12 April 2011

Comfort Is Not A Dirty Word - feet rejoice as new Rockport concept store to open in Dublin

Rockport's Sasha peep toe bootie in black suede
I nearly spat out my coffee when I read Christian Louboutin’s ridiculous notions on comfort over on Nicky’s Rag Tales recently.

He opined: “I hate the whole concept of comfort. It’s like when people say, ‘Well, we’re not really in love, but we’re in a comfortable relationship.’ You’re abandoning a lot of ideas when you are too into comfort. ‘Comfy’ – that’s one of the worst words! I just picture a woman feeling bad, with a big bottle of alcohol, really puffy.”

I suspect Mr Louboutin’s opinion would change pretty quickly if he himself had to wear his towering 8-inch-high creations. Not to mention the fact that uncomfortably high shoes can cause the wearer all manner of problems, like corns, bunions, joint pain and an increased risk of stress fractures and osteoarthritis. And Planet Fashion dwellers wonder why they sometimes seem a little disassociated from us mere civilians who have to live - and actually WALK ABOUT - in the real world…

I’m much more of the Tom Pecheux school of thought. The Estee Lauder creative makeup director advised InStyle magazine that “instead of flat shoes in the morning and heels at night, wear a small heel all day. It’s more chic.” As well as practical, and that dirtiest word of all: comfortable, too.

To date, these have been our only options: suffer in a pair of cripplingly painful shoes, lug around an extra pair to change into, or wear a small heel or flat shoe for the duration. But for those of us who can’t resist the leg lengthening properties of a high heel, while preferring something we can actually wear all day, then rejoice. Because there is another option.

From the end of this month, those lovely, lovely people at Rockport are finally opening their first concept store in Dublin. Already situated in Clerys on O’Connell Street, with one word, Rockport have opened my eyes to a whole new way of life. And that word is: walkability.

Because as well as being stylish and on-trend, Rockport has invested its footwear with high-tech, athletic inspired comfort. Part of the Adidas family, Rockport’s footwear benefits from their shock absorption technology, adiPRENE, as well as other leading edge initiatives that include: nano-glide technology in the lining, for less friction; additional arch support for a lovely cushioning feel; rubber outsoles for grip, and breathable materials, for moisture absorption.


Rockport's Sasha peep toe in teal
Anna motor boots in tar


And while that all might sound like marketing mumbo jumbo, I urge you to try a pair of Rockports for yourself. Because as anyone who complimented my lace-up Anna boots this winter can attest, I am a complete and utter convert to this brand. Shoes that look good and feel good – well, it’s about bloody time. And now Himself has invested in a fetching pair of Rockport boots, he’s waxing lyrical about air and slippers and clouds an’ all.


Janae pull on boots in black

Janae pumps in heather grey

Janae booties in dark brown
But it’s the ladies shoes I’m interested in, and I’m delighted to report that Rockport’s Autumn Winter 2011 women’s collection covers all bases, from office to bar to club and pretty much everything in between. There is so much here that I love and want to own, from the Anna biker boots to the teal Sasha peep toes to the high black suede booties. But the cream of the crop has to be the Janae collection,  in 3 styles and 4 colourways of black, dark brown, raisin or heather grey. According to Rockport’s research, Janae has the ultimate heel height to pitch ratio which, alongside a platform in the forefoot, combines to create an elegant, comfortable, more-than-4-inches-high, stylish yet walkable heel.

So the only foot problem we’ll need to worry about is which pair to invest in first.

The Rockport Concept Store will be housed at 33 Wicklow Street and open from Saturday 21st April. Prices will range between €80 and €240.
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