Holiday Heels

The hardest decision to make when I'm going on holiday is choosing the right shoes to take with me (I’m sure every woman at some point has been faced this dilema) especially if your activities during your holiday are varied. I still always end up taking 6 pairs irrespective of how much I ponder over it! On Saturday I will be flying out to India, part business part pleasure. Delhi will be the first stop to bid a final farwell to my late grandad, so for this part of the trip I will probably wear a pair of traditional indian footwear also known as Chapal (flip flops to you and I) or maybe even some converse depending on the terrain and weather. 

After Delhi we will be heading to Surat, known as the Diamond Capital, its the 8th largest City in India and extremely metropolitan with fashion really making an impact on their economy. (interesting fact: a staggering 92% of the worlds diamonds pass through Surat before being exported to other parts of world). So for this part of the holiday with temperatures around 30 degrees at this time of the year, I have taken my trusty wedged espadrilles, for me they are a hot holiday essential, especially for day wear as they are super comfortable and add that little bit of height which I love. (don't worry I have also packed some flat strappy sandals for when I’m fed up)

After Surat the next destination is Mumbai. Now I havent been to India in a very long time, but I’ve heard some amazing stories of how far Mumbai has come in 10 years which was the last time I was there. Its the fashion capital of India, and from what I have seen on various social media posts, I will quickly find my bearings in this beautiful newly developed city. So for this reason I have gone all out, I have taken a pair of my new favourite summer heels, an absolute steal from Zara, they are super comfy and have very quickly become a staple for the summer months. Their tribal print coordinate with a number of outfits I have packed and are just the ticket to to jazzing up an outfit for an evening meal too.

Zara - £39.99

I have also packed some flat espadrilles. Flats are always a must even for a heel lover like me, something quick and easy to slip on your feet for breakfast, short strolls and by the pool often give your feet a chance to rest between the heel wearing. The pair Im taking were looking slightly tired so I embellished them to bring them back to life.  I couldn't bare to throw them out as they are so easy to wear and match with lots of casual outfits and bikinis. (I have posted the tutorial for how I did this on

Go to diy:modista to find out just how quickly it was to revamp these espadrilles by embellishing them.

Now if that wasn't enough I have also decided to pack my very well travelled Jimmy Choo Dream Rope Tie Elaphe sandals, now I know your’re all screaming WHY?!!? but I have a good enough reason (I promise!) My generous and loving uncle and aunty, as a christmas present, gifted my whole family with staying at The Taj. Now the Taj is the creme de la creme of hotel experiences. The BBC recently filmed a 6 episode documentary looking at the intricasies of looking after such a prestigious hotel and after watching the first episode with my boyfriend this week I felt it was absolutely necessary to take them with me so I could wear them for dinners within the hotel (well thats what I tell myself). Below is the list (sigh! There's a list you guys are thinking!?!) of shoes I ended up taking with me.

Jimmy Choo - Dream Rope Tie Elaphe Sandal

Shoe List
Flat Espadrilles
Flip Flops (Chapal)
Strappy Sandals
Wedged Espadrilles
Tribal Print Sandal
Dream Elaphe Sandal

DIY Project

The Book Review

The Shoe Book - Assouline
Nancy MacDonell 

I was given this book as a leaving present from my old job and since, I have used it more than most of the other books on my book shelf (and there are alot of books on those shelves), so the secrets out - I love a good book, whether its a riveting novel or a good old coffee book. Assouline are well known publishers for their luxurious, graphically dynamic books on fashion, design culture and Life Style, so as soon as I unwrapped the shoe silhouette wrapping paper from the book I was grateful and impressed by how well my colleagues knew me.  Well designed books are my thing - I’m a perfectionist when it comes to page setups - I get a nervous twitch when I notice things aren't straight, in line or order - some might call it OCD (or CDO if I had it my way - ha!) but I reassure myself that its just one of my quirks. This book sits comfortably within the coffee book genre which is one reason why I love it, here are 5 more reasons:

Great inspiration for designing.

It’s in essence a picture book with great qoutes from Celebs, Footwear and Fashion Designers. (Whats not to like about that - everyone loves a good qoute to start their day right)

The front cover is extremely lux (sort of cushiony - I wouldn't expect anything less of Assouline) so it makes for a great present to a shoe fanatic and on that note reasonably priced.

Beautifully made and designed - The content is varied stretching between the first style of shoe designed to modern day shoes and sneakers including eras that influenced the footwear industry. (all makes for short interesting reads to relax with)

All the images are well referenced so you can have a little search online if you are particularly intrigued or curious about any of the shoes featured in the book.

So what are you waiting for? Grab that coffee and head to your nearest book store, or better still grab a copy and find your favourite reading nook.


Nancy Macdonell



Stockists UK
(a.k.a Maison Assouline - The first international flagship store - idyllic reading space)
Waterstones (selected stores)



Amazon (online) - £32
Waterstones (online) - £32

'Malikah' - Oscar Tiye

Much to my excitement, my sister purchased a pair of Oscar Tiye ‘Malikah’ heels in black suede (never felt more annoyed at myself for having bigger feet than her), so naturally they have been crowned Shoe of the Week. Now if you’re a shoe addict like me you have probably seen these shoes doing their rounds  on every social media outlet possible. I was instantly hooked when one of my good friends told me about the creative director Amina Muaddi (she is absolutely stunning and  practically a brand in herself) she is every bit the fashionista, her style is sophistcated and elegant which is why people have completely fallen for her eponymous brand Oscar Tiye. The Malikah heel is the brands ‘it’ shoe and its pretty obvious as to why. They are both sexy and sleek and represent every bit of the brands ethos.

Jordanian born, Muaddi has taken inspiration and influences from Egyptian history and culture which is how the brands name was derived. The logo, a simplistic scarab often associated as a lucky charm features on every shoe and the wings that wrap around the ankles are inspired by egyptian drawings, carvings and hieroglyphics. I bet you're thinking I wouldn't mind having a pair of those? Well feast your eyes on these; I have picked out my favourite styles from the 2014 range all with similar elements, which I'm sure you'll just love.

Fall Winter 2014 Minnie Sandal

Fall Winter 2014 - Amira Plateau

Spring Summer - Cleopatra Sandal

Spring Summer - Casandra Tall

Spring Summer - Zoe

Spring Summer - Jamila

Spring Summer 2014 - Petra


(I love her fashion sense and how she styles the shoes with different outfits)


Sexy and Sophisticated
Only F/W and S/S 2014 collections are available at the moment

£200 upwards (varies depending on which site you are purchasing from)

Stockists UK
Online (massive reduction on the Malikah Heels in Black and Yellow right now girls, definitely worth a check)  

Take your pick really - the Celebs are absolutely loving them, but a few of my faves have to be Zoe Saldana, Sarah Rafferty (Donna from Suits - Eeekkk!), Heidi Klum and big time blogger Aime Song.

The Shoe Review

C a m i l l a    E l p h i c k

Elphick's shoes (for me) sit firmly between the quirk of Sophia Webster with very similar hues of pastel colours and the inspiration and influences of Charlotte Olympia which is quite honestly, right up my street. Elphick was mentored and taught by the best while interning and working with the likes of Nicholas Kirkwood, Donna Karan, Paul Andrew and Topshop to name a few. 

So with all of that experience, what better than creating your own eponymous shoe label? launching with her collection for Spring Summer 2015 ‘You got the Luck’ you can see why her debut and graduate collection gained so much recognition and praise. 12 styles are available all inspired by, you guessed it - Luck, all with their own distinctive and catchy names. Below are some of my favourites which are just what you need to brighten up the doom and gloom weather London has had for the last few days. Be aware - they may leaving you felling happy and nostalgic both at the same time!

'Pez Shoe' - (unable to find a stockist for this)

'Clover Heels' - £445 on Avenue 32

'Gold Dust' - £340 at Grazia Shop

'Lucky 7' - £495 on Avenue 32

'Royal Flush'- £460 on Avenue 32

12 Styles available

£250 upwards


Designer - Josh Olan 

I came across Josh Olan on Instagram, and you can see why his illustrations caught my eye. The Londoner has gained a great following from his fashion illustrations, not limiting himself to drawings of clothes and fashion.  His instagram alone screams character, clean lines and a contrasting mix of white and black imagery and inspiration, much like his illustrations. I was particularly interested in the footwear concepts Olan has designed that are all drawn from the most basic of designing tools - the pencil. Now you’re probably thinking how limiting? but Olan's drawings are so intricately illustrated that the use of any other medium is just not needed; you can instantly gain a sense of materiality just from the shading and pencil strokes. I personally find drawing with a pencil daunting (unless I'm using a ruler which is probably out of habit from studying architecture) and I’m sure thats the same for many of us to, but Olan seems to show great control and talent. I look forward to seeing lots more from him, so for now I'm going to leave you with a few a of my favourite illustrations which you can also see on his his Instagram.


Shoe of the Week

‘Mojito’ - Julian Hakes

When architects release a conceptual (and realised) footwear design, I know I’m in for a treat. After my visit to the Killer Heels Exhibition in NYC one particular gallery discussed the strong relationship between architects and footwear design which resonated with me. Architects, I have come to realise are always searching for the next innovative method of reproducing a conventional object but using ergonomics and design as a way to lead and inform the design process.

Julian Hakes has done just that. His ‘Mojito’ shoe leads by example, he went about designing footwear using an architects head, analysing the stresspoints on a shoe and using that as his basis of this design. Now to look at, the shoe looks like a beautifully sculpted piece of art work thats aesthetically pleasing on the eye, but for me the genius part is that this design wraps aound the foot without any sign of the footplate giving the illusion of a light and organic shape. For me this design sits right in the middle of the age old question; form over funtion, or function over form? It functions just as well as any other type of footwear but has completly turned the conventional design of a shoe on its head.

It has featured in lots of press material in the last few months, and of recent they have been cropping up on a number of fashion blogs. I think the design deserves every bit of praise it has coming its way, I’m looking forward to seeing how they play out in the world of fashion and how stylists and bloggers pair them up in everyday fashion which is exactly what they were made for.

Personal favourites:

Mojito - Bronze and Bronze £159.99

Mojito - Purple and Nude £174.99

Mojito - Electric Blue and Pewter £174.99

A number of colours to choose from (check the website for choices)

£135 upwards

Stockists UK


Liam Fahy

I've always been fascinated by the fact that some of the best desingers in the fashion industry, are men. I often think its because they have an eye for knowing what looks good on women, or should I say sexy on women? I only ever feel confident in my heels, which is why I wear them almost everywhere I go regardless of what I'm doing (though you’d definitely see me doing the food shopping in flats)

So as you can imagine when I came across Liam Fahy I was suitably impressed by his sexy range of heels. The classic and luxurious styles make his shoes super wearable yet adaptable ( I tend to always love classic style pumps - the best way to match a number of outfits and stay trendy). Fahy's shoes are limited edition designs and are hand made by some of the best italian (obviously) artisans - I would expect anything less.

I always wonder what influences and inspires designers, what’s their background? where do they get their individual style, how did they get into the footwear industry? was it planned or something they fell into? With Fahy I think its a mixture of both, his upbringing and his interest in art and physchology which he studied as a student in Africa. He decided to pursue his creativity by enrolling at DeMonfort University studying footwear where he was able to hone in on his shoe designing skills and shortly after, his eponymous luxury brand ‘Liam Fahy’ was established in 2011.

Below are some of my favourite picks from his spring summer collection ‘Summer Rain’ which is available online at the moment, along with his Noir range and most importantly the sale section because who doesn't like a sale?

'Maribel' - Black Suede, 105mm, £385

'Fleur' - Red Elbamat, 105mm, £499.16

'Alys' - Navy Canvas and Raffia, 115mm, £499.16

'Brigitte' - Red Watersnake Upper, 105mm, £892.44

22 Styles available in the Noir range
26 Styles in the Summer Rain range
Classic styles, clean cut monochrome colours with accents of red tones.

£350 upwards

Stockists UK
Online on the website