My dear roommate, Rachel, is moving to Japan to teach at the end of the month. It's normal to switch from an outside shoe to an inside shoe so the classroom stays cleaner. She needs to stock up on shoes now, because chances of finding a women's 12 in Tokyo are slim. She wrote me the following:
"I know that these sport Mary Janes fit my shoe budget, but they're from Payless. Even if I buy a good arch support for them (costs more than the shoe actually), I'm afraid that they'll be uncomfortable and fall to pieces in 3 months. Total money potentially wasted: $50.
"My customers at the shoe store love Keens for their durability and comfort. These sporty ballerinas [pictured] look like they have substance, and they don't just come in black in my size. But they're $90.
"I love Danskos. Since they are comfortable, I'm less inclined to care about how much I hate their style. Awesome arch support; The angle the shoe is on puts your back in perfect alignment. We don't sell this mary jane at my store, so I can't get an employee discount, but it's made on the same last as a style we carry, so I know that a 43 will fit. (Only available in black) They weigh about a million pounds (actually about 3 or 4 lbs for a pair, which is still a lot) and they cost $114."
I found some other options of the less sporty variety, and they all come in Rachel's size.
purple suede ballet flat, Steve Madden, Nordstrom $79.95
bronze buckle flat, Eddie Bauer $89
teal buckle flats, Nine West, Endless $78.95
orange print ballet flat, Nine West $69
red buckle flat, Indigo by Clarks, Zappos $81
If you'd like us to do some shopping for you, email us the specs at fashionmefabulous[at]gmail[dot]com.