over50feeling40: San Antonio Shoemakers and a Serious Talk About Feet!
Fashion and Lifestyle Blog for women over 50 to help achieve strength, confidence, joy, inspiration, and, of course, head-turning personal style!

Oct 27, 2014

San Antonio Shoemakers and a Serious Talk About Feet!

San Antonio Shoemakers (SAS) has taught me much recently and caused me to ponder how I look at my feet.
Let’s face it, fast fashion has done a huge disservice to our feet.  Of course, shoes are fun…creative…amazing accessories.  But, bottom line, ladies, we must be able to walk in them.  Luxury shoe lines have offered comfort and style…however, most often, at exorbitant prices.   Thus, we see women who walk to work in sneakers and carry stylish heels to put on in the office.   So, finally across the board in fashion, more and more women are living life in comfort shoes…flats, sneakers, brogues, loafers…the classic shoe styles offered in many ways.  Podiatrists are sending a loud message…most foot issues which develop in midlife and beyond are caused by foot abuse in poorly constructed and improperly fit shoes.

Another thing we have allowed the fashion industry to tell us, is that a luxury line is defined by pretty ads, shiny store fronts, memorable logos, and European origin. 

I have learned luxury lines are best defined by:
1.       Heritage and the involvement of different cultures (and YES, luxury can be MADE IN THE USA.
2.       Craftsmanship and quality control
3.       High end detail
4.       High Value
5.       Credibility and trust

By this last definition, SAS is a luxury line in every possible way. Sure, it is found in San Antonio, Texas and the front of the property is a classic, old fashioned general store (as I showed you yesterday), but the product you receive is all about luxury, comfort, and classic style.  These are shoes meant for our active lives…perfect for travel and stylish wear... whether on the streets of Paris or Texas.  Taste, craftsmanship, customer service, and quality are always in style.

I visited SAS on a weekend when the main factory is closed, but I hope to return soon for one of these tours.  In order to demonstrate the care and quality which goes into each hand crafted shoe, I watched third generation employee, Samantha, make a pair of children’s shoes. 

It was fascinating, and though she says she knows not how many shoes she personally has made, you could see the care and time Samantha takes for each little foot.  

All of SAS shoes are crafted from the finest Italian leathers on the market.  Italy is one of those cultures which exudes luxury, quality and value and to team with SAS is one way the brand says, "This is luxury."
Craftsmanship is another marker and to watch these shoemakers at their craft gives understanding as to why it takes weeks to fashion a pair of shoes.  The detailing is in hand stitching and careful molding. 

I have heard so many women lament that no one sits down and truly measures our feet any longer.  And guess what, my beautiful tour guide Norma (second generation employee) helped me see that I have been wearing the wrong size shoes!   Actually, I am not surprised.  She took careful attention to the sizing of all five of the styles I selected to try on.  My feet were so happy…and lately, they have been miserable!
This is the reason why…at this moment…you must go into one of the 200 SAS locations to be properly fit and cannot purchase online.  The experience of the fit is a primary component of this quality line.  And, currently, these classics do not go out of style!  The brogues and loafers with your jackets and sweaters will keep you feeling your stylish best all season.  I will be seen all over the city in my SAS menswear inspired leather flats….and loving it…when the feet are happy, the rest of me is happy!!

Finally, for those visiting or living in the city…the SAS General Store is a great place to find the markdowns.  There is a section of the store for shoes which are slightly blemished on the leather…for each pair I picked up, I could not find anything wrong with them…it is really slight…but helps you afford more of these comfortable, luxurious shoes.  Now, I want to get my husband, son, and grandson a pair!!

Has fast fashion killed your feet?  Let’s get a conversation going….

In order to link up with Sacramento's Share-in-style, I needed a Halloween themed outfit...found it in the SAS GENERAL STORE...go HERE FOR SHARE-IN-STYLE  and MONDAY MINGLE to see more fun fashion!!

Enjoy Your Last October week!!

Time for Fashion Flash...the best posts about fashion and beauty from midlife bloggers!
Our talented hostess today is Deb, at the NO NONSENSE BEAUTY BLOG FASHION FLASH!!...Check out some great posts!

Disclaimer:  I was compensated for this post.  The writing and reporting is completely mine own.


  1. Some of the styles are actually very stylish (which honestly SAS was NOT in the past). Comfort is key!I know exactly where there is one located here in the Kansas City area!

    The Arts by Karena

  2. What a great post! I like the way those shoes look on your feet. They are all so flattering and yet comfortable looking but that third photo from the top shows a very impressive pair. Thanks for telling us about these shoes.

  3. I normally only buy italian shoes because of the style and quality, but you have given me pause consider the SAS brand. Thank you for bring this brand to my attention.

  4. This is stunning, my dear Pam !!! Thanks for joining in Style Share your family with your interpretation of topic. Great!

  5. Who knew?! My feet thank you for the tip. Love the ballet flats!

  6. My mom wore SAS clodhoppers years ago, but I now own 3 pairs of stylish SAS that have taken me to India, Morocco, Ireland, Scotland and Italy for 4 years. I love them and just keep buying.

  7. Hello dear, thank you for sharing this most fascinating experience... Along with your Halloween look! I'm most fascinated by craftsmanship, I usually feature designer who make their products with love :/)
    Coco et La vie en rose / Bloglovin / Facebook

  8. Not my style of shoe, but that's fantastic that they're made in the good ol USA. As for your question. Yes, I believe fast fashion has allowed people to destroy their feet. Personally, shoes are something I won't skimp on. I take personal pride in my feet.

  9. I agree that we are destroying our feet with the dictates of fashion. I'm guilty of that myself. I love the shoe you show right under the photo of their philosophy. I have very few pairs of flats (because I have bought into the theory that my legs look longer in heels) but I really like those. I'm sure all of these shoes are comfortable since that seems to be what they are all about. Fashion that's good for your feet! Karen

  10. I would so love to watch someone make a pair of shoes! I used to go to the shoemaker with my Dad and watch him work. I loved it! Absolutely fascinating!
    I've already had surgery on both feet because of poorly-made athletic shoes. If only I'd known these things sooner! :)

  11. Pam, this post is so timely. I am almost 4 weeks out from extensive foot surgery involving neuroma removal, hammer-toe correction/tendon stretched, big toe broken and straightened and bunion removed. I will definitely be looking for new shoes that fit properly when I get out of this heavy protective boot. It just might be worth a trip to SA. Thanks!

    1. Hi Elizabeth, I have all of those issues...I so hope for good recovery and that the surgery will help you. SAS has over 200 locations. Here is the store locator link http://www.sasshoes.com/store-locator I think you will love what they offer you! Here is to a speedy recovery!

  12. I agree that cheaply made shoes do a disservice to your feet in many ways. Fortunately, I am a big fan of flats and brogues so I love wearing those every day and saving more expensive heels for the nights on the town.


  13. I have a couple of pairs of these shoes and love them. Great post!

  14. My feet are happiest in shoes that fit. Doesn't seem difficult but SAS shoes make it easy!

  15. This is awesome! I am the daughter of the tour guide, Norma. She's been with the company since before I was born so you can say I've grown up with the company. I've seen my mother put his heart into your job, from working in the factory and being part of the shoe making process to finding the right shoe and fit for her customers. 23 years later and i still feel warm when i walk into that store. Thank you for writing this!

  16. I never gave much thought to how shoes are made, and the people who make them. Thanks to your post, Pamela, I've looked up the closest SAS store to me and am planning a trip there soon.

  17. Pam, you look amazing! I have sooooo many gorgeous "heels" in my closet that I simply can't wear anymore. Great job on bringing awareness to this issue! pippa

  18. Fashion hasn't killed my feet, but my disability has. I have always had wide feet and can't do any heel over 3", so my footwear choices have always been limited. I really, really admire this business model and the care they put into their shoes. It's obvious they are high quality; I'm just not in love with the styles shown here. However, I'm sure they have something that would strike my fancy ;-)


  19. Those shoes and the story behind, ahhhhhhhhhhhhh They look gorgeous and very comfortable
    Thank you sooooooooooooo much for joining Share-in-Style, dear Pam

  20. This looks like an interesting experience, Pam. I love a heel with some height, but have definitely been upping the comfort factor in the last couple of years. Great glimpse into the back story of shoe making. Have a great week Pam! xx

  21. A wonderful insight into a dying art, thank you for sharing Pam. Problem feet , another of lifes challanges as time passes, how to still be stylish but comfortable.

  22. This is stunning, my dear Pam !!! Thanks for joining in Style Share your family with your interpretation of topic. Great!



Thanks so much for joining in our conversation today! I appreciate your time and love hearing from you!