“But don’t they make granny shoes?”
This comment – or one very much like it – comes up every time I collaborate with Hotter – the British shoe brand that, for over 50 years, has been synonymous with comfort. It’s part of the reason, I suspect, why they’re so keen to work with bloggers: to demonstrate that every woman (every one, they don’t just do ladies’ shoes) deserves comfortable, stylish footwear.
I mean, does this look like your gran?
Christmas is such a busy time of year, with lots of running about to shops, to parties and to see friends and family – meaning that your footwear has to be practical as well as beautiful. So when Hotter asked me to pick out a pair of shoes to see me through the festivities, it was perfect timing. I knew I wanted some sort of party shoe from my recent visit to the Glasgow store and had a few choices in mind after browsing the website – but came away with none of them. In the end, it was the Olga heel* that turned my head – it doesn’t seem that way in the picture, but in real life the texture of the suede that they use has almost a hint of glitter to it. The effect is fairly subtle, but it’s enough to elevate (ha!) these shoes to into something that will jazz up any outfit for a Christmas party.
I’ve written before about the care and attention you will receive from Hotter’s highly-trained staff on a visit to their stores, and this was again really obvious on my most recent visit. Endless patience for the girl hoping to try on three different style of shoe in full and half sizes – although a hidden bonus of the Olga heel is the dual-fitting insole which can be removed if you need a wider fit.
To give the shoes the spin they deserved, I got dressed up in my festive finery (my Christmas skirt in November! SACRILEGE!) and bribed Jehane to take some pictures of me with the promise of churros and mulled wine from Glasgow’s Christmas market.
Glasgow actually has two Christmas markets this year, and had I thought about it properly the larger one in George Square might have given us better lighting with which to take these photos. That said, though, the St Enoch Square Christmas market is a pretty special place for my family and I. It was there, last year, that my sister staged a surprise reunion with my mum, who she’d had convinced that she wasn’t coming home for Christmas. I lured my mum into town with the promise of a festive afternoon, before springing the surprise on her in the mulled wine/cider bar. A couple that we got talking to before I went to meet my mum, who had actually just come home themselves from Abu Dhabi, filmed the whole thing and it’s a fantastic two and a half minutes of tape that never fails to reduce me to a giddy, teary mess.
I really dislike the taste of wine, but whether it’s the warmth or the spices I discount mulled wine from that category entirely – although the fruity ciders that have been on offer over the past couple of years are an even better bet. The churros, however, were a bit of a disappointment – we had imagined that we would be getting something sweet but instead they were kind of flavourless, almost wooden sticks of fried dough albeit smothered in marshmallows and off-brand Nutella. I’m sure I had the same experience last Christmas and you’d think for six quid I would have learned, but NOPE.
Jehane is a far, far better photographer than I and I shudder to think what I would have ended up with in the low lighting conditions without her expertise. Turns out it’s really hard to take outfit photos which focus on your black shoes when it’s dark and you also want to get the Christmas lights in, who knew? But I really love how these pictures turned out, which means I will almost certainly be bribing her with sweeties and gin to do this for me again.
As for how I, who has practically lived in the same pair of Adidas trainers since all those falling incidents I had over the summer knocked my confidence, got on spending the whole evening in heels? Absolutely dandy. If “granny shoes” means glitter and feeling like I’m walking around on a cloud all night, just tell me where to sign.
This post contains a PR sample, but all views are my own and unbiased. Thanks to my long-suffering bestie Jehane for being my official photographer.