Racked is no longer publishing. Thank you to everyone who read our work over the years. The archives will remain available here; for new stories, head over to Vox.com, where our staff is covering consumer culture for The Goods by Vox. You can also see what we’re up to by signing up here.
In 1999, a character in a very important movie shared an extremely profound idea: “There’s a difference between like and love. Because I like my Skechers, but I love my Prada backpack.”
I’ve always understood the sentiment of inanimate objects having a hierarchy, and while I currently own neither Skechers nor a Prada backpack, I can now fully relate to the idea because I’m a new owner of a pair of Gucci Horsebit-Detailed Loafers.
I deliberated over buying these for months and went through all of the conflicting emotions, from “Should a pair of loafers really cost this much money?” to “Maybe I’ll buy them as a graduation present to myself.” I even did my due diligence and asked the Racked shopping editors to help me find an equally cute but less expensive pair.
Our EIC Britt eventually talked me into buying them — I’m pretty sure “You deserve them!” is what ultimately convinced me — and I finally took the plunge.
Let me just say that I’m not here to tell you these shoes are worth the investment. How to spend your well-earned money is for you to decide. What I am here to say is that these loafers are the difference between like and love. They’re delicate but sturdy and are way more comfortable than I thought they’d be. The leather is buttery soft and smells great, too (I performed a very dramatic unboxing at my desk when they arrived and made everyone around me smell them). Quite simply, they put every other pair of loafers — and flats, frankly — to shame.
When I first bought them, I vowed to only wear them indoors and keep them for special occasions to fully maintain their transcendence. I quickly realized that was ridiculous, and have since taken them outside and worn them casually. But I still cringe at the prospect of folding down the backs of the shoes and converting them into slippers, as Net-a-Porter suggests I do, because that just ain’t right.
The flip side here, though, is that I still can’t get past the sheepish feeling of saying “Gucci” when people ask who makes my shoes (most of my family and friends don’t recognize the buckle, and honestly, I love them for it). Also, I’m still not proud of how much I spent on them, or that the same brand that makes them also sells paper fans for $450.