Review: Irregular Choice Alice in Wonderland Card Soldiers Shoes

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I was originally planning on doing my review for the second Harry Potter Funko Pop figure I bought today but I realised it might be a bit much Harry Potter for some and these pretties arrived in the post so I felt like I had to do today’s post on them instead. I guess it’s kind of a first impressions as I haven’t worn them a lot, I have worn them for a few hours around the house though to get a feel for them.

Irregular Choice are a British shoe company that make bright and unusual shoes, I have six other pairs that I love, most of them heels, and they are so comfortable and easy to wear. Recently they’ve partnered with Disney for a Star Wars range with shoes including flats and varying heights of heels including some that have lightsabers as the heel or Yoda. More recently they did an Alice in Wonderland range based on the Disney movie, the original animated one. I loved these flat shoes, with the two Ace card designs, but my size had sold out by the time I realised they existed so I ended up resorting to eBay. Fortunately someone was selling these and I ended up spending the same as the original shoe price on these including the postage so in the end it turned out well. I have seen these on eBay for almost twice what they cost and very limited size wise so I think it was pure luck that these were a good price and my size.

At full price on their website these are sold for £110, though they’re currently out of stock in all sizes. I’m not sure if they’re coming back in stock anywhere or if it’s a case of when they’re gone they’re gone, but they are still on their own website here so it might be worth keeping an eye out on there. I think that the smallest size reappeared in stock fairly recently but that might have been a return or something.

I don’t know if you guys find this but I seem to find that there are a few companies that I know that if I get something from them then they will suit my shape, either my feet or my body in general with clothes. Irregular Choice is one of those companies for me, I don’t have many shoe companies I can say that about as my feet are a 7 or 8, they seem to have high arches or something that makes enclosed shoes or those with enclosed toes a bit tight, and they often fit better into wide fit shoes, though I do go down a size then. They are expensive, compared to what I’d normally pay for shoes anyway, with the cheapest I’ve bought new being £70 not in the sale but they are often in TK Maxx near me and I bought some for under £30 there so they can come down if you’re lucky to find some in your size and a style you like.

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The first thing about Irregular Choice that I love is the box itself, which may sound weird, but they have a sort of drawer design where you pull out the box with the shoes in. I currently have four of these boxes in use in my room for storing various things, and two of them have been in my bedside cupboard for years now and used regularly and still holding together so they’re pretty sturdy and would make a nice stack if you have a few of them. As this box is for flat shoes it’s slightly thinner than the others I have but it’s still substantial enough to hold quite a bit, I think it could be good for storing makeup or something where it’s useful to be able to pull the drawer completely out of the outer container.

The Alice in Wonderland theme starts with the box, it took me a while to notice but it’s actually designed to look like a big book, at least I think it is. The top and one side have a lot of gold lines that I think are meant to look like pages and the opposite side has the Alice in Wonderland design on it that could be meant to look like the spine of the book. The back even has the detail of having three, what could be, reviews by the characters from the book, all of them giving five stars. I like these little details and will definitely be using this box for something, I haven’t decided what yet but this one will be kept nice. Inside the box some of the tissue paper wrapping the shoes is also Alice in Wonderland themed, it’s light blue with white, less opaque, silhouettes of Alice and the White Rabbit in a pattern. I normally keep the tissue paper too, I haven’t found a use for it yet but it’s too pretty to get rid of.

Onto the shoes themselves and these are so pretty, I think I’m using that word too much in this review, but at the same time I think they’re shoes that I will be wearing quite a lot. The design on the front is material with some stuffing that makes it feel padded, the print of the characters themselves are printed on and it’s pretty detailed. The head of the card is leather, I think fake leather, and the face itself is sewn on with silk thread by the look of it. The geometric patterns, both the gold and the turquoise side, are done in thread as well, it’s not printed on and the black and white sections are both on areas of material that are the opposite colour underneath so they might catch easily if you’re not careful with them. I think this is the main way these shoes will end up looking older, the geometric pattern getting caught or going out in the wet and the white on the print in the card front absorbing dirty water. The heel is covered in black glitter of various sizes but none of it has come off when it’s rubbed against anything when I tried it on or taking the photos and I even rubbed them a bit just to check and it seems to be pretty well stuck on there.

Looking at the soles and there’s even more detail with a print that takes up about half of the sole that’s a copy of a still from the film, at least I think it is. The shoe with the Mad Hatter on the card has the Mad Hatter on the sole and the White Rabbit shoe has his picture on both the card and the sole as well. There is a small area of the sole that’s got a different print; a repeating pattern of basic cartoons of some of the main characters. The sole of the heels doesn’t have much grip but if it’s like the soles of the heels I have, which it does look like it is, these will last ages and end up getting a bit tatty around the edges but the rest still have the criss cross pattern on them after wearing them a lot.

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Inside the shoes is really well padded, a lot more than any of their other shoes that I own, and the material itself is really soft. The pattern on the inside of the shoes is the same as that on the small area on the soles and the Disney Alice in Wonderland logo is embroidered on another piece of material, it feels soft and maybe like really fine felt but I’m not sure what it is, which does stand proud of the inside itself. I haven’t had a problem with this in the short time I’ve worn them but it might be an issue if the soles of your feet are sensitive as the edges do stand out quite a bit and it’s harder than the rest of the inner. I can see this inner being one that could get marked very easily as the material is the same as that on the front of the cards, it does make it softer than the inside of my other shoes but some of them have almost wipe clean material which has stayed looking nice. It’s also the kind of inner that will probably make your feet hotter than a lot of theirs so if sweat is a problem for you then these may be ones to avoid, or you’d want some socks or something to wear with them. I think I’d recommend that anyway, those ones that just cover your toes and go around your heal, as they would make the shoes look nice inside for longer anyway.

One problem I often have with flat shoes, and one of the reasons why I chose this design over the others in the collection, is that the bit at the front digs into my feet as I have high arches. I have to go for the ones that look like they have tongues at the front almost and these shoes are really good if that’s a problem for you. The fact the cards come up quite a bit means that it also helps to hold the shoes in place so there’s no flopping off when you walk and the backs don’t rub, which I have found with some of these flat shoes even if they’re the right size. There is one point where the card part meets the shoe, at either side of it, that might be uncomfortable as it goes in a bit where the front of the enclosed bit starts, but as the material inside is so comfortable I don’t think it’d be as much of a problem as with some shoes. I have worn these for a few hours around the house and nothing yet so that’s a good sign for me.

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The design on the tissue paper, it shows up best in front of a light so I put it on the computer screen for this photo

 

One thing to know about these is the sizing, which to me seems slightly odd. In the past I have bought size 7s from Irregular choice and they were labelled a size 40 but it seems that these are a 40 and a 6 ½. I’m not sure if this is a recent change with their sizing as it’s their standard sizing chart. I also have other shoes from other companies with a 7 being a European 40 and a 7 ½ being a 41. The fact these are sold as 6 ½ when I’m normally a 7 might just be because of the size and shape of my feet suiting this style of shoe but it seems a bit odd when I have them from other brands and I’m still a 7. Just something worth knowing if you’re going to get these. I would still recommend going with your normal size but if you’ve had Irregular Choice shoes before maybe go with the European sizing on them rather than the normal UK sizing.

Overall I love these shoes, I like the design and the colour but I know they’re not ones to wear in wet weather as the material seems like the kind that would soak up the moisture and stain easily. The pattern on the sole is pretty but I know from past experience that it just takes four or five wears for it to start to scratch normally. Also they don’t have much grip which isn’t a problem for me but I know will put some people off. The main reason I got these shoes was because, although I love my heels by Irregular Choice, I have recently found my balance is a bit off so I wanted some of their shoes that I can wear while I’m still not that confident in heels. They are expensive at £110 but they’re a bit of a birthday treat, even if I did open them a day early, and shoes are something that I often spend more on. I know that they’re good quality and will last me ages, I wore the purple heels I have pretty much every time I left the house for months and they still look almost as good as new if you don’t look at the soles.

I wish these were still in stock but you might be able to find them somewhere if you’re lucky. Do any of you guys have anything from the Alice in Wonderland collection? Or the Star Wars one? I really want the droid flats from that too but I think two pairs at this price would be a bit much plus they’re also sold out everywhere and going for way over the original price on eBay. Or just Irregular Choice in general? I love their style and have a few pairs of their shoes, they just seem to suit my feet.

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