CUSTOM MADE SHOES!!
Ever dreamt of having the perfect pair of shoes, that were just so, the way you want them, in the colour, fabric and details of your desire? Shoes of Prey do them. They're a new business owned by a friend of a friend, so I knew they were legit and promptly ordered a pair.
The Design process is the most fun. I spent about 2 hours playing around with all the different heels, backs, toes, etc.. putting together a ton of various designs. The only problem is having to decide :P It would have been even more powerful (and easier to envision the real thing) if the designer was like Zazzle.com's version (their shoe designer is amazing), but considering it's a new site, the Designer still did it's job.
After much deliberation, I finally decided on my pair and checked out. And thus began the painful wait :P I guess the only downside to custom made shoes is the fact that they're individually made, so it takes around 4 weeks. I can't tell you how many times I accessed the "Status" page - literally twice a day, every day, for those 4 weeks. Disappointingly, all it ever said was "In Progress". A suggestion would be to keep the buyer really involved - after all, women really love the fantasy of shopping. Perhaps status updates like Order Passed to Warehouse, Snakeskin sourced, Base of heel completed, etc etc, would have made it a lot more exciting and would've made me feel like part of the process. Even better if the page was also updated with photos of the shoe being worked on in the workshop. With just "In Progress", it did feel like I was ordering from any other online store, instead of a bespoke one.
Anyway, after it was made, I was sent a photo of the shoes via email, which I thought was a brilliant touch. Really made me super excited to see them for real, and ever the more eager to get them! They arrived within a few days in a plain lime green box. I think they should come in a luxe black box, tied with a plush blood red velvet ribbon. I don't know why, but the name Shoes of Prey and those colours/textures just seem to fit, and would make it seem like opening a couture present :P
Inside were nestled my shoes, wrapped carefully in crepe. They'd also included various shoe inserts for me to customize further, which was a wonderful touch. But the SHOES. Oh... my!!! They were DIVINE. Amazingly, more beautiful than I'd imagined. The snakeskin simply shimmers - a stunning blend of turquoise, black and gold. The shoes had fantastic detail, every stitch in place and perfectly hand-made.
I ordered a US sz35.5 and it was a perfect fit. They feel amazing on, and my feet didn't ache at all after wearing 'em around the office all day (granted, it's not like a full day's shopping on my feet, I haven't tried that out yet!). Plus, 3 people commented on them, without me telling them I was wearing new shoes :)
Shoes of Prey ship worldwide and are very reasonably priced. I can't say again how fun it is playing around in the Designer and creating that perfect shoe. Try it out! Tell 'em I sent you and you'll get a free cookie*.
* cookie may or may not be imaginary
You can check out their Gallery to get some inspiration
Then it's design-my-own-shoe time!!
My shoes arrive with a photo of them (to stick on the shoebox for easy identification)
and a sweet hand-written letter
Some swatches were included. That silver snakeskin one is calling my name!
Here's my pair of beauties :)
A closeup of the snakeskin
A perfect fit