Posts tagged ‘Converse’

June 27, 2013

Converse All Stars

I love my Converse. Apart from the occasional foray into my ‘grown-up’ shoes and summer sandals, I’m generally to be found in a pair of worn out All Stars. So, my birthday gift this year – a pair of bright red high tops – was perfect. I love them. And so does my daughter. She’s already decided that she needs a pair too, in pink and that my son needs a pair too, in blue. Though if he gets his own way, he’ll be in pink too, which is fair enough.

But her love for them has made me worry a little. Am I too old for Converse? I’m thirty seven now. Will I still be wearing them when I’m forty? Fifty, even? Longer? And is that a problem? Perhaps the day I become too old for Converse is the day my kids go from wanting to emulate my footwear to being embarrassed by it. I know that every parent reaches the day when they stop being Practically Perfect in Every Way (thanks Ms Poppins) to being Embarrassing Parent. I’m ready for that day. In fact, I’m going to embrace all aspects of being Embarrassing Mum when that day arrives. Might dye my hair blue. Or take up the robot dance.


I know that the physiotherapist chap I went to see about my poor knackered old feet wasn’t too thrilled when I told him that I mainly wear Converse, though he did say  ‘at least they’re not ballet flats’ which apparently, along with the dreaded Ugg boots, are worse in terms of support. So maybe the day I hang up my Converse is the day my feet are well and truly too rubbish to cope with the lack of support and I’ll move straight from my high-tops into the velcro-fastening things my beloved Grandma wears. But then she’s 90, so I reckon if I can still bend over to tie my laces by then, I’ll be happy enough.

After a long and hard (or, truthfully, short and flippant) think about it, I’ve decided to keep my Converse on for as long as I choose. To decide for myself whether I’m too old for them or not and not be bullied by anyone into changing into grown up shoes. Unless, I want grown up shoes, of course. But that’s another blog post entirely…

What do you think? Is there an age limit for wearing sneakers? Let me know in the comments!

March 12, 2012

Harvey Nichols: Brunch and a Fashion Show

I spent a lovely morning with my daughter yesterday having brunch and watching a children’s fashion show at Harvey Nichols in Leeds.

Like many girls of her age, Eve has got very firm views about what she likes to wear. Now that she’s spending so much of her time dressed in a school uniform, I like to indulge her a bit when she isn’t at school, even if that means letting her wear an outfit containing all the colours of the rainbow. After all, if you can’t dress like that when you’re five, when can you? Actually, with her colour blocking and clashing prints, I’d go as far as saying that she’s got the measure of recent seasons far more than I have.

We arrived to the event and were shown to our seats in the lovely bunting-filled Espresso Bar in the Victoria Quarter. After being presented with a superb little colouring-in kit, we also were very happy to receive juice, fresh pastries and a sunny fruit salad with accompanying vanilla yoghurt. Perfect food for an easy Sunday brunch. Ooh, and I had a Bellini too, which made me very happy.

Before I go any further, I have to mention the stickers in Eve’s kit. To be honest, they’re wasted on children because they are the best stickers ever! Famous characters of our age are recreated as items of food. So, we have Paris Stilton, Gordon Brownie, and Wayne Pruney…just brilliant. I would have sneaked them away for my own use, but Eve recognised their brilliance too and so they’re now all adorning her favourite notebook. I suppose my lack of stickers gives us a nice excuse to return to the Espresso Bar for brunch another day though, because I really need a Banana Mouskouri sticker of my own.

Anyway, onto the fashion show itself, which was a great showcasing of the Spring and Summer collections available from the ‘Step 2wo’ concession inside the Harvey Nichols Leeds store. A wonderful group of young models, including a gorgeous little three year old boy who received a round of applause every time he emerged, did a great job. Eve thoroughly enjoyed watching them all, and telling me which things she liked the best. By the end of the show, we had a great long wish list between us. Eve particularly loved the denim dress by No Added Sugar, which had great gold-edged ruffles on the bottom. We have a few pieces from this brand already, and I love them all. They have a great quirkiness to them, far removed from the pale pink princess clothing that is often created for girls. The colours are bolder, the shapes are often unusual, with ruffles, asymmetry and draping and, important from a practical point of view, they are really good quality, so they wash and wear well. There is a good selection of items from this range for both boys and girls instore.

Many of the brands represented instore were included in the show, such as Gucci and Versace, although my other favourite pieces were the Paul Smith t-shirt and stripy boy’s shirt, which Ben would look very cool in. I also adored the Stella McCartney citrus print mac (the same print as the adult line for the current season) and green Hunter wellies over a cream dress, which would be perfect junior festival chic! Inside the store, we spent some time choosing our favourite Lelli Kelly sequinned shoes and Converse high tops. We’re going back for a pink pair of those. I live in my Converse, so I think it’s only fitting that I share the love. I have a feeling that the denim No Added Sugar dress will be coming home with us as well.

We had such a great time. It was the first time we have ever really been out for a ‘girly’ time together and I enjoyed it so much. She’s growing up so fast, one day, she’ll be poring over the MAC counter in Harvey Nichols as much as I do. This time, though, it was all about the glittery flower face painting. A nice addition to a lovely event.

With many, many thanks to Harvey Nichols for the invitation.

January 10, 2012

Vintage Threads

Mother Venting wants to know the stories behind our oldest items of clothing and the tag has come to me twice now – from  A Hell of a Woman and From Fun to Mum – which is lovely because it makes me feel all popular, but also that I’d better get on and write something!

I’d love to share a piece of beautiful vintage couture with you, or perhaps something that has been handed down by my mum, from when she was at the Isle of Wight Festival watching Jimi Hendrix. Alas, I have neither. I do, however, have the programme for that festival, but that’s another story.

My oldest, most favourite item of clothing is actually footwear. I can have footwear, right? Good.

I present to you the oldest hightops in town…

Best Shoes Ever.

I bought this pair of Converse nearly twenty years ago. These days I have to wear them rather sparingly. They’re falling apart for one reason, and also, to be honest, they’re really bad for my poor plantar fasciitis suffering feet. But I LOVE them. I love them so much that I cannot buy another, replacement pair because then I would be betraying these ones. Which I admit is a little potty, and doesn’t stop me buying other shoes. Just not Converse high-tops…
They’ve been with me round the world and shared many of my adventures, from wandering around Paris,my favourite city in the world, to being chased by a macaque monkey out of the Batu Caves in Malaysia. Now, I’m a big fan of monkeys and apes. They are after all, our closest relatives, and for family, we treat them prettily shoddily. Don’t even get me started on the poor Orangutan (my favourite ape, and one on the utter verge of extinction) Despite this, it is safe to say that this particular macaque is not on my Christmas card list. The bloody thing was HUGE and was staring at me for ages before running at me with bared teeth. Macaque monkeys have BIG teeth. The reason for this, I found out, having reversed at speed down what amounted to a cliff edge, was that well-meaning (read: idiotic) tourists, had been turning up with loads of food in their bags to feed to the monkeys. Who, considering that they ate all the food offerings left at the Temple, really, really didn’t need half a loaf of bread too, and had taken to attacking people, thinking that they were carrying goodies. Thank goodness my trusty Converse saved me from the sugar-crazed monkey. Even if I looked like an idiot doing a runner. I’m exaggerating about the cliff edge by the way. There were steps. It’s the embarrassment…

Not this actual monkey...his GIANT brother

My podiatrist and physiotherapist do not love my Converse, and I see them shaking their heads when I turn up for appointments wearing them, so much so, that these days I wear my trail-running trainers instead to get the doctor brownie points. However, I will not be throwing them away, even if I cannot wear them as much these days. It’d be like throwing away an old friend and it ain’t gonna happen. Once they’ve finally collapsed, I will let them live with me in retirement forever…
I’m going to tag Minibreak Mummy for this now, because she’s a bit of a magpie so I think she’ll have something great to share. Plus, I love her writing.
PS – If you want to help save the Orang-Utan, please visit The Orangutan Foundation. I realise that this started off with shoes and ended up with primates, but there you go. I cannot help the way my brain works…