“ Brand: Carvela „
I received Debenhams vouchers at Christmas and as I don't really shop in Debenhams I was thinking that the vouchers would go unused. I decided to go in store and have a look around as the vouchers couldn't be used online. They have clothes that are sort of a mis-mash of brands rather than having their own branded clothes and shoes. They do have some that are their own brand.
I was thinking of getting some new jeans as my old ones where beginning to show signs of wear. I couldn't find anything I liked and as after Christmas I wasn't in the best of shape I thought clothes shopping was not a good idea. I instead decided to get some shoes. I saw Carvela shoes and I wasn't aware that Debenhams sold Kurt Geiger's shoes. Normally I would buy them online or in store from their store so it was good to know that I can get them from Debenhams as well.
These are platform heels with a thick buckle slingback in a black/grey colour combination. I love the colour combination with the black exterior colour and a silver/grey colour for the platform, heel and buckle. The buckle feature and the colour combo as well as the style of the shoe makes me think this is a shoe that would go well with casual shoes. They are described as a party shoe that is the perfect addition to evening wear by Carvela but I would disagree. I wear them with jeans and other casual wear.
The heel is high at 5 inches and it is thin so it is prone to wear. The platform is a little different in style to other platform shoes because the platform doesn't cover the whole of the bottom of the shoe. There is about ½ a centimetre before the platform starts. It does look rather dangerous and I was thinking that I could easily trip. But ignoring this I still got them and hoped they wouldn't cause me to fall over (and look a fool). The grey buckle is also a feature I like very much and adds character to the shoes. The front of the shoe is in a sort of a half heart shape which is more interesting than a normal rounded cut. The upper lining is leather and the soles are synthetic.
I have worn them three or four times since I bought them and I have found that they start to become uncomfortable after 6 hours of wear and this is because of the high heel length. The soles are comfortable and so is the flat part of my feel but my heels kill. I find after about 1 hour my heels become normal again (ie I feel no more pain).They were priced at £120 and I would never pay that much for these shoes. They were reduced to £59 which is more my price range.
I think by now people reading my reviews have pretty much guessed that I am shoe obsessed! I work long and hard for my money and I like to spend it wisely but I also like to treat myself. I'm either suited and booted for work or in old clothes and mud with the horses so when I go out I really like to dress up and be really girly. I do have slightly expensive taste in shoes but I do find that you pay for quality when it comes to shoes but that doesn't mean I don't have cheaper shoes in my wardrobe.
I own a large collection of Carvela shoes as I find them great quality and that I still have pairs that I bought over 5 years ago! I have a tendency to add to my collection whenever I am attracted to a pair of shoes and as long as my bank balance is good enough, I'd never choose shoes over paying my bills! A few months ago I was browsing the Kurt Geiger website looking specifically at the Carvela brand and I came across a pair of shoes which immediately caught my eye - a pair called Arwen.
What Carvela say:
"Arwen by Carvela is a distinctive court shoe featuring undershot platform and thick slingback strap with chunky buckle. A fun party shoe, these are the perfect way to add interest to all your favourite evening wear!"
What immediately attracted me to these shoes as the wide buckle and the undershot platform. Platforms have dominated shoe design for a few years now and designers are starting to use them in different ways such as an enclosed platform and an undershot platform like Carvela have used for Arwen.
Arwen comes in either black or blue. I opted for the black version and the picture for this review is of the black shoes. The undershot platform is in contrasting grey which goes well with the metallic buckle and wide metallic ankle strap. There is also a slight platform in between the undershot platform and the actual shoe itself this is again another shade of grey and adds a layered design to the shoe.
The main body of the shoe is leather which is exactly what I'd expect from a Carvela shoe. I found that the leather is soft enough to be comfortable but not too soft that it creases which can happen when ultra soft leather is used. The lining is a synthetic/ leather mix and is metallic which again contrasts with the undershot platform and is the same colour as the wide ankle strap. There is some slight padding in the heel and the footbed of the shoe which adds a bit of extra comfort. The toe is a round design which I find there is enough room for your toes as there is nothing worse than your toes being crushed. The leather strap of the shoe is as I said above metallic and it is adjustable a few times to tighten or loosen around your ankle.
The heel height is a whopping 13cm (5") which is quite high by itself but as the platform is quite high as well, it is roughly 2cm, it does seem to take some of the height off the heel and balances out. The metallic heel is rather slim but it seems sturdy enough! When I first put them on there was a wobble but once I had found my balance they were fine to walk in and I didn't actually find them as high as I thought I would.
I've only worn my Arwen shoes a few times and I did find that I had to adjust the buckle because I'd done it too tight which was starting to rub into my heel but the leather does give a bit so I then found myself having to tighten them up again when I wore them last! These shoes despite the heel height are quite comfortable to walk on even with the undershot platform but I wouldn't recommend that they should be worn for hours upon end as I do have great joy of taking them off after a night out. What little padding the heel and footbed do have is a great relief as it just helps the shoe become even more comfortable. The only downside I suppose about these shoes is that with a lot of wear the heel tip will need to be replaced but this is hardly an issue really.
Arwen are available at all Carvela retailers (as well as the Kurt Geiger website) such as John Lewis and Debenhams and cost around £120.00 per pair although I have seen the price differ slightly.
Despite the price tag these shoes are lovely to look at and comfortable to wear so I don't have any gripes especially as they are made to a very high standard and will no doubt last me for quite a few years to come.