Monday, 26 December 2011

Fancy Footwear and Royal Concerns

I hope everyone had a good Christmas.  We enjoyed ours, seeing lots of family and friends, definitely the best kind.  The cloud on the horizon is that my mother is still not well,  and that is at the back of my mind. 

Now it's time for the post-Christmas sales, when retailers offload everything they hoped we'd purchase before Christmas.  Some years I love going round the sales, other years I can't summon up interest. Strange, isn't it, when going to the sales seems so appealing ? I mean, look at all these merry faces LOL

This year I want to clear out rather than accumulate, and just admire some of the entertaining things I spot in shop windows.  Here are two pieces of fancy footwear in the shops of the West End. I like this cheerful gingerbread man, but I'm thinking about getting the sugar out of those shoes.

I was very surprised to see these socks (below)  in an upmarket men's outfitter.   They have the monogram of the Queen on them, (E.R.II)  and although I'm no expert on royal etiquette, I do believe you're not really supposed to wear this unless you are in the service of the Queen or actually the Queen herself.

Was this shop selling these in the hopes that HM would drop by to pick up some nice woolly socks to wear when she goes out tramping across the moors for her Boxing Day grouse shoot? Or are these bed-socks, perhaps, for those chilly winter nights in Buckingham Palace?

I am not tempted to buy. They are very good quality socks, and are sold at royal prices, definitely NOT reduced in the sales. 

Actually at this time I am thinking of the Queen with real sympathy, because her husband, Prince Philip, is in hospital for the 4th night running, after heart surgery.  I'm sure she is personally very anxious, and it always seems to me it must be hard to be in the public eye when you have to deal with personal problems of this kind.

I'm hoping the Prince will soon be back again at the Palace, being his usual self.   Here he is with the Queen when they were both young, - perhaps sixty years ago - and she might have been just a princess then.


  1. I thought of the sugar in the shoes, too!
    I didn't know Prince Phillip was in the hospital, let alone still. It has to be difficult for anyone in the public eye to be scrutinized at such personal, emotional times. I hope he'll be okay. They look so much in love in that picture. :)

  2. I am sorry to hear your mother is not well, and hope she recovers soon. And I agree about Prince Philip and the Queen. It is amazing how much the still do at their age and I was sad to hear he was unwell.
    I am also not tempted by the sales-it always seems too much at this time of the year, having just received lovely presents I have not had the time to enjoy yet, I do not want to acquire more things! I decluttered my jumper drawer tonight and hope to go through the whole flat by the end of January. We shall see!
    Happy new year to you!

  3. And he always has seemed like a really fine man. My best thoughts go out to them, too.

    I love those shoes, but my heel wearing days are past, I would guess. Beautiful color and they're suede, too!

  4. I'm sorry your Mother is not yet well. Sending thoughts and prayers to her...and you.

    Those shoes are so pretty! I could never walk in them but I sure can enjoy looking at them.

    So interesting about those ER socks!

  5. Good to hear you had a chance to see family and friends over Christmas and enjoyed it! Every time I read or hear of people for whom Christmas is dreaded as a duty-gathering of relatives they'd rather not see, it makes me sad.
    Queen Elizabeth has certainly seen her fair shair of trouble in the family; they are, for me, the living proof that money and position can't buy happiness.

  6. There's too much hustle and bustle round the shops at this time of year, consequently I never see what's on offer at the sales. I wonder if the shop has a special licence to sell socks with the Royal monogram as this is Their Majesty's big year. Happy New Year to you.

  7. I am glad you had a good family time! Sorry about mum. The happiness caused by shopping shows on the faces of those in the picture! Ah Phillip, what a man, never afraid to say what he thinks, if he is thinking when he says it.

    To Simon Kelner, republican editor of The Independent, at Windsor Castle reception: “What are you doing here?” “I was invited, sir.” Philip: “Well, you didn’t have to come.”

    To female sea cadet last year: “Do you work in a strip club?”

    To President of Nigeria, who was in national dress, 2003: “You look like you’re ready for bed!”

    His description of Beijing, during a visit there in 1986: “Ghastly.”

    To a British trekker in Papua New Guinea, 1998: “You managed not to get eaten then?”

    His verdict on Stoke-on-Trent, during a visit in 1997: “Ghastly.”

    To Atul Patel at reception for influential Indians, 2009: “There’s a lot of your family in tonight.”

  8. I'm like you: this year, I want to clear!and I must say that I hate, even I'm afraid, when I see soooo much people crowded in shops and become mad because they want to buy something..I'm sad for the Queen and Prince Phillip. I'm very fond of England and all english life, and they're part of it; I agree, it must be hard to have public life when you're going through hard moments.

  9. Glad I'm not the only one who thought of sugar in the shoes, Rita! Sarah, my life is one long declutter. I agree about how much Prince P and the Queen do, that's why I admire them, specially when you think how tired old people get. Yes, Prince P can say some hair raising things, though sometimes it's out of the mouths of babes and that one which I hadn't heard before to Simon Kellner - yay! Thanks Adullamite for those great quotes....

    Librarian, you know, another thing that makes the Royal family interesting to me is that I doubt they even expect to be happy, I think it's about duty. My husband says that they probably have a case under human rights legislation because they have no choice about their work and can't retire. :) I'd love to talk to some of them in depth and find out their attitudes.

    Jill and Teresa, yes, I too would DEFINITELY rather photograph the shoes than wear them. Valerie, I had not thought of the special licence, but it was certainly that kind of shop!

    Thanks to everyone about the good wishes for my mum.

  10. Those are are merry faces and festive mood abound in the first photo! NOT! xD

    The Royal family fascinates me and it sure must not be easy to live their life actually despite the trappings because all those cumbersome stuff like doing their duty and whatnot.

    Hope your Mom is doing well now. Take care.

  11. Those shoes are gorgeous but I couldn't walk ten feet in them! As for the socks... perhaps they're there for the royal staff to purchase? After all, there are shops in London selling cassocks for priests, and wigs to judges - I guess you have to show your ID when you buy them?

  12. Not going shopping, I'd look about as grim as the people in your photo if I had to. I did enjoy your shoes and socks tho.

    Didn't know about Prince Phillip, hope he's doing better. Hope your Mom is doing better as well. Worrying about aging parents is hard.


  13. I think that if I was walking down any busy city street in the rain I would be unlikely to have my happy face on - sales or no sales. In the country it might be a different matter.

    I, too, hope your Mum is improving.

  14. I like the capture of the rainy day crowd. And my feet hurt just looking at those shoes … the socks would be far more comfy. What a lovely picture of the royals in their youth. I wish Phillip well, too, and hope both he and your mom see brighter days very soon.

  15. I hope your mother is improving. You were as crazy as me venturing near Oxford St. Have avoided it after one day. Although I did get a couple of bargains off set however by losing my lovely cashmere gloves.

  16. Slightly strange, that photo. Why is he leaning away from his bride? Short-sighted, long-sighted, or not too keen?

    Tose socks look very soft and luxurious, I'd wear them anytime. But sales? No thanks, i can't stand the crowds and the shoving.

  17. I went to buy some food for New Year's days and I found that the market was less crowded. It's because of the duration of ressetion in Japan...
    I wish you and your family have a nice New Year.

  18. Nice Post. I Like your photo collection taken in this chrsitmas.

  19. Hey Jenny!
    If you get a chance, look at my latest post. I mentioned your book! Sorry, but I couldn't say too much since I need to READ it! (Why must I have to work for a living when all want to do is read books and write my blog and comment on others?)
    Hope your mother is better now and hope you have a lovely new year!

  20. Though I'm not one for shopping at normal times (I treasure hunt all year round), Christmas sales seem less daunting than the pre-Christmas rush. Those glum faces you captured make for easier competition among the racks than zealous Christmas shoppers!

    Those shoes with the cookies are an interesting juxtaposition for someone Asian like myself. Footwear and feet are considered unclean in the Orient! To see food next to footwear is slightly disconcerting, though fun from an artistic point of view!

    I hope you have a wonderful 2012 ahead! It's been such a pleasure discovering your blog and your writing. Thanks for dropping by me. And I wish your mother good health this year.

  21. The day after Thanksgiving and Christmas sales here in the U.S.A. are very stressful. It must be the same across the world. Those are quite some shoes. Once the shoes are bought, someone will have to buy a new dress and new handbag. :D

  22. Friko, that is a good observation and I don't know the answer! :) Kay, I was so honoured and pleased you wanted my book adn I hopeyou enjoy it! Foolish Aesthete, I hadn't thought of the idea of the foot being unclean -although I think this is why I felt slightly odd about the display - come to think of it. The association of sweat and sugar - ugh! AVCr8teur, they are so very much party shoes that I think the whole outfit would have to be designed to go with them! Rachel, your comment made me laugh - also made me wonder if I should pop in when the judge wig shops are having a sale :) Thanks to everyone who has left kind comments about my mum, progress is rather "2 steps forwards 1 step back" but she is making progress.

    And Prince P is out of hospital and doing well - a survivor, that bloke, no doubt about it.

  23. I'd hate the thought of sugar in my shoes!
    I too am trying to purge in 2012, getting rid of 50 items this weekend is on my list, as well as meeting those 3 friends...maybe I could combine that?!
    I love that last photo of the Queen and Prince Philip- the way he's looking at her and she at him, they're in love. Their visit to Ireland in May was a huge success- we LOVED them! In fact, one of my favourite photos ever of the Queen, is during that visit when she was laughing with a fishmonger in the English Market in Cork.
    Have a lovely weekend, I'll visit again as I love your blog.


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