Thursday, June 18, 2009

Polish & Shoe Choice Suggestions

I had some time during the bad, non-photo-good-for weather to think about matching shoes to nail polish, so I took a bunch of photos of quickly swatched pedis and what they might look best with, or look NOT best with.

Here's a red shoe with metallic polish.
Metallic polish looks good with pretty much everything.

Here's a turquoise shoe with metallic polish.

And here are these two shoes with matching polish.

A little bit boring, but cute.

For a change, try the contrasting color.
I wouldn't wear them like this exactly. I would probably match my feet. But you never know what you're in the mood for. Could start a new trend....

I think the contrasting color does a lot more for the look.

Now what if you picked the wrong color wheel?
Not obviously bad, but you can tell the red is just a bit too blue, and the turquoise is just a bit too green, and a little too dark. Reminds me of secret make-overs I do at the mall on people. ("If she just re-thought the length of that skirt....")

I'll put these close together and you can really tell which looks better.

Now black shoes....they look good with just about everything, especially with metallic, especially if they are a little "edgy" or "hooker." lol

And anything kind of glittery and eye-catching looks great with black too. If you have a shoe that is eye-catching (or glittery) it's a good idea to coordinate a color and not compete with the shoe.

A good pedicure helps it look better too.

You might think the glitter and the black snake-print (fake) shoe would be too busy, and the orange doesn't really match the print shoe, but they add an extra element, and that is style. The black shoe can carry off something glittery because it's on the extreme end of all things black and strappy. The flowered shoe is actually a little bit sporty.
See the stripe? It can carry off an orange that doesn't quite match, but falls in the same basic color family.

If I switch these you will see all kinds of wrong.

Pastels and near-pastels and black do nothing for each other but wash out and look harsh. Flowers (sporty or not) and glitter do nothing for each other but remind you of what the other is not.

Remember to polish ALL of your toes!

So what looks good with metallic shoes? What looks good with neutral shoes?

Metallic shoes look great with a dark polish because it sets off the light bouncing off the shoe, but adds the interest of color. Red looks good with anything neutral, and pretty much any red will do. These are the same colors that didn't look good with the red and turquoise shoes.

Metallic shoes do not look good with a neutral color.

I almost can't stand to look at this! Granted, this color is hard to pull off anyway.

But check out that same color on this shoe. Neutral shoes look good with a different neutral color.

How about metallic shoes with a different color?

Not bad, but how much cuter does that color look with the turquoise contrast?

And speaking of contrast, let's contrast contrast and see what monochrome looks like.
I could have put silver polish with a silver shoe, but I thought it would be more interesting to use a different color of metal. So I'm counting it as monochrome - metallic with metallic. Pretty!

And that same polish with the brown shoe:

Also pretty! Not the most eye-catching, but pleasing.

I'm not making any rules here, but these are what I have found out through experimenting and considering harmony and discord. And having time to play around on a rainy day when I didn't have to work.

This adds another dimension to your summer wardrobe! And if you only do your toes every few weeks, you know that it will probably suit you better to choose a color that is fun enough to look at a lot, but egalitarian enough to match most of your shoes.

If you change your toe polish a lot, have some fun and pick some colors that ONLY match that one pair of shoes. It's a fun activity to find something that matches well in a really unique way.


  1. DANG you have alot of shoes! lol

  2. Hahahaha!!!!! They are ALL from Payless, Marshalls or Ross. I haven't spent more than 20 bucks on shoes since....can't remember!

  3. Nice shoes! I like how much you got into the pedcure and the shoes. Nice examples. Good thing you have cute feet and cute shoes. I had a friend who would only polish the toes that showed. I couldn't believe she'd do that. I mean what if you had to take off your shoes.

  4. I've heard of that too! Especially if it's winter and you have to go to a wedding or something. It would look like how that black shoe looks with the orange. Funny! Thanks for the compliments Lucy!

  5. I like the metalic polish with the blue shoes, and the tangerine with black sandalz, I love mixing it up. Colour co-ordinating is great but u can still colour co-ordinate using different colours right?

  6. YES! I encourage everything! If it feels good when you look at it, then it works!