OTZ Shoes:
B.C. inspiration

otz-motorcycleSome new brands cause quite a stir here at doddsshoe.com, and OTZShoes is definitely one of them. What are they? They’re a casual, zero drop, minimalist shoe that provide tons of comfort, and come with ice-age inspiration. That’s right, the muse for this new brand is “Ötzi,” the iceman. Ötzi is a well-preserved mummy, dating back to about 3300BC. Why would he be inspirational to a California shoe company over 5000 years later? Ötzi was found wearing the oldest known pair of shoes.

 

 

OTZ-original-shoes

Very sophisticated for his time, Ötzi the iceman was found with shoes that were waterproof and insulated, ideal for walking across snow.

These shoes were remarkable considering the time period…they were actually waterproof, made of deer hide stitched to a wide bear skin sole, making them ideal for trekking across the snow. Internally, a woven net filled with dried grass and moss provided warmth and comfort, and functioned like modern socks. Ludo, the creative director of OTZ Shoes, heard about this find in 2005 and decided to take inspiration from those shoes, incorporate today’s trends and technologies, and the concept of OTZ shoes was born.

Some of that new technology is the patent pending CORKlite footbed.

OTZ-corklite

OTZ’s CORKlite footbed is featured in their classic OTZ300GMS style. This lightweight soft cork footbed is made from compression molded EVA, and wrapped in a 1.8mm cork casing. The EVA provides shock absorption and cushion with each step, and the cork provides antimicrobial properties that reduce bacterial build up so you can wear this style with or without socks. The 1.8mm suede lining helps wick away moisture, providing a healthy and dry environment. The CORKlite footbed also helps promote healthy posture and will eventually mold to the shape of your foot for a customized and cushioned ride.

OTZ-300gms

The OTZ300GMS provides the ultimate in casual comfort with a variety of uppers to match your lifestyle.

The OTZ300GMS style comes with the comfort of CORKlite, and a variety of different uppers.  The colorful Belize version features Belize cotton trim, inspired from Central American designs. All of the linen versions feature Italian made coarse linen that has been stone washed for a unique look and lightweight feel. For something a little bit more weather resistant, the waxed canvas upper is water resistant AND stain resistant thanks to the wax content, yet the canvas still keeps this version breathable. Whatever upper you choose, it is stitched directly to the outsole for increased durability and minimal use of glues.

OTZ300GMS fitting instructions

OTZ-fun

 

Inspired from the past and crafted with today in mind, OTZShoes are a fun new addition to doddsshoe.com.

 

Steal the Show this Prom

It’s that time again…the magical time of year that the young and fresh get to pick out beautiful dresses, get giddy about who-asks-whom, and limo services get a lot of business. It’s Prom season!
Once the perfect outfit (not necessarily a dress these days!) is picked out, make sure it is complete from head to toe with the perfect shoe. As Cinderella would say after the biggest dance of her life, you never know the difference one shoe can make. From girly glam to punk-rock chic, we’ve got your prom covered.

single-strap-sandals-jlaw-bullock-aniston

Stars like Jennifer Lawrence, Sandra Bullock, and Jennifer Aniston love the simple elegance of a single strap, ankle wrap high heel. This look would be great for prom!

madden-girl-darrlin

Get the red carpet look for less with the Madden Girl Darrlin.

One of the biggest trends in dress shoes right now is simple elegance. Stars like Jennifer Lawrence, Sandra Bullock, and Jennifer Aniston opt to show off their pedicures with a simple, one-strap d’orsay sandal. A look like this helps to accent and not distract from the real “pièce de résistance,” the dress! The stiletto heel helps elongate your leg, and the flat midsole doesn’t weigh down your look like a platform might. The simple ankle strap helps keep the shoes in place, and the thin strap across the toe perfectly highlights those dolled up toes. Get this celeb look for less with the Madden Girl Darrlin, and you’ll feel like you’re on the red carpet!

sneakers-for-prom

Stay comfy and cute for prom in Converse sneakers. Look how happy Hailee Steinfeld looks at the Oscars in her Chuck Taylors!

toms-classic-glitter

Dance the night away in the TOMS Glitter Classics.

If you’re more of the cute tomboy type, prom doesn’t mean you have to throw away your personal style to rock a prom look. If heels just aren’t your thing, stay true to who you are by wearing sneakers or other flats. Hailee Steinfeld wore matching Converse Chuck Taylors to the Oscars, proving that with the right attitude, sneakers have a place at dressed-up events. Or you can find a happy medium by finding a shoe with some bling but still flat enough to dance the night away in, like the TOMS Glitter Classic.

For prom, our best advice is to stay true to who you are because the most attractive thing you can be is confident! Here’s to a night to remember!

Holiday Gift Guide 2013

The holiday season is upon us, and as much as I love shopping, gift buying can be overwhelming! Thank goodness I work in retail, right? I was able to find gifts for so many of my loved ones right here at doddsshoe.com.

First, my mom. She is a teacher and is on her feet chasing around kids all day, so I knew she’d appreciate something to slip into at the end of the day that would put a smile on her face and relieve some of the stress that builds up on her tired soles. Haflinger slippers were my immediate first instinct…but there are so many great options! The Charisma is so pretty and delicate with the flower appliques across the top, the Calypso is so fun and colorful (just like her!), but the Classic AS Slipper is always a good go-to.

But then I remembered her collection of giraffe figurines in our curio cabinet while growing up, and it hit me…the Jimmy! Who can resist that long neck and those adorable eyes? Perfect gift for Mom: check!

haflinger-jimmy-for-momNow for Dad…he’s tough sometimes. All I can remember him asking for are socks or a new tie. He never wants to ask for anything new, and will use everything he has until it is worn out completely. Like his snow boots for instance…he has owned the Sorel Caribou for as long as I can remember, and although they held up during the entirety of my education I think this will be the year to replace them. Luckily the Caribou has only made minor improvements in the last few DECADES, so I know he will still like these winter classics for years to come.

caribou-for-dad

 

My sisters were easy. My youngest one is stylish, trendy, and youthful…the perfect candidate for an awesome pair of Madden Girl boots. The colored back zippers are one of the hottest trends out there right now, and the Madden Girl Cactuss has the cool red zipper along with studs lining the sides for even more style.cactuss-for-sister

My other sister is bubbly and has a sparkling personality, and loves to stay comfortable and warm (when we were kids she would surround the floor heat vent with a blanket and just sit there and soak in the heat). I think the UGG Australia Classic Short Sparkles may have been made just for her…warm shearling lining and colorful sequins on the outside? Just right!sparkles-for-sister

And with that, my family is taken care of! Except for stocking stuffers of course.  I think my family almost looks forward to my Smartwool Stocking Stuffers more than my shortbread cookies…almost.

smartwool-stocking-stuffers

 

Find gifts for everyone on your list using our Holiday Gift Guide, and let doddsshoe.com make holiday shopping easy!

holiday-gift-guide-banner-nex

 

Sneaker Wedges:
The Ultimate “Cool-Girl Kicks”

sneaker-wedge-hilightIt’s a wedge! It’s a sneaker! It’s the ultimate casual shoe, the sneaker-wedge! Thanks to this new trend, your fashionista instincts can follow you from casual Friday to weekend hang-outs. Hi-top sneakers have always had a cool retro vibe, but they’ve also been a bit of a sacrifice since you lose those leg-lengthening inches that come from wearing heels. Let’s face it, being boosted up on a pair of heels is basically the equivalent to instantly losing 5 pounds. Especially for those of us who weren’t blessed in the height department, forgoing our heels can be tough. Luckily, now you can have them both!

 

 

 

sneaker-wedge-kerr-beyonce-fanning

Miranda Kerr and Beyonce showing off their stylish mommy style and Dakota Fanning with a youthful take, all in trendy high-top sneaker wedges.

Celebs have eaten up this trend. Miranda Kerr and Beyonce both throw on a pair for some street-chic mommy style, while Dakota Fanning shows how youthful and versatile the shoes can be. Beyonce’s Isabel Marant pair can run upwards of $800…if that’s a little bit out of your price range, the Steve Madden Hilight ($95.95) and the Madden Girl  Hickorry ($54.95) are budget friendly (but just as fashionable!) alternatives.

sneaker-wedge-hickorry-hilight

The Madden Girl Hickorry and the Steve Madden Hilight are more budget friendly ways to rock this cool trend.

sneaker-wedge-skirtsThose celebs paired their wedges with skinny pants and loose uppers which is great for fall. Another way to wear them is with a flirty a-line dress (like I did back in the warmer months) or a cute mini. I wore my Steve Madden Olympiaa sneaker wedges for a look that had a bit of a girly-punk vibe.

 

 

If your style is a bit more sporty/tomboy-chic, the Puma Sky Wedge might be just what you’re looking for. Puma describes the reason before this style as their “duty to engineer a high-collared heel with all the comfort and kick-a**-tastic looks to make smooth moves.” They did just that, and added extra-bold colors and the signature Puma form stripe down the side for a look that is about as street-chic as you can get.

sneaker-wedge-puma-sky-wedge

We love the way Puma advertised their Sky Wedge sneakers…”Carefully designed to combat tall people who stand at the front.” So true!

If you’re still not convinced, maybe you’ll take the advice from fashion police queen Joan Rivers, who called them what all the “cool girls” were wearing. During a recent episode of “Fashion Police,” this trend was discussed on the segment “Gotta Have It/Make It Stop.” Joan, Guiliana, and Kelly all said “Gotta Have It,” and George only said no because he thought they would become TOO popular. But if worn right and with confidence, we here at doddsshoe.com say sneaker wedges are the ULTIMATE cool-girl kicks, and we’ve GOTTA HAVE THEM!

Color Blocking Guide for Spring/Summer 2012

Every year it seems when the temperature goes up, the color palette broadens. For Spring/Summer 2012, however, it seems color is making a bigger statement than usual. Hot neon tones and monochrome outfits have been seen all over the runway, but the trend that is overtaking them all is color blocking.

Pop stars Rihanna and Katy Perry embrace the color blocking trend from head to toe...hair included. Pippa Middleton takes a subtle approach to the trend.

Color blocking takes one or more solid, bold color to make an outfit really pop. You can take this trend literally from head to toe like Rihanna or Katy Perry, with bold colored hair to top the outfit off. Or you can start simple with just one pop of color surrounded by neutrals like Pippa Middleton, sporting a black skirt with a solid stripe of green, combined with a white shirt, and a neutral tote and peep-toe heels. The result is visually striking, but relatively simple by following a few simple suggestions:

1.  Refer to your handy-dandy color wheel. The key to color blocking is complimenting, not clashing. Complimentary colors are opposite each other on thewheel. For example, blue and orange are complimentary colors, and look impeccable on Victoria Beckham. It’s also nice to pair colors that are right next to each other like red and pink or red and purple. Emma Stone shows this off in an adorable peplum-adorned red and pink frock. Both Beckham and Stone finish off their looks with a classic and neutral colored pump.

Victoria Beckham and Emma Stone use neutral shoes to balance the bright colors.

The Steve Madden Traisie would be perfect to complete either of these looks!


2.   Don’t go overboard with a variety of textures. This trend plays off the minimalist movement, so don’t go mixing colored lace with animal prints…unless you are VERY confident in your eye for mixing and matching! In general, choose solid fabrics, no patterns, and un-fussy silhouettes.

The Duchess of Cambridge shows how a good pair of colored jeans easily transitions from casual to classy

 

 

3.   Invest in a pair of colored jeans. Bright colored jeans are SO big this year. They can be casual, combined with a matching pair of Converse sneakers, or throw on a blazer and some pumps and be ready for a more formal occasion. The Duchess of Cambridge, Kate Middleton, shows how versatile a pair of salmon skinny jeans can be by looking regal in the jeans and a blazer and pumps, then joins in some field hockey after switching to some sneakers and a hoody.

 

 

4.   Make the most of your accessories.  As many of these celebs have shown, adding a neutral shoe or handbag can help your look focused and put together. However, don’t be afraid to use a brightly colored shoe as PART of the color blocking. The Sofft Garde is a two-piece, peep-toe pump, that has color-blocking built in! Starting with the accessories is a good way to get a few key color blocking pieces in your wardrobe so you can see if you want to invest more in the trend or not.

Color Block with your shoes!

Color blocking can look good on all shapes by hiding parts you don’t like and emphasizing parts you love most.  It can be done with neutrals, jewel tones, or even neons. With a relatively keen eye for color, you can achieve high-fashion looks with minimal effort.  Give the color blocking trend a go, and don’t forget to finish off your outfit with a fabulous pair of shoes from www.doddsshoe.com!

Espadrilles: Roping their way into Spring 2012 fashions

As the sun starts shining more and more, it’s time to get your summer shoes out of the closet. There’s a good chance that one pair of those shoes is some sort of espadrille, be it wedge or be it flat, because espadrilles have been a staple in warm weather wardrobes for centuries. Yes, centuries. From humble beginnings 700 years ago, espadrilles have evolved from peasant footwear in the Pyrenees to essential items for Hollywood Golden Girls, to modern all-around leisure “shoes of the shore.”

Classic Hollywood stars like Audrey Hepburn and Grace Kelly brought espadrilles back to the fashion forefront.

Classic screen sirens like Audrey Hepburn and Grace Kelly brought espadrilles back in Hollywood’s Golden Era, bringing an easy elegance to the classic jute/rope wrapped shoe. Part of the appeal of these shoes is their versatility. Wedge styles can easily be paired with some cute shorts, a summer dress, or casual capris.

 

Style icon Jennifer Aniston shows just how versatile a pair of espadrille wedges can be.

Modern movie star and style icon Jennifer Aniston showcases all of these options, paired with an espadrille wedge from Stuart Weitzman. Get her look for (a lot) less with the Indigo by Clarks Sky Pocomo wedge. You’ll get the versatile ankle-wrap espadrille style at about a fraction of the cost, from a brand known for comfort.

the Indigo by Clarks Sky Pocomo wedge gives Jen Aniston's ankle wrap style at a more affordable price.

Kate Bosworth and Rachel Bilson look summer-ready in casual cool espadrille style.

For a more casual look, get back to the basics. In the 14thcentury, espadrilles were made with a cotton or canvas upper and a flexible sole made of rope. This style is still alive and kicking, as shown in the casual cool looks of Kate Bosworth and Rachel Bilson. You can achieve this casual elegance with the Blowfish Smara or the Fossil Elway Flat.

 

Blowfish Smara and Fossil Elway Flat espadrilles, available at doddsshoe.com

Kate Middleton shows off the elegance of espadrilles.

 

 

From casual to elegant, we look to Kate Middleton who pairs a flowy blue dress and blazer with an espadrille wedge with a patent leather upper. Sofft has a long line of dressier espadrilles for Spring 2012, all worthy of the Duchess of Cambridge.

 

 

 

 

Sofft Spring 2012 Espadrille Styles

Versatility and comfort are the keys to this spring favorite’s longevity. Wedge styles are a more comfortable and laid-back version of the classic pump which goes with just about anything, while the timeless flat style doesn’t show any signs of slowing down. If the style is good enough for the Hollywood elite, English royalty, and historical icons like Ernest Hemingway and Pablo Picasso, espadrilles are one style your spring wardrobe cannot be missing! Find the perfect style for you at doddsshoe.com.

Not just for sailors:
Nautical Style for Spring 2012

Nautical style has been a part of classic American style for years. Why? Maybe it elicits images of sunbathing on a yacht, sailing into the sunset with your beau, or maybe because the traditional styles are navy blue and white stripes with red and gold accents…doesn’t get much more patriotic than that! No matter why nautical style=classic Americana, it is simply an easy, timeless trend.

Blake Lively exudes nautical style in classic stripes and navy boat shoes.

Starlet and fashionista Blake Lively shows off the traditional nautical styles with a striped shirt, clean white pants, and some classic looking navy boat shoes. Let’s be honest, it’s the boat shoes that really give her look the undeniable nautical style. And the undeniable boat shoe specialist is Sperry Top Sider.

My version of nautical style is just as good as Blake's, right? Say yes :)

Today, I’m rocking a similar classic nautical look in my Sperry Top Sider Bluefish 2-Eye shoes in Navy/Deerskin. Paired with a tailored jacket and navy striped tank from H&M, I feel like I should be headed to the dock to board a lavish yacht…even though the reality is that there is still snow on the ground outside.

The classic maritime colors will probably never go out of style, but this spring the seafaring style is getting shaken up with pops of color and combinations of unexpected patterns. The juxtaposition between the classic style and surprising new hues/designs is just what you need to bring a modern twist to your Spring wardrobe.

 

A combination of different classics equals a fun and modern twist on all of them.

For Spring 2012, Sperry Top Sider has come out with cool new looks on one of their most popular shoes, the Angelfish. In one new look, they combine a classic houndstooth pattern with classic black patent leather in a classic boat shoe design, proving that classic + classic + classic = something totally new and modern! Or you can go glam with rich, metallic animal print leathers, like this Angelfish in Gold Snake Print .

Go glam with metallic snake skin leather

 

 

 

 

 

 

A great thing about Sperry Top Sider boat shoes is that they are not only fashionable, they are functional as well. The uppers are all made of stain and water resistant leathers so you don’t have to worry about a little wave ruining your shoes. Speaking of waves, the Wave-Siping™ design on the bottom of all their boat shoe styles makes it easy to grip any wet surface you may come across. The wave-like design opens when you flex your foot, releasing water and providing traction on slick surfaces. Don’t be afraid to get caught in the rain in these shoes!

Wave-Siping™ technology helps you grip wet surfaces with its water-releasing wave like grooves

Whether you’re at a resort or just wish you were, you don’t have to be a sailor to bring the ocean to you in these fresh new nautical styles for Spring 2012! Find them all right here at www.doddsshoe.com.

 

Shoe Show Season

Recently, I returned from FN Platform/Project in Las Vegas, NV where my senses were  overloaded with fantastic new colors, textures, and styles and got me excited about Fall 2012.

Platform

Yes, that may seem odd, but when buying for Dodds Shoe Company, we look 6 months in advance.  So, while the winter snow hasn’t even melted off the streets, we are already thinking about what the next big trends of Fall will be.  It is kind of fun to know in advance what colors are going to be the “hot hues” of the season.  Will boots be just as popular, or will another style of shoe hit the market?  And, what new brand will send us all in a frenzy, desperately trying to get the new “it” shoe on our feet?

Project

 

It’s at shoe shows where we pick up new lines for Dodds Shoe Company. For instance, last year we saw the excitement at the booth for TOMS Shoes and today we received our first shipment, and all of us could not be more excited!  Other recent acquisitions from these shows are Frye Boots and Alegria…both great additions to Dodds Shoe Company.

TOMS

Frye Harness Boot

Alegria Feliz

I’m almost sad to see the shoe show season coming to a close, but we will be happy for it to roll around again in August.  In the meantime, we will continue to provide the most current, fresh, and fun shoe styles for you to wear this spring and summer.  For the future, what lines would you like to see on www.doddsshoe.com?

To Be Minimal Or Not To Be Minimal

One of the great debates we have here at Dodds Shoe Company is the new trend in running shoes…minimal running shoes.  Maybe the first known shoe to dabble in this market was the Nike Free in 2005, allowing runners to increase foot strength by having less on their foot.

Born To Run

The Free sold well, but it was a book called “Born To Run” that really peaked the interest of runners with the introduction to barefoot running.  Vibram Five Fingers, or “those funny toes shoes” became an overnight sensation and had many runners rushing to their favorite running stores to buy a pair.

 

 

 

 

 

 

My Bikilas

Being that I like to run and am up for anything, I soon bought my first pair of Five Fingers. I definitely got a lot of strange looks and many people stopped to ask me what I was wearing, but I have enjoyed them.  I began running in them.  While difficult at first (the day after my first run, I thought I was going to die), I soon began to experience what the hype was all about.  Becoming more of a midfoot-to-forefoot striker vs. a heel striker has made me a more efficient runner and lighter on my feet.  That is a good thing.

Vibram Five Fingers lists the following as the “5 Reasons To Wear Or Train In VFF’s”

  1. Strengthens muscles in feet and lower legs.
  2. Improves range of motion in ankles, feet, and toes.
  3. Stimulates neural function.  Important to balance and agility.
  4. Eliminates heel lift to align the spine and improve posture.
  5. Allows the foot and body to move more naturally, which just feels good.

Not everyone likes the look of monkey feet, so New Balance and Merrell have teamed with VFF and have created their own barefoot shoes.  The New Balance Minimus and the Merrell Trail Glove/Pace Glove are great alternatives to the VFF.

So, here is where it gets interesting.  Many customers come to our store asking if this is good for you.  The most common question we hear is, “do these shoes have good arch support?”.  The theory behind barefoot running is to run in a more natural state with shorter, quicker strides that gives you better alignment.  The shoes do not have arch support, but will strengthen your foot to support itself.  I’ll let you decide for yourself if these shoes are right for you.  Personally, I like them and prefer to do all of my running and training in a minimal shoe.

Asics Gel Neo33

Asics Gel Neo33

Still not convinced?  Look at the Asics Gel Neo33, the

Brooks PureFlow

Brooks PureFlow

Brooks PureFlow, and the Saucony Kinvara. Here are 3 shoes that still provide some structure and cushioning while following the trend of a “less is more” shoe.

 

Saucony Kinvara

Saucony Kinvara

Be sure to visit https://www.doddsshoe.com/ to check out the latest in minimal running shoes.  In the meantime, get out and enjoy pounding the pavement.

 

Trend Watch:
Menswear for Women

Taking a break and getting inspiration from my Born shoes

It’s your classic story of “Boy Meets Girl.” Taking the classic styling of menswear and making it sleek, feminine, and cute. Menswear was a huge trend for Fall, and for good reason. The definitive tailoring, the strong lines; there’s something empowering about this trend! With clothes, getting the look right can be tricky. You don’t want to go TOO baggy, TOO slouchy, or TOO boyish. With shoes, however, it’s pretty much a safe bet.

The wing tip shoe has been a staple in men’s closets for years…centuries, actually. Known as “brogue” in the rest of the world, Americans adopted the name “wing-tip” by interpreting the perforated/stitching design on the toe as either a “W” or a bird taking flight. To be honest, women’s wingtips have been around for nearly as long as men’s, but were nearly impossible to tell apart—no fun.

These days, your favorite shoe companies are coming out with more ladylike and comfortable styles that can be worn with everything from light and airy dresses to skinny jeans to cropped pants to dressy shorts…to basically anything in your closet.

Born Arletta in Desert Natural

 

The Born Arletta was a huge hit for the Fall (and for my own personal closet).  For Spring, Born has come out with a lighter, very versatile color in the Desert Burnished leather. The velvet laces give a perfect touch of femininity, while the low profile upper allows delicate exposure for your upper foot and ankle. LOVE this style.

 

Actress Emma Watson pairs pink and black wingtips with a polka dot dress

 

 

While I am sporting this style with rolled skinny cargos today, fashionista Emma Watson shows the perfect example of how a pop of color can help a wingtip oxford pair perfectly with a Spring-ready dress.

 

 

 

 

The Fossil Savanna paired with an airy skirt and socks for a fun and flirty look

If you don’t want to totally delve into the wingtip look, a more subtle version is a cap toe  oxford pump. The Savana Lace Bootie from Fossil would go great with a pair of tall socks or tights as it starts to get warmer but isn’t quite summer weather.

 

 

 

 

 

Born made another hit on the menswear trend with this loafer inspired pump. A perfect example of a modern take on traditional style, the Born Nance has the look of a tassled loafer combined with a stacked heel and rich leather, bringing handsome sophistication to any look.

Born Nance Sauro Tan

Embrace this trend and look entirely chic and sophisticated with styles you can find at the right price on at Dodds Shoe Co.!