wellies.jpgLucy Hulme writes

I know that some of you are shrieking 'NO!' right now, horrified that someone who writes about shoes all day long would even dare to suggest that Uggs have received an undeservedly unkind reputation, but give me a chance to explain myself before you switch off the computer in disgust.

First of all, I'm not trying to say that Ugg boots are particularly pretty or attractive. Secondly, it's just not just Uggs that I'm referring to here. Wellies (with, of course, a pair of thick knee high socks worn underneath), hell - even trainers, are also included in my secret I-don't-want-anyone-to-know-I-own-any-but-I-can't-live-without-them vault of shoe crimes.

I first purchased a pair of Uggs a couple of years ago, because, living in an ancient farmhouse in the middle of the English countryside means that we have no electricity except a log fire that is made up in the evenings (it sounds romantic but unfortunately isn't). Thus, I wanted something that would keep my feet comfortable and cosy, and that I could tuck my pyjama bottoms into in the privacy of my own kitchen and office.

Then, something strange began to happen. It began with me wearing them outside the house, if I had to pop out to the car or even just taking the dogs for a walk down the lane. It's now gone one step further, and if my feet are suffering particularly from the extravagances of a pair of high heels the night before, and if it's only errands I have to perform (i.e. a speedy trip to Tesco to stock up on fashion magazines), I will on occasion wear my Uggs out and about.

I have a tough time knowing when it's appropriate to wear wellies, too. When at university up in St. Andrews in Scotland, I got used to wearing wellington boots every day as a way of life. It rained each day without fail, it was windy each day without fail, and so after a month or two, vanity subsided and I joined the throngs of welly wearers to my lectures and seminars, armed with a pair of warm thick socks in order to really make the most of the experience.

Now, it's all gone too far. I've become slightly too used to the comforts of wearing shoes that don't force your feet to arch in a way they don't want to, or your toes to squeeze into a space that's just too small. And although I love beautiful heels just as much as ever, I'm beginning to get pangs of frustration when I slip (or force) a pair of platform heels on, knowing that if they pinch after five minutes, I'm going to be practically crying after eight hours or so at work.

Before you judge me for these crimes against shoe fashion, ask yourself whether it's really so wrong that sometimes I should crave shoes that will keep my feet comfortable for an entire day, or boots that I can slip on without a second thought as to whether I should take a spare pair with me in the car in case I decide when I get to my destination that I really will be too uncomfortable.

So ladies, I ask you this: what are your deep dark shoe secrets?! And does anyone else out there enjoy wearing their wellies just that little bit too much?

Lucy Hulme writes for Shoewawa and The Bag Lady. She would like to assure everybody reading that however comfortable they are supposed to be, she will never ever buy a pair of crocs.