A Flat Life / Elizabeth Criscillo
FOUNDER & CURATOR OF DAVIS TISDALE VINTAGE
I was so excited to sit with Elizabeth late last year to discuss all things vintage and real life foot problems. We were lucky enough to meet at a dear friend’s going away party in Williamsburg back when NYC was warm and winter coats were a memory of the past. We discovered that not only did we share a love of fashion but we also were blessed with the same first name. Some call it a coincidence but I call it fate.
I hope you enjoy reading about Elizabeth, her unique approach to vintage curation and why she’ll never be completely “anti-heel”.
Tell us a bit about your day job?
I sell vintage clothing for a living. Regarding the name of my store, both Davis & Tisdale are family names from my grandmothers. I do everything from sourcing the clothes to styling and handling the sales. I’ve been in the fashion industry for over 10 years and that just inspired me to do my own thing.
What I love about it is that my vision is always to source capsule collections in a way that actually encapsulates what’s currently in the contemporary market place.
I love that – it’s your secret sauce.
Exactly. I’ve taken the knowledge of the stores that I’ve sold to for 10 years & I keep up with the designers. It’s a challenge to source a capsule that’s in line what’s relevant in the stores but it’s what I believe is doing my part of sustainability in the fashion industry.
So what is one look you can always work from day to night?
The older I get the more comfortable I get using my day look for night. So a good classic is mixing a sneaker shoe with something that looks put together to put it to night. Perhaps a golden goose sneaker with a midi skirt or a midi dress.
Are there any specific trends you’re excited about for the upcoming season?
Yes! I’m into mixing animal prints and I always love a good color block situation. 80s color blocking with a 90s minimal touch.
How often are you opting for heels vs flats?
I would say block heels are my go to. My time in LA taught me how to be more laid back & casual. I used to have a lot of beautiful stilettos but I still appreciate a good Manolo Blahnik. A satin Manolo, 90s to early 2000s shoe, with a kitten heel, is one of my staples at the moment but I do like a good mix.
When you think of flats what is the first style that comes to mind?
I would say a sneaker or a Gucci loafer.
So what do you look for in a shoe? Is it the same across both styles (heels & flats)?
I very much feel like a shoe completes an outfit so I will plan an outfit around a shoe. I prioritize style over comfort. I actually bought my wedding shoes a half size too small because I really wanted them and they were sold out in my size. So that gives you a glimpse as to why my feet look the way they do, ha! Mind you, I took them off (Dries van Noten booties) right after the ceremony.
As one should! Is there a particular flat shoe style you love?
I’m a big fan of the classics: Rebook, Nike, or Vans. I do like Golden Goose but every time I wear them my husband tells me to retire the shoes since he doesn’t understand the distressed look.
What are your thoughts when it comes to the conversation and societal acceptance of heels vs flats?
For most of my career, I’ve been in environments where women dress for women so whatever the trend is of that moment, it has superseded most of the choices. I think generationally the expectations have changed a lot compared to what my mother & grandmother went through and how they needed to dress for society. I think there is a stigma, as women, to look a certain way but with every generation we’re moving more towards embracing what feels good for us. As a woman, I think the best thing you can do is just appreciate the choices other women make.
How long does it take for you to break into a shoe and are flats different than heels?
If it’s a very comfy sneaker it takes no time at all. Certain flats, the way the rub on my heel, they take longer.
Are there any particular flat styles that are harder or is it based on brand for you?
It depends. Some of the shoes I buy are vintage so they are already broken in. With that in mind, I would say ballet flats are some of the hardest. Heels, if it’s a stiletto, takes longer to break in and by the time I break them in, the heel is trashed so that’s why I’m really buying block heels. It has the best balance between the balls of feet and not having to be broken in. Plus I get a little height and I can transition them into night.
Do you know your foot type?
No…I don’t. I know my personality type.
Oh gosh, I don’t know mine. P.s. you have a neutral pronation.
Oh! But you need to take the test!
Ugh, we’ll see.
So, foot beauty. Yes, this will be a thing. What’s your go to color?
I’ll honestly put on whatever is around. Earlier, I tried to put a coat of rust orange for a nice 70s pallet but that didn’t go so well so I put on this gold Essie that I don’t know the name of and that’s what we’re working with today. If I’m getting a pedicure though, I’ll go with a classic red.
What is your general relationship with your feet?
It’s a practical one! I view them as a way to get from A to B. I’m a New Yorker. I love to walk. And I see them as a useful thing but not always a pretty thing or something to be kept up with. I could be better about getting pedicures.
What about movement? Are there any “go to’s” that you partake in?
I spin, run, and really love a good hot yoga class or barre class. I’m also known to stretch really well, so I never notice any foot pain. That being said, my biggest foot issues are blisters. I will also say the older I get the more my feet fall asleep so I’m constantly walking around.
Any best-kept secrets?
I believe in always moisturizing. Something like coconut oil and then wear socks to bed.