Saturday, November 21, 2015

Guardian: Should slippers shuffle off this mortal coil?

Guardian: Should slippers shuffle off this mortal coil?

Apparently sales of slippers have declined massively. People do not wear them very much nowadays (this is not necessarily my experience- I've seen a fair few people wearing slippers recently). Two Guardian journalists discuss whether this is a good or bad thing. Interestingly, they don't touch on wearing shoes in the house; they assume that people not wearing slippers will be in socks or bare feet.

I would have have expected slipper sales to have picked up a bit with all the East Europeans in the country, but maybe they too are starting to prefer socks or bare feet to slippers.

Mumfidential: A sick-bug free Christmas? Take off your shoes!

Mumfidential: A sick-bug free Christmas? Take off your shoes!

"Girls, perhaps it is time to get tougher? There’s 90 per cent chance that your shoes carry Colform, an organism that originates from faecal matter, according to studies, while C-Difficile, a diarrhoea bug, which affects half a million people a year, is found on 39% of shoes.

So for a sick-bug free Christmas – take off your shoes!!"

A Texan Whines About Having to Remove his Shoes in Madison

Isthmus| Tell All: Don’t make me take my shoes off at your house!

The response:

"Call me a Madison native, but I think you’re making too big a deal out of this. Why not humor your hosts for a couple of hours? If walking around in socks is enough to ruin your evening, you’re the most delicate manly-man I’ve ever encountered.
That said, I have a solution to your problem. Next time a host asks you to remove your shoes, reply, “I’d rather not.” I doubt if even the most shoe-phobic Madison homeowner would take it to the next level and force you out of your precious boots.
For someone so concerned with masculinity, Hands Off, I’m surprised you hadn’t thought of simply standing up for yourself."

Indeed. This is an interesting response, as it is a point not often made. When people are asked to remove their shoes, they can always say no. Those of us who ask for shoes off must then either excuse them or tell them to beat it. Perhaps not everyone will feel confident to do that, but you should feel free to speak your mind. It's called communication. Those with a genuine medical reason for keeping their shoes on should certainly free to say no.

Sunday, November 15, 2015

Good Housekeeping: 9 Reasons You Should Never Wear Shoes in the House

Good Housekeeping: 9 Reasons You Should Never Wear Shoes in the House

Article by Lauren Smith

"Even though it might seem like a simple (read: less important) task, slipping your sneakers or heels off as soon as you walk through the front door is a step you shouldn't skip. Don't believe us? Here's every reason you should impose a "no shoes allowed" rule in your house immediately."

Saturday, November 14, 2015

Not So Pointless?

This week The Economist ran an article criticising airport security. It pointed out that no attempted shoe-bombers have been caught since Richard Reid in 2002, suggesting that asking passengers to take their shoes off for checks was pointless. However, I would suggest that perhaps the reason no would-be shoe-bombers have been caught is because the checks on shoes deter terrorists from adopting such a tactic. I think that would be a logical conclusion.

Saturday, November 07, 2015


Daily Mail: Moldovan judge is nicknamed 'the sexiest magistrate in the world' after posting controversial photos on Facebook

A judge in Moldova posted a number of pictures of herself on Facebook looking sexy. The question has been raised as to whether this is appropriate behaviour for a judge.

Notice the shoes by the door. As with most former Soviet countries, people in Moldova always remove their shoes before going in homes.

Tuesday, November 03, 2015

African Wedding Cancelled

Church Aborts Couple’s Wedding Over Groom’s Refusal To Remove His Designer Shoes

Another story from Africa.

Some African churches require worshipers to remove their shoes during worship. In such a church in Nigeria, a couple were to be married. Tragically, their wedding was cancelled because the bridegroom refused to remove his expensive Italian-made designer shoes. You might have expected that a bride would be the one to be upset about having to remove dressy heels.

Monday, November 02, 2015

Some still do that

It has been commented on this blog that the practice of retail staff removing their shoes before dressing shop windows has substantially declined. Nevertheless, I saw a woman who had removed her shoes dressing the window in H & M in Hemel Hempstead today, so it still does happen.

Sunday, November 01, 2015

The Local: Seven Swedish habits you get without trying

The Local: Seven Swedish habits you get without trying

'Back in the UK there's often an awkward moment when you arrive at someone's house. Should you take your shoes off? And if you ask and your host says "no it's fine", do they actually mean "yes please we've got a new carpet"? (welcome to the British habit of being over polite). In Sweden, it's a no-brainer. Everyone takes their shoes off. This is a tradition that's mostly explained by the fact that Swedes spend a lot of time outdoors, so they don't want to bring dirt or snow inside. In Swedish cities, where space is at a premium and plenty of people live in studios, you also run the risk of messing up someone's sleeping quarters. I'm a fan of this habit because it saves me housework after I have visitors. The downside is that I can't wear heels to a Swedish party.'

Mark Wright

Hello!: Mark Wright tells HELLO! about his close family bond

Apparently some radio and television presented called Mark Wright, married to Michelle Keegan, has a no-shoes rule:

"I like a clean house," the radio presenter admitted. "If it gets scruffy, I can't stand it. I want everyone to take their shoes off."

Tuesday, October 27, 2015


A bed and breakfast in London with a shoes off policy addresses the issue on its Frequently Asked Questions page:

12) Don't you feel it is rude to ask guests to take off their shoes when they enter the guesthouse?

No because this is a large house really: guest house. This is not a hotel. if you do not wish to keep your shoes in the porch or cloakroom you are welcome to book a hotel.


An estate agent in Southampton, Blue Door, states on its website:

… and we take our shoes off when we step through your front door. How’s that for different?

So they have a policy of asking their staff to remove their shoes when visiting sellers' homes? It's interesting that this is being used as a selling point in their advertising to set them apart from other estate agents.

Would you like one of these Doormats?

Shoes Off, Bitches – Custom Door Mat

Sunday, October 25, 2015

Houzz: 11 Reasons to Love Wall-to-Wall Carpeting Again

Houzz: 11 Reasons to Love Wall-to-Wall Carpeting Again

This is not about removing shoes, but it is relevant. Sometimes when people offer protecting carpets as a reason for requiring shoes-off, somebody will ask why they have carpets in the first place. There are good reasons for opting for carpets.

Sunday, October 18, 2015

Russian Readers

Wow, I'm getting a lot of Russian visitors, or else one Russian reader whose spending a lot of time viewing this blog.

Any Russian readers care to comment? I suppose with Russians I'm preaching to the converted.

Saturday, October 17, 2015

PopSugar: Why Americans Really Should Embrace the "No Shoes in the House" Rule

PopSugar: Why Americans Really Should Embrace the "No Shoes in the House" Rule

It's been a long day at work. You're unlocking the front door with one hand and juggling a week's worth of groceries in the other. The last thing you think of doing upon entry is setting your bags down to take off your shoes, right? Here are five solid reasons why you should.

In the comments section on this, some people suggested getting rid of carpets to improve air quality. That is not necessarily the outcome you will get. If you don't have a carpet, you are more exposed to dust, unless you sweep up very frequently. Carpets also have advantages like noise reduction and less risk of falls for children and the elderly. Carpets or no carpets, however, shoes-off is always best.

Sunday, October 04, 2015

SPLASH Sun-Times: Should you remove your shoes indoors?

SPLASH Sun-Times: Should you remove your shoes indoors?

Are you a household where shoes are always removed before entering the home? Or do you prefer to wear shoes inside your house? Have you ever been taken aback when a friend insists you remove your shoes before entering their home (especially when you’ve just spent a lot of money and even more time picking out just the right pair)? In the U.S., asking your guests to remove their shoes before entering your home can cause reactions as opinionated as if you’d just asked them to outline the peace process in the Middle East. Why? In America we often applaud people for maintaining traditions of their culture, yet we’re quick to criticize another family’s habits (especially when it infringes upon our own). We are often a society of over-thinkers and over-analyzers, and sometimes rely too heavily upon the pseudo facts that fill our Facebook feeds. Although whether or not shoes should be removed before entering the home is rife with controversy (if you don’t believe me just search for “remove shoes indoors” and read the polarized opinions), I prefer a more calm approach. So let’s look at a few facts and figures so you can make your own informed decision about this topic.

New Vision: RDC refuses to remove shoes, thrown out of radio station

New Vision: RDC refuses to remove shoes, thrown out of radio station

A story from Uganda about some government official who was prevented from taking part in a public health radio program because he refused to remove his shoes in the studio. Apparently the studio did not allow shoes inside to prevent dust damaging the equipment.

Africans do not have western bourgeois manners. If an African person wants you to take your shoes off, she makes it very clear.