I hope you will have some suggestions for people who, like myself, are "afflicted" with uncommon shoe sizes. In the summer I can buy sandals, which don't have to fit precisely. But now that it is fall and I need to wear closed styles I dread the search to find something in my size . . . 5 1/2 AA. Can you help?
It is not that summer shoes are easier to fit, but lower heels are easier to fit than high heels, according to Frank Rich of Rich's Shoes. He also points out that the difference between AA and A is 1/32 of an inch that sometimes can be compensated with a tongue pad and thicker hose.
The following information will offer some foot comfort:
In better shoes, the best are the Ferragamo shoes at Saks Fifth Avenue, with some classic mid-heel styles in stock. (Twice yearly, they display advance styles that can be ordered in uncommon sizes.)
Rich's Shoes, Chevy Chase, carries several walking shoes with low or wedge heels in 5 1/2 narrow. They will order from Joyce Shoes shoes that the company has in stock in 5 1/2 narrow including the popular opera pump ($48) with mid-high heel, V-throat, in black kid, brown, navy, wine, charcoal and taupe.
Albee Shoes (101 N. Washington St., Rockville), carries a number of brands including Naturalizer, Selby, Amalfi and Andrew Geller in this size.
Red Cross Shoes has in stock nine fairly tailored styles in 5 1/2 narrow and when they run out in one store, they can tap their other stores in the area. Additional styles can be ordered through these stores from their catalogue.
Shoe Stop, 10251 Old Georgetown Road, Bethesda, is a discounter that snaps up small and narrow sizes when they can find them. Recently, for example, they had four styles, two pairs each in 5 1/2 AA but the situation changes daily.
Giordano's (1118 First Ave. N.Y.C. 10021), which opened last winter, has a catalogue as well as a retail shop that includes many styles in 5 1/2 narrow from Andrew Geller, Julianelli, Anne Klein, Custom Craft and several Italian makers.
Starting in February, Piaffe (1323 Connecticut Ave.), which specializes in small-size clothing for women, will add Andrew Geller shoes in small sizes.
Sizes as narrow as AAAAAA, may be ordered from a catalogue put out by Mooney & Gilbert, Inc., 31 West 57th St., N.Y., N.Y. 10019.
Are shawls out? I don't see many fashion pictures using them.
Many designers continue to use shawls and if you have one, so should you. They don't seem to balance well with strictly tailored success suits, but with softer, sweater-like dressing, big generous shawls add a layer of color and contrasting pattern and texture. And, of course, warmth.