The Think Good Thoughts Shoes that are comfortable, stylish and remind you to keep the pep in your step.
I’ve not been one to spend a lot of energy on fashion, or any real sense of personal “style.” I’ve always preferred comfort over aesthetic.
However, I’ve always appreciated those who embrace the art of fashion—those who understand how to wear clothing to complement their appearance and speak to their personality. And yet, as a newbie merchant of Storied Gifts Shop, we are newly focused on the art of fashion for the clothes, accessories, and jewelry we offer. We won’t claim to be experts in style, but instead wish to incorporate wearable nuggets of inspiration, communicating the essential vitality of well-being that comes with positive thought.
With this mission in mind, it was gratifying to wear my new pair of Think Good Thoughts canvas slip-ons this weekend and receive many compliments. The print features Lucky, our good luck elephant, surrounded by the mantra “Think good thoughts.” Why the mantra? Because we know that, though we intuitively understand it’s better to think positively, our brain is always attempting to sabotage the effort with negative messages. These “healthy state of mind” reminders in our clothes, décor, and trinkets can be an important tool to encourage us along.
We understand that good design speaks to a person at their core, so we put our designer to the task of creating a pattern for our Think Good Thoughts shoe to bring it all together. In addition to the lucky icon, there are bursts of thought bubbles and splashy stars to add pop to the overall look.
MY THINK GOOD THOUGHTS EXPERIENCE
It was Drake Relays this past weekend here in Des Moines, and we always have friends in town to celebrate. I wore my think good thoughts shoes everywhere and received many comments about how cute they are, with many folks asking about their origin. It was fun to mention that they came from the Storied Gifts Shop, and then to explain that Alexandra and I are on a mission to offer clothing that is fashionable and comfortable while encouraging positive thought.
Each time someone asked or offered a compliment, I’d explain about Lucky the elephant and the premise behind the mantra. I felt the positive vibe for me, with the special reward of planting that seed of positivity for someone else. Plus, after so many compliments, I started to think my feet might be one of my more flattering features! I enjoyed wearing something that sparked a conversation of positive thought and well-being—all because of my cute shoes!
Since comfort is paramount, these lightweight canvas shoes are structured to fit the bill. Now that I’ve worn this pair over the long Relays weekend, I expect they will be my go-to shoes all summer long. I love the dark background, too, which I can already tell will help hide the dirt of frequent use. And the fabric permits my feet to “breathe,” which will be essential when I’m on the run, and it’s hot out. I personally don’t like to be barefoot, not even at home, so I wear shoes all the time. These lightweight shoes will keep my feet happy around the house.
THE HISTORY BEHIND THE STYLE OF THINK GOOD THOUGHTS SHOES
Since we are becoming at least a little fashion and mantra centric here at Storied Gifts Shop, I wanted to do a bit of digging into the history of this style of shoe, called espadrilles. A quick search revealed that not only are the shoes lovely and comfortable, but they’re also rich with history.
Espadrilles were made and used widely by the peasants of Occitania (a region of France) and in Spain some 4,000 years ago. They were constructed with a Mediterranean grass called esparto used for making rope, which was also used in crafting the soles of the shoe.
The first documented mention of espadrilles occurred in 1322 in relation to Catalonia where they became prominent within the Basque and Catalan regions. By the 19th century, the shoe was worn by the militants fighting for their independence in Spain. And then, during the Spanish Civil War of 1936 to 1939, Catalan soldiers marched against the fascist armies clad in these working-class shoes. My head started to spin as I tried to digest the complex history of Spain, but this writeup over at Esquire by Emily Lever does a good and concise job of detailing the timeline.
The shoes became popular in the West during the 1930s and 40s when they were featured in fashion worn by Hollywood starlets such as Loren Bacall. And Spanish artists Pablo Picasso and Salvador Dali were also often photographed in espadrilles, which helped them become popular with the bohemian crowd of the 1950s and beyond. Today these shoes which were once favored by peasants are now preferred by the urban and fashionable. Their canvas tops allow for a myriad of designs and colors, and the lightweight soles of rubber make them cool and comfortable warm weather shoes, too.
OUR FASHION IS HISTORY
When I was in college, I took a costume history course and was surprised to learn that the silhouette of today’s clothing is a product of all the fashion that came before it. Of course, from a bird’s eye vantage that makes logical sense, but I’m still impressed to see the past in the present. Shoes are no exception.
I found this wonderful timeline featuring “A History of Shoes” from the Victoria and Albert Museum. The About page explains the museum has an “unrivaled collection of about 2,000 pairs of shoes spanning more than 3,000 years.” Take a look at the photo of the Egyptian footwear of 1550 BC and tell me if you don’t see a similarity with that picture and our Think Good Thoughts shoe.
At Storied Gifts Shop we always have one foot on the side of the past, but we are totally invested and planted in enriching the present by encouraging a healthy state of mind and good positive thoughts. We think these Thing Good Thoughts shoes are a stylish, whimsical and comfortable step toward that goal.