The cheap and nasty ballet pumps come from supermarkets and discount shoe shops, for about £5 – £10. They are made of thick, stiff plastic, they are glued together badly and they stretch and warp over the course of the summer.
The expensive ballet pumps come from LK Bennett and French Sole for around £80 – £100. The uppers are soft, silky leather. They are dainty little things, and I used to live in them in the pre-Miss Thrifty days. They would provide value for money if they lasted… but they don’t.
Fortunately I’ve found some marvellous ballet pumps… at Marks & Spencer, for £19.50 a pair. They have soft leather uppers – not as soft as the LK Bennett ballet pumps, but still good quality. They are sufficiently sturdy to be worn again next summer too (I hope). Best of all, they fit snugly and are extremely comfortable. The picture above doesn’t really do them justice: they look a lot nicer than that in real life, with more rounded toes. At £19.50, they’re a bargain.
I’m late to the pump party: Marks & Spencer has sold these for ages, I’m told. They are easy to miss: if you go to an M&S to look for some, you’ll find them hung up on the racks with the slippers. I have the black ones, but they are also available in blue and silver.