4th of July:
Find the perfect BBQ shoes

“No taxation without representation!” That was the battle cry of the American colonies while fighting for independence from England. These days, our 4th of July cries are more like “We’re out of brats, someone go to the store!” America’s independence is a time for celebration, fireworks displays, and good old fashioned BBQ’s. When spending time outside this summer, everyone wants to be comfortable and look good. During the 4th of July, what better way to show your pride in the U.S. of A than by sporting red, white, and blue from head to toe?

REDS:

Red shoes have been a closet staple ever since Dorothy trekked across Oz in those ruby red slippers. Not everyone can pull off a pair of glittery pumps like Dorothy can, but red patent leather heels have a place in every girl’s wardrobe. The Red Patent Sofft Ramona is a closet staple. American Sweetheart Reese Witherspoon shows off an adorable 4th-of-July-ready look in her latest movie “This Means War:” a cute navy sundress paired with some red patent leather heels.

In “This Means War,” Reese Witherspoon sports a navy sundress with red patent heels: a perfectly patriotic and adorable look! Get the look with the Sofft Ramona.

For those of you looking for a more classic BBQ look, try the TOMS University Classic in Red. This shoe has a summery espadrille sole, and a breathable fabric upper, perfect for hanging out on warm days.

 

Another cool, all-American classic summer look is the Converse All Star sneaker. Lauren Conrad sports a red pair with jeans, a white tee, and blue and red jackets. Perfect for patriotic summer travel!

BLUES:

Elvis may have made blue suede shoes a huge trend, but just like blue jeans, blue and navy shoes can complete any outfit with ease. From baby blues to navy blues, complete any outfit with a cool blue pair of shoes.

The Sperry Top Sider Angelfish, Born Sitton, and Dansko Veda show blue is cool in all shades.

WHITES:

4th of July and summer BBQ’s are the perfect times to wear white. After Memorial Day and before Labor Day (although that’s not necessarily a “rule” anymore), whites give a bright and summery vibe.

Be bright in white with the Born Yancy, the Sofft Spezia, and the Wolky Liana.

SURPRISE: Bottle Opener on the bottom of the Reef Fanning.

For the men out there who don’t like to color code to the holidays, we’ve got the perfect BBQ shoe for you too. The Reef Fanning is as comfortable as it is good looking, and any guy who wears it will be a BBQ crowd pleaser: the sole has a built in bottle opener, so the good times can keep flowing until the fireworks start.

Enjoy the BBQ weather in style with a little bit of help from all of us here at www.doddsshoe.com.

Kids Summer Shoes: Kid and Parent Friendly Styles

Summer is a time for our little ones to get out and enjoy being a kid. With trips to the park and adventures to the zoo, it is important that our kids have the perfect summer shoe. Children’s shoes need to be comfortable, safe, and obviously fun to wear. It seems like the kids styles we are getting in are getting more and more adorable with each summer season.

Finding the perfect summer kids shoe is really pretty easy. First, look for a shoe that will let their feet breath. Kids make the most out of summer, meaning they put 110% into activities—even if it’s 110 degrees outside. To keep them from overheating, breathability is a must. Give those little piggies some air! Straps and a secure fit are also key things to think about, so they don’t run right out of their shoes. Also, make sure to pay attention to the accessibility of the shoe, because kids don’t like to waste time putting on their shoes when they could be enjoying the great outdoors.

The kids Keen Newport H2 is the perfect kids summer shoe: waterproof, sturdy, securely fit, and adorable on their tiny little feet!

One of our favorite shoes that encompass all the above tips is the Newport H2 from Keen. This is a great summer shoe because it has a closed toe to protect your child when they play, but it is still an open sandal allowing for fantastic air flow.  The Newport H2 has both an ankle strap and bungee laces that support the ankle and allow for a custom fit feeling. Kids are a fan of the Newport H2 because of the fun colors it comes in, and parents are a fan because of the fantastic quality Keen provides. Children usually grow out of the shoe before they wear it out…making it a hand-me-down shoe younger siblings can’t wait to have!

Brad and Angelina help out the kids they can’t adopt by getting TOMS Shoes for the kids they have–One for One!

For a more casual, everyday shoe, kids are going gaga for lightweight and colorful slip-ons like Toms Shoes and Bobs by Skechers—and we are too. These adorable shoes super summer friendly and easy to wear: pair them with a cute summer dress or shorts and a t-shirt and you and your kids are ready to go. We’ve even got women’s styles to match or compliment the kids TOMS Shoes…how cute is that? In addition, with every pair of TOMS or Bobs sold, a less fortunate child will get a pair of needed footwear.

Finally, Children and parents love the Speed for kids by Vibram Five Fingers. “Those crazy toe shoes” are now for kids. This kid-friendly shoe is perfect for any outdoor adventure. As a child my parents were always mad that I was outside with no shoes on. Now, lucky kids can run around outside feeling barefoot, while having the foot protection parents are looking for.  The Speed specifically has a traditional lacing system making them easy to put on and take off.  And the biggest parent-friendly feature? They are machine washable! Bring on those mud puddles!

Kids Vibram Five Fingers: It’s like being barefoot, only better.

So go on, let your children enjoy being kids this summer. With a vast selection of cool kids shoes from doddsshoe.com, finding the perfect shoe to fit both you and your children’s needs will be easy breezy.

 

 

Stay Cool in the Rising Summer Heat!

“Stay Cool” isn’t just an old 70’s term.  With temperatures reaching record highs in the Spring, we can expect this summer to be a scorcher. It’s time to start thinking about ways to stay comfortable and cool in your shoes.  While flip flops and sandals are an obvious choice when it comes to keeping our feet cool and happy, many of us have jobs and hobbies requiring something more. Safety toe boots, dress shoes, hiking boots, and walking shoes are often a necessary part of our daily lives, and the wrong choice of shoes can make the summer heat unbearable. Fortunately, we have some helpful tips to keeping your feet cool and dry:

  1. Alternate shoes.  Switching out the shoes you wear at least every other day is

    Alternating between different pairs of shoes every day helps keep feet cool and comfortable, while eliminating odor.

    the best way to keep your feet cool and dry.  This may sound like a clever sales pitch to sell two pair of shoes, but we’ve got science to back it up! Consider this:  The average pair of feet have 250,000 sweat glands, and these glands can produce up to 8 ounces of water every day! That’s as much as a recommended average glass of water–thirsty? Most of this moisture is absorbed into your shoes, and when you take your shoes off and throw them in the closet, they don’t have time to completely dry out before wearing them again the next morning. Putting your foot in a wet shoe first thing in the morning is a recipe for discomfort. Built up moisture can make shoes deteriorate faster, and the moist environment also contributes to intensified shoe and foot odor. Alternating shoes allows the footwear to dry completely, thus creating a more comfortable (and less smelly) environment. It also helps your footwear last longer, saving you money in the long run! If you can’t alternate your shoes every other day, you can take the insoles out at the end of the day to help the shoes dry faster.

  2. Ventilate.  Many of today’s modern shoes designs allow air to pass through the shoes to keep feet dry. Air movement is key to keeping you cool and dry, so look for

    Mesh panels lend to breathability, helping the Merrell Moab Ventilator live up to its name.

    shoes with key words like “ventilate,” “breathability,” and “air mesh.”  For example, the Merrell Moab Ventilator has lots of mesh in the upper to allow your foot to breathe. Ventilation is great in the summer, but remember that high ventilation usually means that you’ll get wet faster in the rain or dewy grass.  Fortunately, if your ventilated shoes get wet, they will typically dry faster too.

  3. Moisture wicking materials.  For those of you with jobs requiring a more professional look, some companies have developed moisture wicking technology to add to casual or dress styles. There’s a plethora of moisture wicking materials built in to shoes today.  Materials like Cambrelle and Climasphere are specifically designed for temperature and moisture regulation.  This isn’t just built in to work boots, but dress shoes too. Take the men’s Ecco Atlanta for example. Ecco’s  Comfort Fibre system is on the bottom of their removable leather insoles and is designed to pull moisture away from the foot.  This not only helps keep your feet dry, but also helps the shoes dry faster.  Clarks has developed the Unstructured Line of shoes, featuring the company’s Air Circulation System (ACS). Considered “fresh air for your feet,” ACS increases airflow with intake vents built into the sole which bring in fresh air, and exhaust vents throughout the shoe to expel moist, warm air. The result? Better airflow, and a comfortable and dry foot environment!

    The Clarks Unstructured Line features ACS (Air Circulation System), resulting in better airflow for your feet.

  4. Less is better (sometimes).  Many shoe companies tout the fact that their waterproof materials are breathable.  We agree that most of them are, but the more layers you put in a shoe, the more they retain heat. If they are keeping out water, they are more likely to keep in heat. We recommend avoiding waterproof membranes if your goal is to stay cool.  If you must have a waterproof shoe or boot, you should purchase one with a breathable membrane (like Gore-Tex), but try to find a light weight one that has some ventilation like the waterproof version of the Merrell Moab Ventilator.

If you follow these tips, you should find much more comfort in those dog days of summer. So get out and enjoy the heat with the help from all of us at doddsshoe.com!

Father’s Day 2012:
Your shoe gift guide

As the weather gets warmer, it’s time to break out the grills and golf clubs…and what better time to honor our fathers for the great men that they are and for the important roles that they play in our lives.

Father’s Day was first celebrated in June of 1910 when a woman named Sonora Smart Dodd (no relation) wanted to recognize her father for the selfless way that he raised his 6 children as a widower. Father’s Day became officially recognized in 1972. Father’s Day 2012 marks 40 years of celebrating just how important dad’s are in our lives.

Important, yes…but if your dad is anything like mine, he may be a little bit hard to shop for. Have no fear: at Dodds Shoe Company we have great gift options for all types of Dads.  

 

 

Maybe your dad loves to run.  Matthew McConaughey is a busy dad that is often seen running on the streets and the beach. Get your Dad out in McConaughey style in shoes like the Nike Air Pegasus or the Asics GT-2170.

 

 

Is your dad a golfer?  Take a cue from fan-favorite, professional Fred Couples, and have your dad head to the course looking like a pro in a pair of Ecco Golf Street Premiers.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

If fishing, hiking, and just spending time with the kids is what your dad enjoys the most, a pair of sandals that is ready for all sorts of summer fun is just what he needs.  The Keen Newport H2 would be a perfect gift: great in the water, on land, in a boat, on the trail…basically a great all around outdoor shoe.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Or, maybe your dad likes to enjoy the outdoors by lighting up the grill and doing a little barbecuing.  The New Balance 623 is a great shoe for grilling and walking around town.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We are so happy to be able to celebrate all types of dad’s this year.  The soccer coaches, wood shop mentors, goof-offs; our heroes. To all the great Dad’s out there, thank you for all you do from all of us at Dodds!

 

 

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!

One Day Without Shoes 2012

"You work at a shoe store...why aren't you wearing shoes?" One Day Without Shoes 2012

After working at Dodds Shoe Co. for almost 6 years, I’ve got a lot of shoes. A LOT. But today, I’m not using a single pair. Why? We are participating in this year’s “One Day Without Shoes” campaign, to raise awareness about the hardships children who are forced to go without shoes have to endure every day. Now, I have never been one to overlook the importance of shoes, but while researching what to say when people ask me “why no shoes,” I learned they are much more important than relieving back and knee pain or completing outfits.

According to onedaywithoutshoes.com, shoes can help protect against injury, and in combination with basic hygiene and sanitation, help prevent disease and soil-transmitted infections.  In a case study done in the Philippines, 30,000 people live on one landfill, living with exposure to broken glass, syringes, and debris. In Kenya, nearly 2 million children are infected by burrowing fleas called jiggers, causing infections. All across the world, people are affected by hookworm, podoconiosis, and other hazards associated with living without shoes.

One of our brands, TOMS shoes, developed the “One Day Without Shoes” campaign to have —in founder Blake Mycoskie’s words—“one day where we focus 100% on the need.”  Through the one-for-one program, for each pair purchased TOMS donates a pair of new shoes to a child in need. Since 2009, the company has also united with Partners in Health, which has not only distributed shoes to impoverished families, the organization also builds hospitals and health clinics, while providing health outreach staff and education. By providing multiple layers of health care such as access to hospitals, vaccinations, medication, food, shelter, and yes, even shoes, PIH addresses the broad definition of health care. New shoes may be just one layer of the process of health care, not even the biggest layer; but they are a barrier of protection and a source of excitement. And when it comes to health care, all layers are important.

I love my shoes, but I will gladly forego my heels today (although I feel rather short!) to raise awareness about this movement and get just a small taste of what it’s like to go without shoes.

 

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.