The Ultimate Prep… Americana Style

s-l1600As we celebrate this Indepedence Day, on the 7th month, the 4th day, in the year 2016, one commemorates the adoption of the Declaration of Independence in 1776. We broke away from the British Empire and became a society that until that point in time, the world had never seen.  A society based on an entirely new foundation, premise and set of standards. For America, this is our day, our grandest day, perhaps the most historically significant for our great nation.

As we shuffle through picnics, firework displays, and barbeques, we ponder what it is to be American. From a style standpoint, Americans are typically casual, laidback and not too fussy. They certainly like their comfortable shoes. Since Americans adopted the British Classic Look and morphed it into their own idea of American Prep, I can’t help but think of larkspur needlepoint slides, sandals, loafers as being quite possibly the preppiest shoes on the planet. And by that, I mean they are awesome. Seriously awesome.

Now, these were adopted from an English more formal, fitted shoe typically worn in satin, velvet and brocade, worn with a higher heel, actually a heel at all. These were shoes that could only be seen on those in the Royal Court as they could simply not be afforded by others. Since this time, the American version has developed and is more subdued and relaxed in form, tends to be adorned with monograms, images of botanicals/florals, animals, creatures of the sea, nautical themes, etc. and represents a leisurely side to our society. In an era of type A personalities fluttering about with their must-dos and endless task lists, these shoes represent a slower pace of life, a less harried time and also function as a social signifier of status.

I would highly recommend Stubbs & Wootton of Palm Beach as a brand to look out for when shopping around for a pair. You can purchase them retail or from a resale outfit such as Tradesy or TheRealReal. The Larkspur Collection are another great name as is ByPaige. Etsy has many options and in addition to some of the previous you can alternately find some variations under Zalo, Kilim Shoes and Vaneli. If you’d like additional inspiration, please see @farmbliss on instagram for her incredible assortment of needlepoint shoes as well as access into her inner sanctuary (which looks amazing and to die for).

A broad margin of leisure is as beautiful in a man’s life as in a book. Haste makes waste, no less in life than in housekeeping. Keep the time, observe the hours of the universe, not of the cars.”

-Henry David Thoreau






Attribution to Whitney English, @farmbliss, That Kind of Woman Blogspot, Between Naps on the Porch