And now for something a bit different! I love historical shoes, so I wanted to do a post about them!
When I joined the SCA back in 2008, I planned to just buy all my costumes and other medieval gear as I never thought I'd be interested in doing any of it myself- I really like to shop for this kind of stuff. That means that I spent a fair bit of money looking for shoes that were "historical-esque", and would be close enough to pass muster, but not bother with the real deal.
We hear it all the time in the SCA- "it's too expensive for period shoes" or "these mary janes or black Merrells are close enough". I now tell everyone who asks me about shoes- it's worth the investment for the real thing. I easily spent over $100 buying several pairs of shoes over the course of maybe a year and a half when I first started. Now, I spend about $60-80 per pair on my period shoes. They will last you much longer, be more durable and easy to repair or clean up, and of course most importantly, make your whole outfit look more historical.
What about comfort, you might ask? Well, the insoles of historical shoes to tend to be harder than modern shoes. I add cheap little insoles right on top of the original ones to soften my steps, plus I often stuff a bit of pillow fluffing into the toes of my shoes to cushion my toes (and keep them warmer!)- it also helps keep the ends of the shoes nicely shaped, as the main three pairs I wear have slightly longer front ends than our modern shoes.
How about some pictures? They're in order of most recent purchases to what I started with.