Day2Night Convertible Heels: where were you when I needed you?
There was a recent article on boston.com about the Mass Challenge, a Boston incubator that supports young entrepreneurs. One of the entrepreneurial companies being incubated is an outfit called Day2Night Convertible Heels, which makes shoes that come with a variety of interchangeable heels, covering the range from comfy walker to stiletto. That’s a Day2Night kit picture above. And lest you think that we’re talking clunker-ellas here, the shoe below goes with that wrench-kit set of heels. Not bad.
Having worked in a shoe factory, albeit one that made combat boots and work shoes, I did have a question on how the heck this would work. While the vamp of a shoe may stay relatively constant across heel heights, shoe soles are shaped to fit with different height heels. Thus, if you break a high heel and cagily break off the heel of its companion shoe, you’ll still have difficulty walking.
But Day2Night has figured this all out for us, with a “foolproof design” (patent pending), of a:
….unique sole [that] flexes to adjusts to the heel height you choose
The heel technology can work with almost any style, for any occasion.
Well, brava to Founder and CEO Candace Cabe.
Not that I wear heels much anymore, and the heels that I do wear are of the pre-geriatric, somewhat low and somewhat wide variety. (At least I think that they’re pre-geriatric. My niece Molly recently showed me a picture of her trying on clunky shoes, which she told me looked like something that I’d wear. HI-larious!)
So although I’m not apt to purchase a pair of these shoes, I think the idea is brilliant.
In my day, this would have replaced the heinous look of business women in menswear power suits, menswear shirts, floppy bowties, and opaque stockings wearing athletic socks and big white sneakers as they walked to and fro work. Once on the job, you removed the socks and shoes and inserted your up-until-then non-stressed and aching foot into the utter torture of the high heel. (On rainy days, the substitute for the big white sneaker was a low rise rubber Sport-o duck shoe.)
Picture Tess in Working Girl, minus the big hair and outrageous makeup, but before she did her makeover and got the job, got the man, and got the upscale wardrobe, and you’ll have some sense of what the average “career gal” in Boston looked like in the 1980’s. (I still see women of a certain age who continue to sport this practical yet wildly unattractive look.)
I must say that I never did fully embrace it. Sure, I had the menswear suits, the menswear shirts, and at least a couple of the floppy bowties (which I generally avoided, substituting the far more attractive silk shirt with built in bow), but I only did the sneaker-thang once or twice. I did, however, embrace the philosophy, and, having spent way, way, way too much money recovering high heels that I’d caught in the brick sidewalk, I took to wearing flats to work, and left a couple of pairs of heels in my desk drawer. (Every woman I knew had a drawer-full of high heels: black, navy, cordovan, taupe…)
If I had a dollar for every Friedman (sic?) of Boston menswear suit, every Brooks Brother’s menswear shirt, every Jos. Banks floppy bow ties, every pair of Johnston and Murphy three inch spikes… Or, better yet, the full amount I paid for all this dreadful kit…
Anyway, I think the idea behind Day2Night is completely ingenious.
The idea, by the way, struck Candace when she was packing for a business trip that involved social events that called for a variety of heel.
Me, I’d have just settled on some compromise shoe that didn’t quite work for any one event, but wasn’t a show-stopper, either. But this was the big advantage of working in high tech product management/product marketing: all you had to do was look presentable. You were there for content, not for appearance. (The marketing-marketing women tended to dress in a less menswear kind of way.)
Candace, I guess, went ahead and pack-horsed multiple pairs of shoes, given that there wasn’t time to invent the Day2Night shoe right then and there. But she took the idea and ran with it – faster than you can run in a pair of stilettos, that’s for sure.
Hers is one of the ideas up for funding from MassChallenge.
At some point, I’ll graze through their list and see what else is out there, but Day2Night Convertible Shoes has just got to be a winner.
Labels: interesting business