pants for safety. My whole entire life (closer to sixty than fifty) and nobody who works at a hardwear store ever wore a suit unless he is going to a bank for a loan. And who walks into a hardwear store with a tie or lapels- it is almost unheard of. No doubt the Hippie generation fought dress codes and they are extremely slack now, but people still dress to what works best for them and the company male or female. I've seen males who were clueless being told what to wear, if they want the job- say that to a female and womens lib steps in and makes a ruckus.


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#45 beaubrummel

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Posted 27 June 2014 - 05:20 AM

 

Looking sexy at work shouldn't be a major concern for women.  Imagine discussing a man's desire to be sexy to this extent, while wearing uncomfortable shoes at work.  It's impossible.  All the justifications of why women are wearing these shoes only underscore that women are still not being regarded as full-fledged professionals whose work is more important than their appearance.

 

I disagree. It's not about looking "sexy", which is why I didn't use that word. I said there was sex appeal, but that was in the content of the actual shoe and how it transforms the overall look. Looking "sexy" isn't entirely appropriate for business, in fact it becomes more of a distraction. Looking "impressive" is the more appropriate term, and I feel this holds true for women AND men. In a business environment, you should try to be more than just presentable. "Just presentable" to me is akin to achieving a "just passing" grade. It might get you through, but you aren't impressing anyone. 

 

If, however, you make it a priority to dress in a professional matter, put yourself together well, etc, I will just about guarantee you will be looked at in a more positive manner. For women, heels are a part of the deal. For men, someone who is looking to achieve some professional business status will undoubtedly need a suit and proper shoes, and if two gentlemen were sitting next to each other, the man in a tailored suit and well made shoes will look more put together than a man in a pair of loose slacks, a polo and shoes not fit for a teenagers sweet 16. And it happens all the time. We live in a vain world and we are all judged on our appearance, even if only at first. But anyone who tells you it doesn't matter is lying. If the President and First Lady walked around in pajama jeans and crocs, the world would look at us much differently. 

 

It's one of the reasons why I love tailored clothing so much. Tailors are able to give someone an opportunity they might not have had before. Maybe you are going on a job interview, and you're sitting next to someone who has similar qualifications, but you show up in a t shirt and dirty jeans and your competition looks like a magazine cover, the impression to the employer is that they are serious about themselves and their career. 

 

Maybe you go to a friends wedding, you meet someone who is attracted to you initially because of how well put together you are as opposed to many others who are not and then it turns into your future spouse, who knows. 

 

But unless you are independently wealthy to the point that you can wear sweat pants and slippers with no concern in the world, then I truly believe you are much better off dressing head to toe everyday like you mean business. You are selling yourself with your appearance. It's a package deal, so why not make the package look exquisite? 

 


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