Tag Archives: fashion

The Weekend Dress, circa 1986

In the late 1980s, I was a big fan of Banana Republic. Actually, I’ve bought items from Banana Republic many times since then, but the Banana Republic of today is very different from the Banana Republic of then. 

It used to be that Banana Republic was more of a catalog experience, where the catalogs were printed on cream colored, heavy stock paper. The items were not photographed but illustrated, and they were described in expansive, worldly prose. Continue reading The Weekend Dress, circa 1986

Tuesday Shoe Review: The best winter boots I’ve ever worn

Tuesday Shoe Review is a new recurring feature here at My Brilliant Mistakes. I spend an inordinate amount of time trying, buying, comparing, and of course wearing shoes. In itself that might not be reason enough to blog about them, but I suspect I’m not alone in this obsession. In Tuesday Shoe Review we discuss shoes you should buy, shoes you shouldn’t buy, and shoes you might wish you could buy but you can’t because they are mine, mine, mine.

I’ve heard it said that there’s no such thing as bad weather, only bad clothing. I’ve been leaving the car home and walking to work more lately, so I needed some snow-worthy footwear to keep my toes warm and dry and my feet slip-proof.

My KEEN Winthrop Boots in action
My KEEN Winthrop Boots in action

These are the boots I bought a few months back: KEEN Winthrop Boots. I chose a red-brown color that the company calls “Madder Brown,” which coordinates well with browns, blues, greens, everything. I like them equally well with pants and with skirts. The upper is leather and boiled wool — the wool is in back — and the sole has a hearty tread that holds steady on ice. I’ve trudged through two-foot-deep snow and trotted across pools of icy water, and throughout my feet stayed as toasty-roasty and dry as if I were wearing socks and sitting by a fireplace.

And comfortable! Wearing them is like wearing cushy slippers all day. I have a strict rule not to wear the same pair of shoes two days in a row: Shoes need at least 24 hours to dry out after you’ve worn them to discourage the growth of bacteria (smelly and destructive to the shoe), plus I find my feet hurt less at the end of the day if I vary heel heights and footbed shapes through the week. These boots are so terrifically comfortable that I have broken my no-repeats rule twice in the past two months — one week I wore the boots four days in a row! I tell you, this time it’s love.

The boots are so warm they are suited only to cold weather. Once the temperature rises above 60F I’ll have to pack these away, so I’m already scouting KEEN’s shoes for a warm-weather substitute.

I would like to think that Spring is right around the corner, but in case it is not, you would do well to try out a pair of these boots. Winter will have no power over you again.