Dworkin

Canvas Oxfords And Nylons

8 posts in this topic

Greetings there Folks.

 

Remember Canvas Oxfords?  Classic design lines and style, to some timeless aplenty. First, some history.

 

Back in the 50’s when I was a kid, these were quite popular, ubiquitous, worn among old and young alike and were “unisex” where today they are considered almost entirely women’s fare. I wore them lots back when and they were the last “tennis” shoe I wore decades ago now. Comfy footwear among any who’ve had experience in a marine environment, especially on a wooden deck, planking or pier, as they had no peer (I’ve no idea should the US Navy still have wooden decks- they would not let me near a docked ship let alone on board one) and are still practically stylish, at least to more than a few and relatively inexpensive. I should add they work well in such environments in a temperate zone as they are certainly not insulated. Elmer Batters, past popular USA fetish photographer even had mags devoted to them. He had preference for a “grungy” look- dirty and scuffed where I like a clean appearance. To be detailed, I particularly like that little rubber tag at the bottom heel back, usually in Blue, sometimes Red, far less often in Green or other color. Adds a nice touch. Combined with hosiery of almost any sort is most appealing. One particular large framed Vargas type photo poster had a long haired blonde wearing no more than a pair of full white Nylon panties, White Canvas Oxfords (naturally with the little Red heel tag) and a smile that graced my Ready Room long ago that was heisted in a break-in in which very strangely, that was the only item taken which due to its placement took some effort. The model also had a gap in her front teeth that I admit to scarcely noticing. Enticing, erotic, exotic I do so miss that poster…    

 

Many turns ago I was entwined with a gal named Sue (whom I posted a story about here that is probably still in archives) who worked at a well known USA restaurant chain and relied heavily on tips. Any to have experience in this arena knows that good tips mean the difference of paying rent, eating, paying tuition or _______. The establishment had a uniform: A White front button short sleeved blouse and a straight A-line skirt in an Orangeish color. The skirts generally were a few inches above the knee and hosiery was a requirement. The timeline was the mid 1970’s when hemlines were lowering along with the economy and the beginning of dark days for Legsters. By chance Sue started wearing classic traditional nylon stockings and found that the occasional welt flash (inevitable considering the working environment) increased tips appreciably. Management attempted forcing her to wear pantyhose/tights which led to a lawsuit though Sue still mostly continued to wear stockings. There were no particular rules about shoes and quite by accident Sue bought a pair of Canvas Oxfords in White and the contrast was immediately striking. She had already caused considerable jealousy among her cohorts and this was more fuel. By pure fortune I procured some Hane’s in Navy Blue and this proved an instant hit- tips increased to the point that we could afford GOOD beer and a full tank of gas/petrol that week. WooHoo! Hane’s, as good as they were (and still are) were as with all traditional stockings becoming very hard to find, especially in size 12 long and due to the rigors of the job they lasted all of four days. Boo Hoo. She then reverted back to a typical Off Black shade which in itself was quite racy, risqué and delightful especially with Oxfords. I never tired of gazing at her wearing such garb as she could look simply stunning. Not long on, most of the other gals started wearing Oxfords so flattery came via copycatting. This simple combination was and always has been most eye catching to myself and no doubt has a fan base. During the Summer I was able to find another pair of stockings in Navy though not Hane’s and Sue wore these to great effect with a Sun Dress that proved to be a real head turner. Of course she wore Oxfords, another pair as the originals, like stockings do have a limited life. I do so wish she had quit smoking or never started. Cynically as I like to say, cancer cures smoking. She is never far from my thoughts even after decades, comes to visit occasionally in my dreams though not often enough and as long as I’ve memory, the image and our times on shall remain alive.

 

Fast forward a few years. I’d met another lass and sometime in asked if she would wear Oxfords to which she did while saying they were “the stupidest things” and though she would not wear stockings she would wear tights/pantyhose and on one very memorable romp wore the Oxfords, a pair of Nylon full cut briefs (in White) under a pair of reinforced pantyhose/tights which I found an enticing and marvelous visual delight. She could be an alluring tremendously wonderful tease… I know pantyhose/tight are not exciting at all to many here and elsewhere, but then again I find thongs as useless so each to theirs. Nice gal, we did well rolling the bones, had considerable related similar compatibilities and she truly enjoyed my demented sense of kink but unfortunately that was about the only areas where we were good. Eventually she married a fellow and started to wear those “stupid” things in which she looked swell, especially with hosiery as she did have smashing legs. Odd mating as the fellow was a typical Budweiser drinking, (USA type) football junkie with a liking for dumb blondes sporting big tits of which she was not and indeed was one of the more cerebral sorts I’d known, an aspect I enjoyed fully. Hubby and I shared a watering hole and though not exactly friends we were friendly and this with full knowledge of his wife’s history. Alas, the marriage did not last and I’d moved from the area (which musicians were wont to do, at least back when) and I lost touch. Always ironic that she chose to wear that which she apparently did not like for reasons I’ve never divined. Still, sterling memories there.

 

Still further on the timeline, oh about  the later 1980’s found me in an office setting (social work) where the majority of staff were women which suited me as I’ve no interest in sports and typical “guy” stuff so I got to hear about and witness fashion trends occasionally. To which I delighted to hear the “miniskirt” was making a comeback. The flood of memories from the 60’s was exiting. As with much that makes a comeback the anticipations did not meet expectations. My first true encounter was a nubile young lass that had it all- lithe, tallish, blonde, blue eyes, gorgeous legs, not at all buxom and comes to work on a great sunny day wearing a miniskirt with White Oxfords. However, the skirt was Denim (I so detest Denim as it became akin to “Smoke On The Water”[Deep Purple], an anthem of detestation) coupled with white socks, a real “Cheerleader “look that holds appeal among more than another few. Now, back in the original mini days ALL girls and women aspired to wear hosiery and usually shunned socks with a dress or skirt. With these visions in mind when I saw the updated combo it was not at all what I’d expected and got worse from there. The “Punk” era was still in prominence which kind of overlapped into the “Goth” period with minis galore, along with combat boots and ripped, runny, torn, trashed nylons, usually but not always tight/pantyhose- a severe visual turn off. I have learned that not much that makes a comeback is as it was. By example the new crop of Star Trek movies should be called Star Trash as WTF!, A Vulcan, falling in love??? Why, I should go to the Vulcan Academy of Comedians to study humor! Suffice to say this whole period was total yick.     

 

     According to a few fashion sources and wags Canvas Oxfords are making their comeback in popularity. I now work in a retail environment and encounter hundreds of people split about 50/50 between men and women (excluding kids) and have seen marginal evidence. With that said, those to choose these seem to be about 70% middle aged women (defined as 45ish to say 60ish) and I do not have a definition for defining “old” age. This gig affords me the luxury to occasionally have sustained interactions with people and I have made inquiries pertaining to the subject to which most women are quite free with their expressions. Most simply like wearing them for most of the aforementioned reasons. The majority are plain white though some are in different shades, others in patterns. Not getting out much and hardly paying much call to the “Fashion” world I know not should Oxfords indeed be making a comeback but I still maintain those particularly in White when worn with hosiery (preferably stockings) and nice display of Nylon clad leg is a very powerful combination.

 

So, I hereby invite and solicit opine concerning what some would consider rather pedestrian footwear and should like to hear any other comments and views.

 

Best,

Dworkin   

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Hi Dworkin:

What wonderful memories! I always enjoy reading memories from a male point of view.

I'm glad to hear that my favorite shoe style of all time may be coming back into fashion. I have been wearing white canvas Keds (with the blue label on the heel) for 56 years and simply adore them. I received my first pair of white Keds for my 9th birthday in 1960. At that time, they were all the rage with teenagers and young women who were starting to wear them with nylons but often still wore them with bobby sox. They were my first "grown up" shoes and they were the envy of my friends! Of course, I was too young to wear nylons so I wore my Keds with sox. They were such a nice change from the brown leather oxfords I wore to school and the mary janes I wore for dress. When I got my first pair of nylons for my tenth birthday, I wore those only for special occasions with dress shoes (skimmer flats), never with my Keds. From age 12, I began wearing my nylons more frequently, so that was when I started wearing Keds and nylons. By then, I had Keds not only in white but also in red and navy blue. In fact, I started junior high in the fall of 1963 with a pair of plaid Keds, always worn with nylons, of course.

Keds are so comfy and versatile. They could be worn with skirts, dresses, capris or jeans. I found I liked the classic white Keds with a slightly pointed toe. I liked to wear them with suntan stockings. Later, when I was allowed to wear off black stockings, I thought I looked so sophisticated wearing them with white Keds. Starting in junior high, my school shoes consisted of brown penny loafers, black or brown sling back flats or Keds. But I remember wearing the white Keds most frequently. I even wore them to school with FFN nylons in the mid 1960s!! My Mom always insisted that my Keds be clean, so they were in the wash quite often. She knew that dirty Keds were worn by the fast girls. In high school, most of us started wearing dress shoes to school, often with a 2-1/2 inch heel. So at this point, the Keds were mostly worn after school and on the weekends. But always with stockings! Can you imagine high school girls today wearing nylons and heels to school? It makes me realize how long ago the 1960s were!

I continued to wear white Keds all through college and throughout my adult life. In fact, I'm wearing Keds and stockings as I write this note while on my way to work on the train. Instead of commuting in running shoes like most women, I wear my trusty white Keds then change to heels at work. It's a classic look that never goes out of style!

Karen

Edited by OnyxPointex
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Hi Karen and All.

 

Glad to find a intriguing SHQ cohort to hold appreciation for iconic footwear. Ah, Keds, know them well and can't tell what my last Canvas Oxfords were though I do recall PF Flyer's (made you "run faster and jump higher") and Red Ball Jets back when. I've no idea should shoes from decades ago been a just a USA item or extended beyond the shores but they were the things as said kids and adults wore. I do recall they did have two major styles: rounded toes and those more pointed though we should state the the pointed types are/were modest at the least as far as "pointed" is concerned. Karen, you are also correct that the style you mention hold more appeal, at least between us and I'd say those Elmer Batter's fans...

 

They were indeed practical- when wet they dried out fairly quickly in moderately warm weather or in the sun. I often wore them without socks (which at times was in violation of a proper dress code, of which at the times I did not give a wit.) I suspect I should have quite liked to have known your mother (especially as I became older), and of course yourself as she most definitely would not have allowed you to roam about with soiled footwear! She was a great mentor and teacher, even to one as independent in spirit and  resolute in convictions as you.

 

Great insights you've provided and Thanks for the sharing. At risk of sounding as lecherous voyeur, you realize wearing Keds on a train means you garner attention from lecherous voyeur types (hopefully of an appreciative nature) and I've one question to ask related: what trains do you take?

 

Cheers,

Dworkin   

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There is a young lady where I work who love her heals but due to an ankle issue has swapped to white converse she is an always wearer of sheer fine denier tan hose.

Alas from the tightness of her skirts and a once very lucky flash I got when she climbed over something to sit on a chair by me I know them to be tights & not hold up or stocking.

She does have the most lovely legs though and the sheer hose really add to them, the converse look with the hose works very well too. I personally also love hose with flats just as much as with a nice set of classic heals.

What I hate are clumpy shoes those chunky healed things that I refer to as hooker shoes !!!

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I've rarely seen women wearing white oxfords with a skirt or dress. Too bad, too, it's a great look. I've asked FG to wear white quarter socks with either her current "tennis" shoes or some white oxfords she'd buy. Alas, the love of my life firmly believes that that type of foot wear (and sox) do not look good with skirts and dresses. I think on a grown woman who is fit, it's a very clean, wholesome youthful look. And with nude or suntan hosiery, I can offer no resistance.

 

Sounds like OnyxPointex began setting male hearts aflutter at a young age.

 

Mr FG

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Hi Mr FG and Dworkin:

What nice things for you both to say! I'm flattered but I hardly think many men are hearts aflutter over this 65 year old gal!

I should add that I sometimes wear white ankle sox over my nylons when wearing Keds. They provide a bit of warmth in cool weather and also protect precious stockings. Any time I wear vintage FFNs, I always wear them with sox for my commute. This also provides an authentic vintage look as in the late 1940s and early 1950s, high school girls often wore seamed stockings under their bobby sox to school. I'm sure no one notices but it makes ME smile.

Karen

Edited by OnyxPointex

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Hello Dworkin & Shq Gang

 

Just came home last night.  Spent a few weeks truckin way up north with our last leg on US Highway 2 from Ashland, Wisconsin to St. Ignace, Michigan. Spent the night in the Quality Inn just north of Big Mac.  Took some pictures at the lookout the next morning then rode that majestic work of concrete and steel over the Straits to US highway 31 and 22 down Lake Michigan to Grand Haven.  Spent the afternoon at the Pier and State Park.  Waves were breaking over the concrete so we had to watch our footing.  Quite a few people fishing for Salmon also.  We had a great time and yesterday morning we left for home.  And guess what?

 

I was wearing a sweat shirt with a hood, blue jeans, black seamed stockings and Keds Champion Oxfords.  I had the cuffs of my jeans rolled up to mid calf so I could show off my seams.  Just like back in high school!  Since you started this topic and I see you have a passion for Oxfords (We Called Them Tennies) I thought I'd chime in.  I've been wearing Keds since I was a kid.  I kind of like the worn trashy look myself.  That look has some type of special quality to it! Stockings and Oxfords as you indicated were a big deal with Elmer Batters. His using Oxfords and sheer panties was something that I some what copied. Especially the sheer panties!  That was me!

 

I enjoyed wearing Bermuda shorts (The shorts that were an inch or so above the knees) with stockings and Oxfords.  Some Bermuda shorts had a stretch to them.  I liked the pink hip hugging Bermudas that easily showed the tabs of the garters through the material.  Hanes Town Taupe walking sheers were my choice of hosiery.  That was a look that was hotter than hell!

 

Thanks my Michigan friend!  You really brought back some memories.  Next time I go to Grand Haven I'll have Bill take some photos in front of the light house!

 

Susan

Edited by HanesBaby-CSB
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Hi Susan:

Welcome back!!

Your post regarding bermuda shorts sure brings back memories. My Mom was a frequent wearer of bermuda shorts with stockings in the early 1960s. I didn't copy that look until sophomore year in high school when the cool girls started wearing tight bermudas with stockings as you describe. After school, of course! Well, within a few days, the non-cool girls like me copied that look! My Mom didn't like the tightness of my bermudas but she couldn't really say anything because she wore them herself. I also wore mine with my trusty Hanes Walking Sheers but in our area, this look was worn with black skimmer flats. I think this was the first time I felt sexy because of an outfit LOL!

Karen

Edited by OnyxPointex

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