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I have loved patent shoes for as long as I can remember. Well I know the exact moment I fell in love with patent shoes and it all boils down to my first ever pair of shoes (fitted by Clarks) and they were a mary jane style burgundy patent shoes my mum bought me for school. Since that very moment I have loved patent shoes and I can't help buying them!
My shoe collection is extensive and by extensive I mean over 200 pairs and is probably worth more than my car put together but I work very hard for my money and I feel that I should treat myself to something I enjoy. That is my excuse and I am sticking to it! I'm a huge fan of Carvela shoes, I know they come with a higher price tag than some shoes but they are in my opinion very well made and they last a hell of a long time. One pair I bought before becoming a bit too heavily pregnant and have had to resort to flat shoes were again from the Carvela range are called Arnold (of all names to choose!).
What Carvela say about Arnold:
"Arnold by Carvela is a stylish court with a chunky wood effect high heel. The patent finish adds a touch of glamour whilst the contrasting stitch detail adds a quirky edge. Team with a pencil skirt by day or skinny jeans by night to show off style Arnold this season."
Arnold come in black, red and taupe but regardless of colour they are all patent. I chose taupe mainly because I always buy black shoes for work and I really need to inject a bit of colour in to what I wear even if it isn't bright and in your face!
Arnold are branded as a casual shoe which is very true as I have worn these to work and out on evenings out when going for a meal as they are not too dressy to look out of place in a pub!
Arnold are made of leather with a patent covering. They have a lovely round toe, which has plenty of room for one's toes. I hate having crushed feet especially in very pointy shoes which at the end of a long day can be quite uncomfortable but provided you get a pair which fit properly the toe of these shoes is actually quite roomy. The stitch detail on these shoes is actually quite simple but effective as it provides that much needed detail to brighten up what would otherwise be a plain court shoe. The lining is synthetic and is the same colour as the main colour of the shoe, it has slight padding to the heel and footbed which gives a bit more comfort than having nothing at all.
As confident as I am walking in slim stiletto heels it is always nice to having something a bit more substantial to walk on and Arnold provide a lovely, chunky wooden block heel which is a lot more comfortable to walk on that a super thin heel! It is 8cm high which is a big shorter than the heels I usually wear and I was liking the lower heel as it is a lot more comfortable. The wooden heel also provides a nice contrast to the shoe.
I found these shoes incredibly comfortable to wear especially as I was (still am!) pregnant as I wasn't ready to wear flats all the time as I love wearing heels and whilst I still found them comfortable I was determined to wear them. Having the smaller heal compared to a lot of my shoes I really noticed a difference which was a good thing as the heel being lower and chunkier provided more comfort for me and a bit more support then a thinner heel would. The leather is as always soft and supple which is great as it manages to soften up after they have been worn a few times which reduces rubbing. Fortunately these shoes have never rubbed me or caused me any issues as sometimes shoes can rub me on my toes but these haven't. What I would recommend is that you invest in a patent protection spray as I find patent shoes mark and scratch a bit too easily and when you are paying quite a bit for a pair of shoes you don't want them ruined especially if you wear them a lot of the time.
Arnold are available at all Carvela retailers (Kurt Geiger, John Lewis etc) and as I said come in the three above colours (all patent). They start in a size 3 and go up to an 8 and only come in one width fitting. They are currently priced at £110.00 which I think is great value for these shoes.
For me, these have provided some much needed comfort in the later stages of my pregnancy and I have found them incredibly comfortable to walk in without any issues such as rubbing. The leather is nice and soft and they are made to a high standard so I am expecting them to last for quite a long time meaning I get my monies worth!