Why do we all love shoes so much? Perhaps it’s because they still fit the morning after a big dinner. Or maybe it’s because they can transform a simple outfit into one with personality and style. When I put on a party dress and waltz out the door in a great pair of heels, I feel empowered. For work and running around, however, I slip into flats. More often than not, those flats are a pair of Stubbs & Wootton slippers. Not only are they immensely comfy but they have heaps of personality, too. I have been wearing them for many years—since the early 90s. In fact, I was in a pair of Stubbs & Wootton slippers that January Sunday in 1995 when I first met my husband, Mike, on the Upper East Side.
I chose Stubbs & Wootton as the first classic in my list of 20 that will be featured in this new column. To celebrate the 20th anniversary of Amanda Reynal Interiors, I am going to share 20 classics. 2021 is an exciting year for our firm, marking two decades of designing and creating home interiors that are filled with comfort, color, and life. In the coming months, I’m hoping to unveil another special project that I’m planning to commemorate this special year to give back to the community that’s supported me. But in the meantime, I’m focusing on 20 items that are meaningful to me in “20 Years, 20 Classics.” Some are design-related pieces that I use on repeat, some are beloved and iconic personal items. All are things that have been a regular part of my style and vocabulary for the past two decades.
To kick off this special column, I have chosen Stubbs & Wootton. The Palm Beach purveyor has not reinvented the wheel. This style of slippers is centuries old. However, it was 1993 when its founder—investment-banker-turned-shoe-brand-entrepreneur Percy Steinhart—started a movement, with a whimsical, sophisticated modern-day attitude. The point is, whether a bespoke monogram or classic, skull-and-crossbones embroidery, Stubbs & Wootton can manage it. Their endless library of motifs, colors, and patterns makes possibilities and personalization endless. While the range of off-the-shelf designs and colors is constantly growing through partnerships with guest designers such as the storied fabric houses Colefax & Fowler or Scalamandré, I find the create-your-own-shoe experience to be the most fun. You can pick from a myriad of grosgrain trims, colored velvets, linens, or even needlepoint fabrics. Then you can pick a motif or monogram to compliment the color scheme.
Since I have been a fan for years, my closet is lined with a few choices at this point. My current favorite pair might be the camouflage needlepoint with a red monogram and red grosgrain piping. My most daring venture with the brand is a pair of hot pink velvet shoes with my name embroidered in lime green. Of course, for a monogram lover, I’m always in the mood to sport slippers with my initials like the pair that I’m wearing in the image above. Last year during lockdown, I had my whole family participate in a contest Stubbs & Wootton held to design your dream slippers. We didn’t win but it was a lot of fun.
This style of slippers has become a classic to me. It nods to tradition and boasts a vision that allows it to live on in modern fashion. This is one example of a classic that I continue to enjoy as much now as the day that I acquired my first pair.
Style. It hits me from so many angles. Some specific items that have become an integral part of my personal style stand out. As a designer, being exposed to inspiring travel, innovative product, and thought-provoking art encourages me to want a lot of it. But when the realistic side of me kicks in, I know that I must hone the skill of differentiating what I think is well-designed and beautiful, and what is special and meant for keeps. Others are pieces I will happily invest and place in my home knowing that they will stand the test of time.