And like the little black dress or trench coat, the basic pump is a wardrobe staple for women who favor elegant office fashion--with a dash of chic and sexy. An iconic, graceful midnight-hued pump is truly the investment piece that requires no mirror time wondering, ''Are these the right shoes?'' Of course they are.
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But in considering the purchase of the ''perfect pump,'' there are several points (pun intended) to consider, including craftsmanship, quality of leather, toe shape, heel height and arch support. In our search, we also considered cost, shine, a delicate heel vs. a strong-looking one--and ultimately found our perfect match.
What sets the Manolo Blahnik's Tuccio style apart from other pumps are its clever details. See how the trompe l'oeil design elongates the leg? Its curvaceous shape looks neither trendy nor dated. ''You could have bought it five minutes ago or 10 years ago,'' says George Malkemus, president of Manolo Blahnik USA, which has stocked the Tuccio for a dozen years.
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Image: Lauren by Ralph Lauren