STYLE FILE: REASONS TO DRESS

This morning we head to Italy to catch up with the voice of style blog Reasons to Dress.

You're on a first date, what shoe do you wear? This is a TOUGH one. I would want to be irresistible, because I can't handle rejection, so I would immediately think killer heels. At the last minute though, I would look at myself in the mirror and decide I was trying too hard and giving off a desperate vibe. At that point, I would go into my "already 10 minutes late" panic mode, whereby I try on every single pair of shoes I own. In the end, I would end up wearing the same pair of standard mid-calf dark brown leather boots with a sensible heel that I always wear when I change my mind at the last minute.

What's one fashion rule you always break? "Don't Wear Brown & Black Together" To set the record straight, there are some situations where this may not work, but most of the time this combo gets a bad rep for no reason. After all, leopard print is brown and black together and you can never go wrong with leopard print!

When it comes to shoes, how much is too much to pay? We haven't talked about the fact that people in Italy make WAY less than people in North America! Keeping this in mind, I now buy less and buy better. I have the added benefit of buying directly in Italy so I can find exceptional quality, real leather shoes at a decent price without the importation markup.  I just can't bring myself to pay more than 150 euro for any one pair of shoes/boots and they must be real leather, handmade and usually made in Europe. This, however, doesn't stop me from spending 500+ euro on 4 (or even 8), excellent quality pairs when the sales start!

Who is your favorite shoe designer? Oh dear. Okay, in a fantasy world where I am tall, thin and a very wealthy, with numerous events to go to on private yachts that dock at V.I.P Cannes parties, I would say Giuseppe Zanotti Design. His shoes are incredible, like walking on a surreal, sexy dream. Once I met one of the brand's top designers at a fashion party in Paris in the Louvre Museum and EVEN THEN I was in my sensible mid-calf leather boots!! N°2 Fantasy,  I would say anything in the MM6 Collection from Maison Martin Margiela, but that's still out of my budget. I do a LOT of research into shoe brands so I would say my 3 favorite brands right now are Vic Matié (exotic leathers, handmade in Italy ), Zinda (Spanish brand with awesome designs) and Donna Più (completely artisan, handmade in Italy with the BEST quality calf leather on the market and excellent prices).

If you were a shoe, what shoe would you be? Once upon a time, I had this beautiful pair of peep toe, leather wedges in a supple beige leather. They were everything I dreamed a shoe should be, elongating, sexy, feminine and perfect for almost every occasion. The only problem with them was that they were SO UNCOMFORTABLE. My feet were pinched, squeezed, tortured and pushed to the limit until they callused and bled. You would think that after the first time wearing them I would have thrown those peep toes out the window but I didn't. I wore them over and over again until I wore them out, each time was more painful than the last. And I was SAD to put them away for the last time. So I would say, I'm the pair of shoes that looks good from afar but chances are once you have me on I'm very painful. But if you love me, you deal with the pain because its worth it to have me around.