I’m a bit of a list fan (you may have guessed). I used to be even more of a list fan – waking up each and every morning and compiling a list of every tiny thing I needed to or should do that day, until a therapist (yes, because I wish I was American) told me that writing lists is only good if you’re going to tick off every thing on that list. 

“It’s great for ordering the mind,” she said. “But beware the feeling you get when you leave your list unticked; if the things on your list aren’t important, or you just know you won’t get them done – and it won’t really matter – then don’t add them. Achievable essentials only.”

Which is why, after reading this list of the shoes every women must own (because I said so), you must immediately print it out and take it with you until you’ve ticked every single box on it. You’re welcome. 

Pic: domaine.com

1. Flat pumps

Some schools of thought would be even more prescriptive about this one, saying that your flat shoes should be ballet pumps, but I need support and ballet pumps remind me of Amy Winehouse's worst phase, so I try to keep mine a little more pimp than pirouette. (But be warned; if you try them on and you can feel the carpet in the shop through the soles? They won't last one rain shower.) Black bow front pumps, €30 at River Island.

2. Seriously sexy shoes

Now, let's get one thing straight. The idea of seriously sexy shoes has seriously been confused in recent years, thanks - for some inexplicable reason - to TOWIE, Geordie Shore and the rise of the WAG. Sexy footwear does not need to have a platform or, even, a stiletto heel (although a little height is good, because, like it or not, it does something potentially painful to your legs and bum that causes you to walk like Jessica Rabbit) - often the sexiness is in a hint of toe cleavage, a bare ankle or a softly pointed toe. (Note: softly.) Mesh leather shoes, €608.86 by Bionda Castana at My-Wardrobe.

Understated, yet festive, this holly-embroidered jumper from Asos is a keeper at €43.

4. FUN shoes

Yes, that's fun with a capital F-U-N. Everyone needs a pair of shoes in their wardrobe that scream impracticality. Perhaps they're covered in glitter, have pom poms dangling from the heels, are covered in cartoon slogans, kittens or fiery orange unicorns - what's important is that you have a pair of shoes in your wardrobe that you can wear when you're feeling CRAZY. Or when you're feeling totally dull, and want your shoes to do the talking. These should be shoes that make you feel super, super happy, even when you just think about them. Eternally Dolly heels, €745 by Charlotte Olympia at Net-a-Porter.

5. Black heels

From the sublime to the not-ridiculous-at-all: here comes the boring part. You will never own a pair of black pumps that you do not wear. It's simply a statistical impossibility. You will inevitably wear them to a job interview, to a funeral or on a date when you just can't think of anything else (maybe he's not ready for your sexy shoe, and he'll never be ready for the FUN shoes). This is an investment, plain and simple. Black leather pumps, €75 at & Other Stories.

There are some shoes you really do not - and will never - need, despite what you're told,viz:

6. Nude pumps (guess who in the pic!)

These do not elongate your legs, at least not unless the person you're trying to impress with your giraffe-like limbs is short-sighted and approximately 100 metres away. What they do is make you look like a Barbie doll (but chubbier, as a rule) with really, really shiny feet that are usually, let's face it, in the form of platform soles with an ungainly spike heel that's not-quite-stiletto, not-quite-chunky heel. Ugh. 


7. Christian Louboutins

This is a tricky one, because sometimes Christian Louboutin produces seriously beautiful shoes. These are (a) rarely seen in the brand's Brown Thomas showroom and (b) even more rarely seen on any real people. What people tend to wear are those horrible noughties "classic" pointy-toed pumps with the toothpick heel in the highest height possible. See also: Celtic Tiger, WAG, Victoria Beckham in the "pob" era.

8. Knee-high boots

I remember a time when owning knee-high boots was an essential life stage. They were so versatile! You could wear them over jeans, with mini skirts, midi skirts, shorts... Now, just try to imagine any of those aforementioned combinations looking good. Not unless you're in Abba, basically. Soz.