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For the last few years, I’ve resisted taking tennis shoes with me on trips. I figured there was no greater travel or fashion crime than wandering around a city in jeans, a button-down, and bright white tennis shoes, which, combined with my inherent neurosis, meant I was bound to be mistaken for Jerry Seinfeld. Simply, I could not let that happen happen.

I kick so much ass at Photoshop.

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The alternative has not been easy. As woeful as they are to look at, tennis shoes are damn comfortable. And considering that I spend hours upon hours walking in a new city (I’m regularly on my feet for 6 hours at a time, taking a quick break for lunch, or cupcakes, or to sit down on the subway on my way to more cupcakes), it’s been hard to find something that works without leaving my back and knees aching (it does not help that I have inherited my mother’s tendency to carry a purse the size of an Ewok with me.) I generally opt for converse (what they lack in arch support, they make up for in street cred), or ballet flats which have not been designed for heavy walking (the brand-new pair I brought with me to New York last are now the shoe-equivalent of a Lohan. Rough-living makes them look far older than they are).

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In my constant search for comfortable travel shoes, I am amazed by the number of heinously ugly options out there. If these shoes were horses, they would be shot, immediately.

I once thought that I was immune to such ugliness. When searching for comfortable shoes online, there were so many options, I’d simply skip over the unappealing ones and straight to the cute. My brain has its own filter for this sort of thing. And yet, there are times when a shoe is so unsightly, it will not be ignored. It screams to be noticed. “LOOK AT ME!”, it shouts. “I WAS DESIGNED BY DRUNK KINDERGARTNERS!”

Some of these shoes are impractical. Others are baffling.

All of them are very, very ugly.

Here are the top twelve worst pairs I’ve encountered while digging through the bowels of Zappos. Enjoy.

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1. Arcopedico N42

Seriously? N42 is what you are going to call the shoe? Sweet Jesus. Put in a little effort. Give it a name. May I suggest “The Bertha”?

Also, they appear to melting.

Ugh. These look like what the Stay-Puft Marshmallow Man would wear when he wants to get laid.

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Okay, fine – this isn’t exactly a STINK that I need.

After all, I don’t need to spend several long hours being interrogated by Homeland Security. And I don’t need to be strip searched, and, most likely, cavity searched as well.

Still, these decals are just about the funniest way I’ve seen to make your suitcase distinguishable from the countless others that come sliding down the conveyor belt in baggage claim. It’s only $25 for a set of four decals: cocaine, piles of money, sex toys, and kidnapped flight attendant (which is my least favorite – I find it too disturbing). But while the price is probably more than worth a laugh, I suspect that these stickers are bound to get you into some serious trouble …

I can hear the latex gloves squeaking in anticipation. (Photo courtesy of TheCheeky.com)

I can hear the latex gloves squeaking in anticipation. (Photo courtesy of TheCheeky.com)

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I once had a sweater that was, for all intents and purposes, better than I. I rarely wore it, because really, it’s difficult to don a piece of clothing that you know will outshine you.

RoundTrip’s line of vintage “upcycled” suitcases and bags (available through Etsy) sort of fall into that same category. I really want one, but then I would own a piece of luggage that just might be too hip for me.  I don’t know if my tender ego could handle that. Check them out:

Okay, so I dont actually wear enough hats to necessitate a hat box, BUT STILL. So cute.

Okay, so I don't actually wear enough hats to necessitate a hat box, BUT STILL. Desire knows no logic.

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Because I would like to maintain a modicum of professionalism on my blog, I am using all my willpower to refrain from writing, “OMG OMG – I WANT ONE I WANT ONE I WANT ONE.” and having that be the entirety of this post.

That being said, OMG. I want one:

And now I bet you do, too.
And now I bet you do, too.

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It took me like 2 hours to make this graphic. Im such a lamewad.

It took me like 2 hours to make this graphic. I'm such a lamewad.

There may be something wrong with me. I’ve accepted this (and if you’re still reading my blog, you should have, too, by now). I just went through every lip balm I own, analyzing, scrutinizing, and testing them. Fortunately, my neurosis is your gain! Here are my suggestions/cautionary tales for balms, whether you have a have long dry flight ahead of you, or plans to kiss Valentino by a crystal blue Italian stream. (more…)

I saw this bag once and when I asked the hubby if I could have one, he emphatically said, “Jesus Christ … NO.” He clearly has no sense of humor.

photo courtesy of gama-go.com

photo courtesy of gama-go.com

 

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