Dance Shoes: Aris Allen

I recently ordered some new shoes from Aris Allen and I freaking love them. I just got the brown high heels and they are super comfortable. How many pairs do you own? Click on the images to go check the shoes out on the website!





Baltimore Based Swing Dance Footwear Company Releases New Line of Women’s Dance Shoes for Spring 2012 Season

Baltimore, MD – (March 7, 2012) Due to overwhelming demand, local swing dance company Aris Allen has added more than 14 new styles of women’s shoes to its varied line of internationally recognized footwear.

“Our loyal customers have been champing at the bit as we worked to release an even wider variety of vintage-inspired shoes for today’s swing dance enthusiast” states Gay Santelmann, product developer and CEO.

The new assortment of shoes includes styles such as the 1940s 3-Buckle Dance Shoe, as well as a low heeled late-1950’s Shoe with Ankle Strap. Aris Allen has also developed some of its customer favorites in several new color combinations that fit in well with this season’s upcoming trends.

Response from swing dancers all over North America, as well as international customers in several countries including France, Germany, Australia, Italy, and the UK has been more than favorable.

Alongside the array of new shoes, Aris Allen has made room for gently worn footwear at its retail location in Curtis Bay, MD – many of which have been showcased by celebrities and featured on tv series such as Dancing with the Stars. Many styles from past seasons can be found for up to 70% off, along with an assortment of swing dance apparel.

In its efforts to encourage young Baltimore-area dancers interested in swing, Lindy Hop, Balboa and Charleston, Aris Allen is also offering free pairs of shoes to customers touting a student ID when visiting the store.

About Aris Allen:
Founded in 2004, Aris Allen features the best in shoes, clothes and accessories for dancers who practice Lindy Hop, Jitterbug, Balboa, Charleston, Boogie Woogie, Collegiate and Varsity Shag, Blues, West Coast, 6-count, 4-count (you name it), any and all forms of swing dancing! Visit Aris Allen’s retail site at for more information.


Shoes at Ruche

I would looooooove to have all of these shoes. Click on the pictures to be redirected to the site where you can buy them. 😀

Chelsea Crew Nova T-Strap Heels In Red

Nik Nak Heels By Chelsea Crew In Green

All Dressed Up T-Strap Heels By Seychelles

Bronx Heat Of Nite Lace Up Flat

Pembrokeshire Floral Heels In Brown

Chelsea Crew Pauline Suede Pump In Gray

To be honest, I can see Alice Mei wearing most of these shoes 😀 Perhaps one day some of them will end up in my closet!

Bone Jitterbug Jane Heeled Sandals

Some fun, new fabulous shoes I stumbled upon. Good for balboa?

These fabulous retro 1940’s inspired pumps are reminiscent of the shoes women used to wear to USO dance halls during World War II. Made of bone (antique ivory) colored faux-leather, they feature a sling-back shape, darling cut-out details, maryjane style T-straps, a platform sole, and thick 3.25″ heels (2.75″ if you exclude the 1/2″ platform sole). We can’t imagine any retro swing kitten’s wardrobe would be complete without these ♥

Here they are in teal and black.

Available in full sizes only.

1930s Black Faux Lace Up Oxford Shoes Mint!

Aren’t these fabulous!! I think my friend Nikki Marvin needs them. Who else has small feet in the lindy community?

Customer service is outstanding. If you have any questions, email them and they’ll get back to you in a jiff! I was hoping to buy these, but sigh, they aren’t in my size.

1930s Black Faux Lace Up Oxford Shoes

These are a find – 1930s leather faux oxfords in mint condition. They have a elastic gussets on each side to allow the wearer to slip them on. Love the perforated decoration on the vamp and the decorative leather ‘ties’.

Labels: none

Size:  US 5
Width: 2 5/8”
Length: 8 5/8”
Heel: 2 ¾”

Condition: Mint and unworn. We have conditioned the leather, but it is still a bit stiff as would be expected form shoes that were never broken in.

Price: $48

Buy them Here at Past Perfect Vintage!

Ridiculous Shoes

I was stumbling around the internet and I found some ridiculous shoes. Soooooooo ridiculous, in fact, that I had to share! Some of them are still available, and some of them aren’t.


Gold ‘Priscilla’ sandals by Topshop Boutique


Irregular Choice ‘Bow Up’ flat sandals with wings on the heels

Faith ‘Cing’ point-toed platform court shoes

Harumi Watanabe sequin and glitter pumps

Marc Jacobs heart platform sandals

Gian Marco Lorenzi rhinestone embellished platform mules

10 Travel Tips – from Outblush

I read this out Outblush and I couldn’t have written this any better. I’ve added bits and pieces after each section. Read and enjoy!

1. Buy wisely: Be a savvy consumer when it comes to flying the not-so-friendly skies. Tuesdays are the cheapest day to buy – the airlines and discount sites publish new deals on Monday and re-publish ever lower prices on Tuesday in an effort to beat out competitors. You might also want to try saving a search in sites like or Farecast and just wait for the lowest price to come to you.

*I use Kayak religiously. I like how I can control my search parameters (multiple airports, airlines, alliances, price, and layover time) and how easy it is to send the flights I like to organizers or friends.

2. Try to get a on a flight that leaves in the morning or afternoon: We know those last flight of the day tickets are appealing because you can leave right after exams or squeeze in one more full day of work, but with winter weather and over-booked flights conspiring against you there’s a good chance of delays and cancellations.

*Try not to go through Chicago in the winter. It’s an amateur mistake. If you absolutely must, try to find some lindy hopping friends that you can crash with.

3.Travel light: Avoid checking your bag if you can. Leave you bumble and bumble behind and ship your gifts. Not only does it save time, but if your flight is canceled and they have to redirect your luggage it’s a good bet you’ll spend your first day home arguing with a surly baggage attendant.

* Due to our tour/performance schedule, the members of The Killer Dillers travel with an excessive amount of luggage (excessive for a weekend, but not for 3 months). Unfortunately we cannot carry-on our luggage, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t! I strongly believed that if you are checking your luggage, you’re bringing too much stuff. I still stand by that statement, but I now understand why it can happen. Let’s see you travel with top hats, roller skate, canes, feather fans, banana skirt, and aviator outfits and still have space for your regular clothes for the weekend!

4. Check-in and print out your boarding pass before you leave: Again, anything you can do to avoid lines or waiting is good. Everything takes more time during this time of year: security lines are longer, weekend traffic is even worse than average, there are about three times as many people to run between if you’re dashing to make your flight.

*On top of that, see if you can travel with someone who has status. At least you’ll have a shot at being bumped to the front of the (shorter) line.

5. Don’t follow the crowd: If your flight is canceled make sure you listen to the announcement carefully – there’s often a precious tidbit of information that most panicked travelers ignore – like an alternate flight you might be able make or a request that you rebook at the airline’s main check-in desk instead of the kiosk within the terminal.

*I totally lucked out by following this advice. I was traveling to Italy and flew into Bologna instead of Genova. Luckily (or unfortunately for many) there was a historically large storm that came through Germany and our flight was canceled. Over the loud speaker we were told where to go to rebook our flights. I was one of the first in line because I followed the directions. Needless to say, not everyone got where when wanted to go when they wanted to get there.

6. Smile and play nice: Having a flight canceled after waiting through hours of delays is heart wrenching and infuriating. You are not alone in your fury, but you can stand out and get home sooner by staying calm and charming your way onto a new flight. Airport employees get yelled at, abused, and threatened about a hundred times a day. Don’t underestimate the power of their special airline industry computers; they can work wonders if you ask nicely.

*Be nice. Remember, you don’t want to be yelled at when you’re at work either. You can’t more flies with honey than you do vinegar. Most likely there is someone who can help you, so why not be nice to them?

7. Just in case undies: Even the most cunning and organized traveler can’t win every time. Freezing rain in Chicago could mean flight delays all over the country. If you had to check your bag make sure you have a fresh pair of clothes and the essential toiletries. Being able to put on clean knickers and brush your teeth after spending the night using your laptop as a pillow will make you want to punch everyone in an airline uniform a lot less.

*If you’re going to teach at a dance event, bring a pair of dance shoes with you! Don’t chance it (like so many of us have done), because that one time you don’t, you’ll be stuck dancing in your snow boots like a tool. Learn from other people’s mistakes!!

8. Pack a snack: Not only is airport food expensive, but a lot of restaurants and shops close around 9 p.m. You do not want to be stuck in travel purgatory hungry, and by that we mean a dangerous state in which you are both hungry and angry at the same time. A bag of trail mix and a few granola bars are always good to have on hand.

*I travel with oatmeal at the very least. It’s relatively easy to find hot water (for free) from any of the coffee shops and because it comes in a cup, you already have something to make your oatmeal in. Rather genius if I do say so myself. Nuts are also good.

9. Baby wipes, Purell, Airborne: The travel trifecta of illness protection. There’s a reason why the expression “this place smells as fresh as LaGuardia” doesn’t exist. Airports are veritable petri dishes during the holidays so do your best to fortify yourself against the onslaught of germ stranger-danger.

*I’ll add mouth wash and or toothpaste. It never hurts to have fresh breath!

10. Be safe, Be smart: Scoundrels of all varieties lurk in airports – a $120 ticket is a small price to pay for a half dozen iPods, wallets galore, and perhaps a MacBook or two. Use your good sense, keep your stuff zipped up, and be prepared to pitch the mother of all hissy fits if someone gets all up in your business.

*I am fortunately enough that I have not had my stuff stolen, so I presume this is good advice. In general, be smart about what you’re doing and where you are going, and try try try to not look like a tourist. You make for such easy pickings!

Last bit of information that is invaluable as an international instructor (and probably traveler). Have an address and phone number of who is coming for you. I repeat: have an address and phone number of the person or hotel you are staying with. England in particular will put you through the ringer if you don’t have this. Going through customs is a serious deal, even if you are used to breezing through them. You only need to be caught once to get flagged, so always have that information on hand.

Betsey Johnson shoes on Overstock

The other day I was looking all over the web for a winter coat (read about it here) and while on Overstock I stumbled upon some gorgeous Betsey Johnson shoes. I’ve been having a secret love affair with Betsey for the past two year and I can’t seem to get her out of my head. Luckily, she’s pricey enough that I can only splurge on some of her goodies every once and a while.

Some shoes that tickle my fancy:
Betsey Johnson Lefty Brown ($116.47)Betsey Johnson Lefty Brown

Betsey Johnson Kipp Black/Fusian Satin ($97.05)Betsey Johnson Kipp Black/Fuchsia Satin
Betsey Johnson Adair Black Snake ($142.45) 2 other colors available
Betsey Johnson Adair Black Snake

Betsey Johnson Bosy Black/Red ($103.52)Betsey Johnson Bosy Black/Red

Betsey Johnson Never Blue Suede ($116.47)

Betsey Johnson Never Blue Suede

Betsey Johnson Azura Black Snake ($129.41)

Betsey Johnson Azura Black Snake

Betsey Johnson Madeline Black Leather ($110)Betsey Johnson Madeline Black Leather
Betsey Johnson Whisper Brown Suede ($72.99)

Betsey Johnson Whisper Brown Suede(Size 8 M)
Betsey Johnson Clovis Black Multi ($103.52)

Betsey Johnson Clovis Black Multi

Shoes from ASOS is the UK’s largest independent online fashion and beauty retailer. With over 19,400 branded and own label products available and 1000 new lines added each week, is rapidly becoming the market leader in the UK online fashion world. Here are some of their cute shoes on sale!

size chart conversion

Fornarina Platform Peep Toe Slingback Sandal

Fornarina Platform Peep Toe Slingback Sandal

I feel the staple shoe for a female lindy hopper is a comfortable flat shoe. These shoes have a little more pizazz than the basic canvas ones, yet are still simple. I’ve ordered from ASOS before and they were easy to work with and returns were super simple if I ordered the wrong size.

ASOS Leather Lace-Up Flat Shoes ASOS Lace Up Jazz Pump

ASOS Leather Brogue Shoes KG By Kurt Geiger Contrast Lace Up Shoe

Kg By Kurt Geiger Laurel Lace Up Shoes ASOS Patent Brogue Fringe Flat Shoe

For more shoes, visit a similar post on Swingfashionista!

Review – Bloch SFX split flex heels

A month or two ago I needed to buy a pair of shoes for The Killer Diller duo charleston number, Puttin’ on the Ritz by the Pasadena Roof Orchestra.

I figured I should own a pair of character shoes being that I’d like to break into the “real dance world”. I think every female dancer on stage I have seen owns a pair and by golly, I figure I’ll “fake it ’til I make it!” until I do (specifically I mean outside of the lindy world).

Bloch SFX split sole heels

Bloch SFX split sole heels

“The Bloch SFX Split Flex enables the dancer to better articulate as it works with the foot to provide a great range of movement and a beautiful, extended line when the dancer is pointing. A versatile character shoe, the SFX Split Flex I suitable for character dance and interdisciplinary demi-character work. Smooth leather upper. T-strap with adjustable buckle and small hidden elastic gore around ankle for a comfortable, personalized fit, allowing movement of the foot. Shorter shank and elastic goring that wraps around the underside of the shoe combine to enhance the dancer’s pointe. External stabilizer reinforces the heel without compromising the flexibility of the shoe enabling the dancer to feel supported and secure. Soft leather lining. Cushioned insole for comfort. Suede forefoot outsole facilitates turning and sliding while providing some grip.”

Bloch – Sfx Split Flex (Tan) – Footwear

I’ve had these guys for two months and absolutely love them. They run a tiny bit small, but because the shoes is made of soft leather, they’ll stretch a wee bit to your feet. They are rather plain looking, but if you adorn them with ribbons or any flashy shoe buckle thing, they’ll look stunning. The night I got them I rehearsed in them for an hour and my feet were completely fine (yeah for comfortable shoes!!!). I can still point my toes and control my balance in these no problem. The shoe has a 2 1/2″ heel on them, so they aren’t too tall to start off with if you haven’t worked in heels before. I would absolutely recommend buying these guys if you were on the look out for character-esque shoes.

Final note: I ordered these guys off of Zappo’s and they came the next day. Kinda scary how fast they shipped, but I ordered them at 4pm on a Thursday and they arrived by 10am on Friday. Maybe they ship from PA, but really it’s just that they are THAT good.