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Finding cheap shoes is no mean feat

Never underestimate the power of an Italian leather shoe.Sure, I’d like to think I’m not so shallow and materialistic as to let a designer accessory change my outlook on life.But I’ve never owned a pair of Isaac Mizrahi shoes – until now.There’s no telling where they’ll take me.I’ve never been to Armenia. That could be a good start. My awakening occurred Wednesday after driving to Denver for the Gwen Stefani concert with four other girls, who ranged in age from 17 to 42. We planned a whirlwind day of shopping, eating and gossiping (and when I say shopping, I’m talking like six hours).Yes, men, we really can shop nearly as long as an entire work day.Like a sorority girl to a fraternity house, the Saks Fifth Avenue outlet store drew us in and tempted us with Burberry leather jackets and Marc Jacobs jeans. I was feeling a little sad as I realized I couldn’t afford many of the items.But then I came upon the shoe aisle.I lost my senses quicker than my menopausal mom misplaces her car keys.The selection was incredible, and so were the prices. I could have spent an entire paycheck in the boot section alone.Just as I was about to give up on making this a real shopping trip, instead of the unpleasant window kind, I encountered the most beautiful shoe I had ever seen.The sexy cobbler’s creation got my heart racing faster than Dale Earnhardt Jr. I slipped the pointy black-and-white-striped mule with a red leather flower accent on my foot and could have sworn the heavens opened and angels started singing.I won’t even get into what happened when I put the other one on and looked in the mirror.Some people get excited about garden gnomes. I like shoes.Balancing myself on one leg, I removed the left shoe and flipped it over to see the price. In a store like Saks, that can be as heartbreaking as being a Cubs fan watching the White Sox win the World Series.I laughed to myself when I saw the $200-plus sticker and was just about to leave without my soulmates when fellow shoe junkie Kara spoke like a prophet.”If there’s a blue sticker on the price tag, they’re 70 percent off,” she said.I have never loved the color blue more than at that very moment.There was no way I could pass up the opportunity of being in complete and utter bliss, so I headed to the register. I took one last look at the shoe and noticed two little nicks in each of the slender black kitten heels.Translation: another 10 percent off.”How hard did you have to bite for that to work?” joked Kelley, another shopping buddy.I had such a buzz from feeding my shoe fetish that I couldn’t even muster up a smart-aleck reply. I just smiled at her with a glazed-over look.The excitement of my first pair of Italian designer shoes was short-lived, however.Before moving on to the Cherry Creek Mall, I decided I would wear – or, more appropriately, show off – my new purchase. And before I had even made it upstairs to American Eagle, I had formed a mean, party-crashing blister.Getting my feet to fit comfortably into these shoes is a feat.I limped through Cherry Creek and finally went barefoot until I could get into my trusty burgundy square-toed boots back at the car.I finally payed the price for fashion.April E. Clark wanted to wear her new Isaac Mizrahis out of the store like she did with her Hush Puppies from Stride Rite as a kid. But she thought might be inappropriate at Saks. She can be reached at 945-8515, ext. 518, or aclark@postindependent.com.


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