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Posted at 8:22 AM ET, 04/13/2005

A Step Down


Maybe it's just me, but I have spent the last two weekends in search of shoes and have found the selection and quality sorely lacking. I covered a lot of territory, including DSW, Nine West, Kenneth Cole, Coach, Cole Haan, Hecht's and Nordstrom. (The last stop was particularly disappointing because the Seattle-based chain started out in the shoe biz and normally gets kudos for its huge selection of styles and prices.) I also find it practically impossible to find narrow shoes, and when I ask salespeople about it, they look at me as if I'm from Mars. Anybody else having a hard time?

-- Janet

By  | April 13, 2005; 8:22 AM ET
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The largest shoe store ever is Nordstrom's online. Because I have wide feet, I often have a hard time finding shoes. Nordstrom's online stocks a lot of wide (and narrow) shoes. Check it out! (PS--I don't work for Nordstrom, I swear.)

Posted by: Eva | April 13, 2005 10:22 AM | Report abuse

I, too, was disappointed with my last trip to DSW. has a great shoe collection and you can send the shoes back with a prepaid label if they don't fit. Not as much fun as browsing for shoes, but a huge selection.

Posted by: Tara | April 13, 2005 10:43 AM | Report abuse

I have the completely opposite problem! I have 10-wide feet and bad ankles, so I can never find shoes with a low (and thick!) enough heel that fit my feet. I've taken to ordering through online catalogs (Maryland Square has so far been my favorite), but if you need shoes RIGHTNOW, that's not much help. Ah, to be an average!

Posted by: RJ | April 13, 2005 11:36 AM | Report abuse

For some reason, i always seem to find fun & funky shoes at Payless. Perhaps you're looking for something of higher quality, but I'm a fan mainly because I can afford to buy several pairs a season, keep up with the trends, and can generally destroy them (at the bar, etc) without much remorse.

Posted by: holly | April 13, 2005 12:34 PM | Report abuse

i'm with holly! i tend to get more compliments with my payless shoes too.

Posted by: naomi | April 13, 2005 12:54 PM | Report abuse

Try finding wide shoes. Near impossible, especially at DSW.

Posted by: Christina | April 13, 2005 1:03 PM | Report abuse

I had a hard time finding good Mexican food, too. I went to Chevey's, Chili's, and even Don Pablos'! What is this world coming to?!?!

Posted by: Here's a Hint | April 13, 2005 1:06 PM | Report abuse

I've never been able to find decent shoes. Shoe shopping always ends with me going home in tears. Nordstrom? HAH!! IF they have my size, it's only in very expensive pumps. I want boots. I want COOOOOL shoes.

10D isn't that odd, but no one carries it. And if one more shoe sales-twit tells me "Try the mediums. Really, they run wide," I may have to make them eat a pair of shoes.

Posted by: Sarah | April 13, 2005 1:09 PM | Report abuse

This blog has officially jumped the shark.

Posted by: boring..... | April 13, 2005 2:02 PM | Report abuse

Like oh my God! I so have shoe shopping issues too, I thought I was the only one out there! Like, shoes are the most important thing in my life. This blog so rocks!

Posted by: Shoelover | April 13, 2005 3:52 PM | Report abuse

TOO many chains! Try Sassanova, Real Women Wear Red, Shake Your Booty, Shoefly, Betsy Fisher

Posted by: tmgordon | April 13, 2005 4:20 PM | Report abuse

Try the Off Fifth or the Nordstrom Rack. Both carry a lot of narrows and other off sizes.

Posted by: mmo1010 | April 13, 2005 4:55 PM | Report abuse

I spent many miserable hours looking for comfortable, presentable work shoes that I could also walk to the metro in without my feet bleeding - I went to Aerosoles, 9 West, all of the Comfort Shoe stores at Dupont Circle, Ecco, and DSW, before finally giving up and ordering from It seemed like a terrible idea, but I got two pairs of shoes (figured I'd send one back) and I loved them both. So now I have two pairs of shoes for work. And I'm happy.

Posted by: Helen | April 13, 2005 5:03 PM | Report abuse

Ditto to tmgordon's comment. I got great sandals at Shake Your Booty last summer.

Posted by: Cin | April 13, 2005 5:48 PM | Report abuse

for narrow and wide shoes, you should try Marmi's. They're in Tyson's Corners. They specifically carry a range of shoes from AAA to the wide size. Unfortunately, the brand I love most still doesn't fit my wide feet correctly, but at least they carry a selection.

Posted by: K | April 14, 2005 8:57 AM | Report abuse

I usually try to shop on line for shoes... my favorite website is for the high end shoes (Prada, YSL etc) just a little past their season. You have time to return if unworn. In a pinch? Try the stores in Georgetown - Banana Republic and J Crew have had some good seasons as of late. Zara also has cute shoes usually... can't help too much with the size problem. Sorry!

Posted by: Marge | April 14, 2005 1:31 PM | Report abuse

Is this a blog about shopping or going out?

Posted by: Shoes? | April 14, 2005 3:57 PM | Report abuse

Hey, in tight budget months, shoe shopping IS going out.

For those looking for shoes: Try Off Broadway at Seven Corners in Falls Church. The selection prices are great and the selection - for wide or narrow - is good, too. I know it's a chain, but I've had great luck there.

Posted by: ShoeLover2 | April 14, 2005 4:31 PM | Report abuse

I was shocked at the selection myself. Everything has huge flowers or random funky things attached to them. Where are all the normal shoes??

Posted by: JenJungle | April 14, 2005 4:36 PM | Report abuse

I just found a great pair of Stuart Weitzman stilletos at Nordy's (they come in black, turquoise, red, bone and yellow i think) .... the salesman automatically brought me a half a size higher than my usual size b/c they run small and narrow.

Posted by: shopper | April 14, 2005 5:18 PM | Report abuse

My fave website for online footwear shopping at the moment is

It features the products of alongside those of

It's not quite what you might call 'comparison shopping' but it's easier than jumping backwards and forwards between sites to get the best deal.

Posted by: Pete | April 30, 2005 5:58 AM | Report abuse

Great site and great information.


Posted by: Anonymous | May 15, 2005 10:52 PM | Report abuse

They have lots of cool styles in many sizes. I ordered from them recently and was very impressed with their fashion tips, service, and shoe selection.

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Patrick Loweri

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Posted by: Patrick Loweri | February 11, 2006 7:05 AM | Report abuse

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