Several years back, I  was stopped by a woman on 5th Avenue inquiring as to how I could manage the streets of New York City in high heels. I responded, "Well, the city is my runway and I believe it deserves a proper catwalk!" 

For me at the time, four+ inch heels were my staple; I adored the way my walk seemed to magically turn into a strut once perched on my stilettos. Fast forward to today, and while there is no mistaking my love affair with a classic high heel, my style preferences have expanded to a new obsession: sneakers. It began with a New York Fashion Week schedule so chaotic that high heels were simply not a practical option for running around the city for back to back appointments, events, and shows. I was determined to find a way to mold a basic pair of white sneakers into my most glam and fab outfits. As I began to play more and more with mixing and matching pieces in my wardrobe, I was delighted to discover that the sneakers actually gave me permission to dress more boldly as it provided a muted balance to the overall look! Hence, the sequins + sneaks phenomenon that jump started a style journey in which I chose not to sacrifice comfort for glamour.  

I remember sitting at a buying appointment with a European shoe vendor who went on and on about how silly and strange the American choice to wear high heels was. In her words as best as I can recall, "Why undergo something so unnecessary for just a few more inches of height?" I chuckled along with the rest of the team, but left quite perplexed as I myself was a lover of heels and had in no way viewed them as "unnecessary"... until that very conversation. 

Years have passed since then and it is only now I am realizing that while some may view high heels as over the top and superfluous, for some it is simply a celebration and accentuation of the feminine form. This is not to say of course that you can take any beauty or fashion trend to the extreme where it becomes disordered (i.e. Foot binding, etc.). But personally, some are "high heel kind of days" in which I want that extra oomph of spunk in the form of striking height and long lines. Perhaps I want to pair with rugged boyfriend jeans to give a more polished feel that is more true to my style. Then there are also "sneaker kind of days" in which comfort is key and I am excited to play with the irony of a casual shoe paired with a sparkly dress.

Regardless of the type of day or mood, I am confident in my true sense of style today (granted it may change tomorrow!). For the time being, it is a celebration of femininity with an edge of spontaneity! And as for the runway being my streets, I laugh and give thanks to God that the kind of shoes I am wearing does not make the catwalk. Indeed, it is the woman behind the shoes that is but a shadow of the true light and encore... Jesus! May it always be that fashion merely edify and magnify the beauty already bestowed and displayed in the person you were created to be. 

So go on girl, sneaks or heels, your catwalk is waiting. 


Xoxo, Diwa Doll


Photography: Emeka Ihedigbo